Disappointment to Anger
I am taken aback by how angry I am. I wake with a ball of it in my chest.
My anger is this: that perfectly reasonable people see fit to insist (all over the internet) that whilst they are not racist they did indeed vote #Leave and now they’d like to forget all about it to be friends with people like me who are not racist either and wanted to #Remain.
This is the bit that they overlook in their playground haste to make up and ‘be friends’ – that the campaign #Leave ran, and they endorsed with their X, was (at best) racist in both subtext, inference and tone and on occasion overtly so much so that even Michael Gove ‘shuddered’.
Leavers parade their friendships with ‘foreigners’ as evidence of their non-racism, forgetting that one swallow does not a summer make. That being someone’s friend at an indiviudal level does not negate the ability to be racist at an institutional or political level.
That’s what I can’t take – the unthinking prejudice laid bare that we can’t even talk about. Because any #Leave voter will hotly protest their innocence in this regard, whilst failing to see that their X endorsed that distasteful aspect of the Leave campaign whether they like it or not.
So for a Remain person, it’s full on cognitive dissonance when trying to relate to Leavers. Their actions and their words are *incongruent and the majority won’t even say so. Unfortunately, the only ones who are congruent are those shouting on the streets at immigrants to return to ‘their country’, or sending hateful messages to Polish residents in Huntingdon.
As a Leaver you may say, rightly, that you abhor this kind of thing. But it is your failure in overlooking this aspect of the campaign you voted for that has sadly endorsed it. It may be an unintended consequence, but it is a consequence, and I do not see enough people taking responsibility for it. Rather I see Leavers berating Remainers for pointing it out.
And yes, that makes me angry.
*(The incongruence continues on an economic level too: Wales, Cornwall, Yorkshire – all huge beneficiaries of EU money and now wanting assurances that their funding will continue…)