So, the result was Leave

52% of the UK electorate have voted to leave the European Union. A 2% majority having such a massive impact seems rather slim but that is what has happened. Sure the referendum was advisory only and doesn’t have to be followed but with Cameron resigning come October there isn’t much hope for “prolonged negotiations before Article 50” and then it slowly fading from public view (wishful thinking I know). 
This isn’t to say we should ignore the democratic process but when a campaign of this scale and importance has been rife with misinformation on each side, mainly Leave, and the majority is so slim it seems unfair somehow. Though maybe that’s just the feeling of losing something far more important than a general election that will affect my age group (who voted mainly to remain) far more than the main age group who voted to leave. 
Everyone knows the economic disaster that the announcement of this vote has created. The £ dropped 13% against the $. The FTSE100 lost £100billion (500 points). The Bank of England is looking into emergency measures. And S&P are downgrading are AAA credit rating. This is catastrophic damage to the UK economy that may stabilise soon or may not, we shall have to wait and see over the next week and more.
While the economy factors are terrible what is worse is the message this sends and what the ‘spirit’ of the nation is. I cannot help but see it as insular, isolationist, with a lack of compassion and care, full of selfishness, and wanting to keep Europe at arms length. As if we are saying “got what we wanted, leaving before we need to return the favour.” We have turned our backs on the EU and the problems it faces because we ‘feel’ we deserve some ‘special’ status they won’t give us. Well we never deserved that status, the country was simply drunk on its own nostalgia. This vote sends a message to EU citizens in the UK that they aren’t welcome. I have heard this first hand and it is truly heartbreaking. Britain had become a diverse society, welcoming, and attractive and while this may still be true for the most part. 48% did vote to remain. It feels tarnished by the result of this referendum. 
On top of this there is massive division within the country itself, not just between the 17million Leave and 16million remain voters but also England/Wales and Scotland/N. Ireland as well as London and the rest of England. Yes Oxford voted heavily to remain, as did Bristol, Cambridge, Manchester, and Liverpool but London’s was such overwhelming support it seems at odds with the rest of the country. That isn’t even mentioning the age difference in remain and leave voters. This multitude of division can’t be cured over night, nor by party politics (which has its own wounds to lick) and will likely have a profound effect on future elections.
I will remain pro-EU and a believer in its goals despite this referendum.


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