Tomorrow is the day for British people to vote on whether they want Britain to remain or leave the EU. Many people, wrongly assume, that British people living outside of Britain will vote: remain. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth; the opinion of the international British expat community is as divided as it is in the British Isles.
From my point of view, it’s thought provoking that this single, albeit hugely complicated, issue has divided as well as united people across opposing political and economic ideologies, as well as diverse religions, ethnicities and faiths. Even within business and trade there is no clear voice; some say the farmers want to stay and the fishermen want to leave; big business says stay, smaller companies say leave. Age also isn’t a clear indicator of how you are going to vote although it is said that the younger generations, if it doesn’t rain and they aren’t watching football, will, generally speaking, vote to remain.
The only constant in this referendum campaign is that both sides have behaved despicably; both have used scare tactics, hatred and paranoia to bully, threaten and misinform the general public into voting for their side. This behaviour makes me ashamed to be British and it is far removed from the things about Britain and British people that I admire cherish and love.
Now, if the British community are divided, what does the international community think? Well, in a nutshell, and, very tongue in cheek:
- The French: The EU started without Britain and we will continue without them.
- The Germans: Britain; it’s a weak nation with under-performing processes, waste, and a rubbish football team.
- The Italians: We hate the British, they have no sense of style, they are not good-looking and they can’t make coffee. However, we love David and Victoria Beckham.
- The Spanish: Stay; united we are stronger. But, if you vote no, we’re not going to like you.
- The USA: So, are you saying that Europe is a continent and that London isn’t Europe? Anyway, we don’t care about your tiny insignificant little European bubble we’ve got far more pressing issues with who’s going to be the next president.
- Russia: We are not interested. It is not of our concern.
- The Irish: The Brits are such a crac; they say stupid things, they don’t know a potato from a cabbage and despite the fact that they kept bombing us and stealing our women we want you .
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