June 24, 2016

One of the Most Important Political Decisions of our Lifetime has Shocked the World.


*Update: David Cameron will resign from his position as Prime Minister following what Labour legislator Keith Vaz, called another “a crushing decision,” a “terrible day for Britain and a terrible day for Europe. In 1,000 years, I would never have believed that the British people would vote for this.”

J.K. Rowling is just one of many who have taken to Twitter to voice their outrage at the outcome of the historic “Brexit” vote which took place yesterday, and has left the UK reeling.

No, outrage doesn’t really cover it. It’s more sadness. Loss. Regret. Even heartbreak.

This is what I’m seeing on my feeds. This is what I’m feeling right now. This is not to mention the economic fallout that will inevitably directly affect so many of the most vulnerable.

 

I live in Oxford. My city, my county voted overwhelmingly to remain. As did London, Northern Ireland and Scotland. We, and the almost half the population elsewhere across the union are left with an historically colossal outcome that will affect every aspect of our day to day lives in the coming years—and yet it’s one we did not vote for.

This not like when the party you didn’t vote for wins. This is more like the prospect of being forcibly removed from your home and being powerless to stop it. Or waking up to find out that the person you trusted the most, who has made you feel safe for years, has betrayed your trust and really isn’t who you think he is.

I’m left asking myself what the Britain I fell in love with stands for now. What it all means. For me, for my family, for the immediate society we live in.

My son’s school has a display on the wall in their school hall of kids’ art. It’s all about celebrating diversity. About what it means to be British. These kids aren’t even teenagers yet and they seem to get that difference is not a bad thing. They seem to understand that having friends and neighbours of different colours and nationalities is something to be celebrated. Not feared.

I left the country of my flesh and bones to make a new life in this place, which although I shared the same language, felt like a strange land to me at first. I’m an immigrant. I might not have travelled over on an overloaded boat and I might not be brown, but I’m still technically one of these foreigners who seem to have scared so much of the population into this extreme move.

The country I moved to was one where I felt I could be anyone I wanted to be without judgement or interference. I could walk down the streets of London with the multitude of other faces, hearing languages I didn’t recognise, and still feel at home. I don’t know what London or the rest of the UK will look or feel like three years from now but it won’t be the same. All I do know is this may no longer be the home I chose because of its openmindedness, its postitive attitude to diversity and the freedom it offered to build your own future from determination and adaptability.

Many of us who did not vote for this are now seeking to distance ourselves from it as #NotinMyName gathers momentum on Twitter.

 


For now, I am not sure what else to say to ease this shock and sadness. I’m still processing. And I’m not the only one.

This is a massive step into the unknown.

 

 

 

Author: Khara-Jade Warren

Images: Twitter 

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