In 2016 I partook in the EU funded Erasmus programme, studying for a year in the beautiful city of Nijmegen, The Netherlands. My Erasmus year was a beacon of EU beauty, during which I made friends with Germans, French, Italian, Spanish, Finnish, Dutch, Greeks and m o r e.
I could never have afforded this without the Erasmus grant.
Disregarding politics (I would call myself politically homeless; I have no party affiliation and would love to see a new age of politicians ushered in entirely), Britain leaving the EU is nothing short of a catastrophe in my eyes.
I’ve spent my life so far in education, a sector that will absolutely suffer. Scaring some of Europe’s brightest minds away from studying here doesn’t sound bright at all… but hey, there’ll be less immigrants right?
I’m not scared of immigrants. I’m not scared of immigrants ‘taking our jobs’ because frankly, I’m not qualified to be a doctor, a nurse, a dentist, a surgeon. I also don’t want to work as a cleaner, a labourer or bin man but we all expect our bins collected, right? I’m not scared of immigrants using the NHS, because on a human level why would I ever feel another human isn’t entitled to healthcare. A human who can look at another human and say ‘you aren’t worthy’ is one without humanity.
In a world brought closer by relations, technology, understanding and multiculturalism every single day, leaving the EU is a backwards step, and one that makes me impossibly, desperately sad. Sad for the future of this country, for my future children, for the reminder I live around such intolerance.
Brexit has brought out the worst in politicians and the public alike, and I don’t believe a single politician is acting in my interest.
For the sake of balance I’m not saying the EU is perfect. The NHS absolutely needs more funding, the homelessness Europe wide is of a disgraceful level and the costs of membership are great.
But leaving is regressive. There are other options. Mark’s and Spencer’s paid more tax than Amazon last year. Let’s make a difference from the top down rather than pointing fingers at the bottom up.
Luck is the only reason we weren’t born into poverty, and I’ll be damn sure to remember that before I ever think about looking down on anyone else.