Anger and ridicule alone won’t win People’s Vote
I found myself agreeing with, and heaving a sigh of relief when reading, Caroline Criado Perez’s article (“We need to change our tune.. and fast”, (TNE #124).
If the Remain side continues to rely on character assassination, anger and ridicule, backed up by overused economic warnings, the next vote will not be won by us.
I remember watching one of the television debates before the 2016 referendum and being caught up in the passion and vigour of the Leavers. They weren’t going on about GDP or emergency budgets. It was all about feelings; fear, loss of control, distrust, lives threatened by unknown forces. We were being told control could be won back, fears could be lifted, lives could be better without the EU, and people believed it.
Now we have to rebuild a belief in the EU and what it can do, and has done, for struggling communities in the UK. I hope we haven’t left it too late.
There isn’t any point in pretending that the EU is without fault. It isn’t, no political institution can be. But it is surely our job to be passionate, and tell anyone who will listen what we will lose, and how this country stands a much better chance of improving everyone’s lives if we stay in Europe.
We might even start to suggest things that could be changed in the EU in future, to address people’s fears and distrust.
That sounds to me a lot more like taking control of events and changing people’s minds. Sarah Pennie Todmorden
Caroline Criado Perez is right. During the campaign, I noted that Remain had left out ‘pathos’ in the requirements of winning an argument as set out by Aristotle (logos, ethos, pathos). Facts and truth alone are not sufficient or good enough to win an argument.
Animal readers of
Maggie and Susie from Lincolnshire want Brexit to be over and wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Here’s Minnie, who is considerably more interested in experts than Michael Gove was, catching up on a few weeks’ reading thanks to her loyal British/ French staff, Julie and Eric in Cheshire. Caroline Criado Perez has, as always, hit the nail on the head. We would never have had the Brexit referendum had decades of sub-standard British politicians not poisoned people’s minds against the EU by using it as an Aunt Sally and a scapegoat for their own shortcomings.
The reality is that a lot of the best things: equality, food safety, mobile roaming rights, environmental protection etc have most effectively been achieved at EU level in co-operation with other member states. I hope there are already people with the relevant expertise researching ‘What has the EU ever done for us?’ good news stories and working them up as potential People’s Vote broadcasts.
I also think that efforts should be made to energise those too young to vote, but old enough to understand the issues. They need to be encouraged to beg their Brexiteer relatives to have a thought for the future of the younger generation and at least refrain from voting Leave even if they cannot bring themselves to opt for stay. Peter Martin Strathconon
The feeling of being let down by our politicians is something that could unite us all, if we could hold off from passing judgement on who is to blame for a moment and focus on the idea that there must be a better way of organising our national affairs.
Perhaps the example of Vaclav Havel, whose contributions to the liberation of Czechoslovakia from Soviet oppression were presented in your Great Europeans feature in TNE #124, can teach us something. A charter of citizens’ rights was central to the creation of a democratic state in Czechoslovakia. This is something that the British lack, and this perhaps contributes to the sense of vulnerability that many communities feel.
Communities and individuals have been mistreated. A charter could simply state a right to fair treatment, which should be independent of any trade deals, customs unions, FTAS or other acronyms.
Technology is a wonderful thing. It can solve all sorts of seemingly impossible situations. So when Owen Paterson pops up on television earnestly arguing that modern, seamless techniques can overcome the Irish border problem, it sounds quite reasonable.
It’s so convincing, I suggest the next time anyone hears this solution being offered that it is welcomed with open arms. Because this new invisible, seamless technology could also apply to Scotland, London, Manchester, Bristol, Brighton and all the heavily Remain-voting areas. It could cover about 48% of the population – direct democracy at work!
All in the spirit of Brexit being a stupid answer to a stupid question. Alan Hause
Surely the answer is for Leavers to be able to opt out on an individual basis? Anyone ought to be able to renounce their EU status and privileges, and forego their rights, without dragging everyone else down with them?
This type of freedom should be offered to committed Leavers, to respect their views, in the event that Remain wins the next referendum Dr John King Stratford-upon-avon
Maggie & SusieDoes the animal who runs your household read TNE? Send photographic evidence and crucial biographical details to let[email protected]neweuropean. co.uk, putting ‘Animal Readers’ in the subject field