As of Friday 24th June 2016, Britain – in the way it is governed, trades, and stands in the world – has changed, forever.
People across the land turned out at polling stations in record numbers, each one swayed by their own stance on immigration, the European project, and their vision of a British future. Conclusively and crucially, more wanted out (or the Brexit) than in.
It is the wrong time to be quoting Drake, but in these emotional moments I cannot help myself… Nothing was the same.
At the time of writing, David Cameron has stepped down from his role as Prime Minister, which means delaying the action of invoking Article 50. Put simply, this delays the start of the legal process of leaving the European Union.
Lets break it down. We, Britain, signed a contract called the Lisbon Treaty that joined us to the EU. Just as any contract would, there is a technical “get out” clause. In the Lisbon Treaty this is called Article 50. To start the legal process of leaving, the Prime Minister must action Article 50 and begin the process. So far this get out clause is still untouched. Once this is actioned then the process to remove us from the EU will begin formally.
Still confused? When you get married you enter into a contract. When you want to divorce you have to go through the processes, and a person in the marriage has to go to a lawyer and formally start divorce proceedings for that divorce to be recognised. This is pretty much the same as our situation right now – we are divorcing the EU with Brexit, but no one’s actually popped down to the local legal team and got the official papers to serve to their soon to be ex – yet.
But regardless of the technicalities, this is happening. 52% of people who voted chose to leave the EU. And now, everyone is in panic mode. Rightly so, as the unexpected outcome has triggered some pretty immediate and negative reactions. The Pound has dropped to it lowest global value since 1985, meaning if you are travelling abroad the value of your money is less. This is already negatively impacting people on holiday. This one holidaymaker in Greece tweeted the picture below stating that they couldn’t access any cash.
Then after that, shares plummeted as well. The FTSE 100 tumbled more than 8% within the first few minutes of trading on, marking the biggest fall since the collapse of the US investment bank Lehman Brothers in 2008. Basically, if you have invested money into shares in British businesses, you aren’t likely to get much back now. People will be panicking and investors from abroad will be pulling their money out of the country, likely leading to a sticky downward spiral for Britain’s financial state. Bank shares and housing builders (the massive ones that put complexes up everywhere) were among the worst hit. They reported losses of as much as 40% and Barclays is down by 18%.
However, like only MP’s could do, there have been some pretty entertaining insults going on surrounding the Brexit debate. Labour MP, Chris Bryant, has called Ed Miliband a “tosspot” for having a reluctant attitude to the Remain campaign and leaving the Labour party in “a state”. He also said he “might go and punch him”, fisticuffs at dawn style.
Back to serious stuff. Currently it is a very unsure time for Britain. There are already talks of Scotland wanting to re-do their referendum to leave us too. Scotland voted massively in favour of remain, so if they become independent from Britain they can re-enter the EU as their own country. Nicola Sturgeon has heavily suggested she will action a 2nd referendum very soon.
The world will be watching very closely as we navigate the unknown, as they have done during the whole Brexit saga. But, there is still a small glimmer of staying. You should know that, although this is a democracy and all that, the Government know that sometimes the people maybe don’t make the best decisions, so there is this small clause that they can over-ride the result of a referendum. Problem is, it’s unlikely the people would react well to that and this could lead to major civil disruption. All in all, it’s looking like a dark and uncertain future for our country.