It is evident that at this particular moment, momentous choices are facing the Americans and the British people.
Of course every human being has to make choices all the time, some of them trivial, some of them of great importance to us personally. But every now and then huge and important choices take over our national lives.
A year ago this happened in Scotland with the referendum on a choice for independence or whether to stay within the United Kingdom. Inevitably great tension was caused by having to make this decision, communities were divided, violence broke out, and families went their different ways. It was a difficult time and after the choice was made it left the Scots in a wounded state, wounds that will take a long time to heal.
Now the Americans are facing a similarly difficult time. Their next choice of President is already tearing the country apart and polarizing the nation more than ever. It is no longer just a choice between the Republicans and the Democrats, it is a longing for real change, to go totally outside the box. The fact that Trump has received such support when he is not a politician at all, is significant and shows that the Americans want a different kind of man in power. Whatever our personal feelings about the man – and mine are definitely not of approval – the choices are being made and it is very likely that the desire for something different will make Trump the candidate. But is this an informed choice? Have the Americans really thought of the consequences of their actions. It seems to be all in the heart, rather than the head. “Make America great again” is the cry. This is meaningless without facts to show how this is to be done. It merely appeals to the emotions and the Americans are following in droves believing and hoping it to be true.
In the UK we are facing a similar momentous choice with another referendum, this time, whether to leave the EU or stay in it. Already this is becoming as distasteful as the American Presidential race. The politicians are taking over and are playing a dirty game. They’ve even tried to involve the Queen – a move that only shows how desperate they are and how low they can stoop.
It is impossible to make a choice in these circumstances. The propaganda of staying in consists of the fearful consequences of what will happen if we leave. This may be fact and it may be true – but we also need to know what good will be done and improvements made to improve the EU in the future if we stay in.
The propaganda of coming out are vague slogans about keeping Britain for the British, of getting back our freedom, ridding ourselves of all the red tape of Brussels etc. – but never a word is given of the way this is to be done, how long it will take, the alternatives that can be set up, or, most importantly of all, the consequences for every person in the UK if this huge step were to happen.
Both sides are playing the migration card – which is the most distasteful aspect of it all.
So – I hope our politicians will come to their senses and give us some actual information, so that we can make an informed choice. If this huge choice is to be entrusted to the British public – we need to know all the consequences for either staying in or leaving.
It will be a relief to get back to simple choices, – no more difficult than deciding whether to take an umbrella when going out, or what vegetables to get in for supper!