If you’ve been following the news wherever you are you may have come across a few news articles discussing something known as Brexit.
Recently it’s been called many other things as well. It’s the latest target in an endless global game of pin the tail on the donkey.
I sometimes feel when I read the news that it’s written by people who don’t get enough sleep and their lack of sleep makes them prone to fearing their own shadow and they’re passing that fear on.
There’s a hint of tabloid in every headline, panic in the paragraphs, with stiff sentences and heady harsh words. The focus is on catastrophe, the worst side of the situation, the negative implications, and complaining about everything and everyone. The glass is empty and everyone is fighting over the last drop.
It seems as though people are going through the five stages of grief:
At least that’s what it looks like if you read the news, social media, get your information from others.
Certain reports makes it sound like the pro-leavers are now being hunted by the pro-remainers who are shouting ‘Not in my Name!’ as they stab the people who didn’t agree with them with pitchforks (or selfie sticks). If you can’t win the vote one way, maybe you can win it another way?
It’s okay to be bigoted against racists, right?
And since all pro-leavers are judged to have voted to leave because they’re racists this makes the pro-remainers feel righteous in their vocal vitriol against them.
Hating haters is justified and solves the problems which hate causes.
Everyone is accusing everyone else of giving in to fear and believing lies.
The UK is tearing up and tearing itself apart. Or at least that’s how it sounds when you look at it from a media perspective.
Locally though things seem to be business and life as usual with the main disruption being caused by the flash floods we’ve had in the past couple of days rather than rioting and anarchy in the streets. But I do live in a sparsely populated area where most people voted to leave… so, there’s that to consider.
One of the online issues about Brexit which stood out for me was the ‘youth of today’ claiming that the majority (64%) of them had voted to remain and that their vote was drowned out by the ‘old people of today’ who the youth seem to think have ‘ruined the future’ for them. Apparently ‘old people’ (which seems to include anyone in their mid-40’s and upwards) will all die soon and therefore their vote shouldn’t count as they won’t live long enough to have to deal with the consequences of their actions.
The way it was ‘voiced’ in the media made it sound like the ‘youth of today’ thought that anyone ‘old’ did not have a right to an opinion (or a life) and should have voted for the next generation rather than their own. It sounded a bit narcissistic, entitled, arrogant… but the media makes everything and everyone sound that way.
When did being effed over by the generations before you stop being a regular rite of passage?
That filled me with pathos and bathos simultaneously as I recalled how I felt and what I thought when I was the ‘youth of the day’.
The shit the generations before you get up to always feels likes it’s ruining everything for you and that the world you’re inheriting is a bloody mess… if only they’d think of you before they made a move, if only they’d stop being so selfish thinking about themselves instead of about you and what you want and need… their life isn’t theirs it’s yours, it’s about you and not about them! Do these old people not realise they’re almost at death’s door while you’ve only just stepped over the threshold of life
In my youth the ‘old people’ were involved in ‘Star Wars’ and every day was another round of who will nuke who first. I don’t remember too much about the politics of that time because I was too far up my own young arse, worried about another type of politics (fitting into my social group by bending over backwards until I broke, transforming myself into who I was not, saying, doing, being what I was supposed to according to my peers who based their rules and views on their peers who based them on their peers… stuff like that), thought I knew everything and was convinced that everyone else didn’t know anything, especially not those older than me who were planning on destroying the world so that if I survived I’d get to live in a nuclear wasteland (fighting mutated beings and others for food, drink and a roof over my head to protect me from radiation rain)… I do remember scouring a world map to try and figure out the safest place to live to survive a nuclear blast (these days I wonder why I wanted to survive such a thing, but… I guess that’s primal instinct at work).
Then Chernobyl happened and it made me aware that you can’t hide from that kind of change because the world turns and keeps turning. Nuclear meltdown has nuclear fallout which forms into a thick cloud that rains its toxic particles down on everyone no matter where you are… or who you are.
Even a fallout shelter (or a Bond villain’s hideout) isn’t the ideal place to be, especially if it’s full of other people who are all scared shitless about the future which is no longer the one they thought they had ahead of them (want to hear god or whatever laugh – tell him or her or whatever your plans). All their plans are ruined and it’s not their fault, it’s always someone else’s fault. And there are only a few cans of water and food, not enough for everyone but everyone wants it.
Just when you think you’re safe… you find the safe you’re in has limited amounts of oxygen and at some point you either get out or you suffocate.
If I sound like I was pro-leave… I wasn’t. I wasn’t pro-remain either.
I figured that we’d probably remain because people tend to go with ‘better the devil you know than the one you don’t know”, but if we didn’t…
I was the worst kind of human, the one who sits on the fence and waits for others to make a decision, then waits a bit more for the panic and fighting after the decision which would probably occur regardless of the decision) to die down, then waits a bit more… then gets on with whatever life is in the now.
I’d accept and adapt to whatever comes.
I wasn’t always a fence sitter, nor did I adapt and accept. I used to get stuck in to the fight… I loved fighting, it was almost easier than breathing, it was breathing… thinking that one way was right and the other was wrong… then I experienced that thing known as finding out that what you believed was right had a lot of wrong to it and that what you thought was wrong had a lot of right to it.
And ultimately the universe doesn’t give an eff what you believe or think, and neither do other people… they only care about what they believe and think and your view is either for or against their view, and they’ll make use of your view either way to promote theirs.
When I was younger I didn’t know what I know now that I’m older… which is that I really don’t know anything I just think I know stuff and that illusion makes me think that the stuff I know needs other people to know it too the way that I know it (smartest person in the planetary room syndrome) and if they don’t know it I need to use a hammer on their heads to make them know it (and they think the same thing about themselves and me, and that I need to unknow what I know and know what they know).
When I was younger I waited for the moment when it would be ‘my turn’ to make rules and make a difference… I always thought that would be when I was older, but now that I’m older… apparently it’s still not ‘my turn’ because now what was once all about being older is all about being younger. I guess I missed the small moment when I was just the right age on the right side in the right place at the right time…
But strangely enough I no longer care that I missed my mark or making my mark.
Perhaps because it’s not about me… it never was… it’s not about you either… it never was…
It’s about us… and us is very hard for us to do consciously, but we do it unconsciously…
We’re all in this together whether we’re together in this or not…
I haven’t been out of my house since the results of the vote, partly due to local flooding and partly because I had no personal reasons to go out, but today I’m going to a community party which will… be interesting and will maybe give me a better idea of the ‘mood of the people’ than the media…
There will be some funfair games at this local event, not sure if there’ll be a duck the pro-leavers or pro-remainers in the (boiling) water option, hopefully not because… no one wins those kinds of games even if for a second they feel victorious.
Victory is fleeting… the real meat and potatoes of life is in the work we do together to sort the messes we make as humans out.
Or something like that…
Love it, them, others, yourself or hate it, them, others yourself…