Sunday, July 3, 2016

We're on a hell slide ... help us, help us!

At the peak of a windy but wonderful evening in Belfast, Northern Island, on June 25 2016 I was singing these words (9/15ths by Biffy Clyro) back at my favorite band from the top of my lungs taking them very seriously and literally. Obviously guitarist Mike Vennart playing a few arm lengths away from me felt the same thing in the same moment because he posted this after the show:

Mike Vennart ‏@Vennart  Jun 26
Most cathartic version of 9/15s I've ever played tonight in Belfast.

I will try not to write too much about the political background of what is going on in the UK. I could but it all cost me so much nerves and energy since the referendum that I spent almost all day today in bed / on couch sleeping. I simply could not take it anymore.

Here my position in very short bullet points.

  • I am an EU citizen living in the UK and I am obviously and logically in the REMAIN camp. I am also aware that almost half of the citizens of the UK are as well (in the meantime maybe even more than 50%). 
  • I do not think everything is great in the EU and how the EU works - far from that - but I strongly believe that leaving the EU is the most stupid idea ever - for the society, for the economy, for every single citizen of the UK and especially for the youth. The effects will be overwhelmingly negative. 
  • There will be no awesome and special deal for the UK - the EU has zero interest in allowing this. Believing there would be one just shows that lots of people including politicians do not understand where the UK stands in a bigger context. They should probably listen more to some of those pesky EU immigrants that seem to be such a thread .. they can offer valuable outside perspective just as these weird folks called experts, too. 
  • Yes, I am very worried for my little self because me living in Glasgow is based on EU laws and regulations and I am worried about the economical impact as it will directly influence my work life and career.
  • I have not given up the last bits of hope as the referendum is not binding. Only a parliamentarian mandate for the PM to invoke Article 50 will be binding. I hope that will never happen although I am aware that this is not a big hope. 
  • I rather live in an independent Scotland that is part of the EU as in an united Great Britain outside of the EU. Is that even an option? I do not know at this moment (depends very much on the position the EU will take on this). Did I want this to be the options I might have to consider? Absolutely not. 
  • To everyone that read the horrible news about the outbreak of xenophobia in the UK towards all kind of people (white with accent, of color with and without accent) and is worried about my well being:  I am fine. The Glaswegians are as friendly as always. I had only one person making a comment and that was my regular taxi driver who always takes me to the airport and he was actually worried what it all means for me and if I was alright. 

I could write a lot more .. for example what an absolute MESS the two biggest UK parties are and how disgusting UKIP is or how incredibly irresponsible the politicians are acting in this situation. I could also give a lecture about parliamentarian vs direct democracy. I mean .. I have a master degree in political science ... and I chose that topic for a reason when I started university, but I want to focus on something else. Something bigger:


It is not just what is going on in the UK. I mean ...  How the hell is Donald Trump a serious presidential candidate? How can we let thousands of people drown in the Mediterranean sea? How can we have hundreds of thousand people in refugee camps under terrible conditions? And how could we let it get so far that millions of people need to leave their destroyed homes saving nothing but their lives .. if they are lucky? Who had the weird idea that said people are a threat and not the victims? How is racism, hate and xenophobia acceptable behavior? How it is a thing that you can get shot at a rock n roll show or dancing with your friends in a night club? Why do people still judge other people for who they love? How do we still allow big companies to destroy our planet and pretend evoking earthquakes (as one example) is a good idea? How do we have a significant concentration of military forces at the Eastern European border of the NATO and it is not even properly in the news? Why could I spend days extending this list nightmare by nightmare, horror story by horror story? How did we end up on this hell slide????

You know, I am learning a lot at the moment and it is probably the first time ever I am sad about learning something. At school in Germany you hear about the Nazis a lot. Questions I never really found answers for despite the many history lessons were  "How could this happen? How did the majority of people not see what was going on? Why did the people who were understanding it not doing more to stop it?" 

I now understand that those people likely felt as helpless as I do now. Communication seems to be pointless, discussions are leading nowhere, lots of people seem to be out of reach of arguments with closed minds and hearts. 

I have no solution, no smart ideas how to stop it. Leading with example is probably the only thing ... trying to be kind to the person next to you, practicing humanity, tolerance and inclusion - and being clear and outspoken about it.

Simon said down from the stage on that windy Saturday last week: "Music makes everything better." He is right - it really does. And it brings people together in the best way possible.

That said .... I will go to bed now, listen to "Medicine" a couple of times and despite all the things that are frightening and sad at the moment I will keep counting down the days to the release of "Ellipsis". We can't let the darkness win and take away the things we love and looking forward to. 

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