It’s 6:30pm. January 2020. In a few hours time the UK will leave the EU. Liverpool as a majority did not choose to leave. We were proud to be part of league of nations that worked together for the good of one another.
This is because Liverpool has always celebrated and engaged with other cultures. Has intertwined them into our own DNA. They became part of us and us of them. We as an outward-looking city on the edge of England.
I fully believe that the EU has worked for the benefit of all of us. It’s overseen our human rights. Stopped the worst societal crimes.
When our own government has left us on the vine to whither, the EU has nourished us and made us vital. It made us European Capital of Culture 2008. A shot in the arm at the most important time – it saved us from the great recession. Our economy was bolstered by an influx of cash. And as a city we celebrated life in the face of the fiscal calamity caused outside by greedy bankers in London’s square mile and on Wall Street.
And now, as the hours pass and our exit from the EU draws near – we must band together. We must be each other’s eyes and ears. We must stand together against oppression. Oppression from our own government. Who has left Liverpool out of the HS2 and 3 high-speed rail schemes. Who has systematically sold off our NHS to private companies. Who has fraternised with the cult of TRUMPISM – the school bullies in the playground who tell us that if we do a trade deal with the US, we “must include chlorinated chicken” into our food chain or there will be no deal.
We cannot accept this. We cannot allow our rights to be eroded and our standards to be taken away.
We are an enclave. A safe place. A place that is an example for the rest of the UK. To fight against the wrongs of the world. To stand up and say we value internationalism. A movement towards peace and freedom and prosperity for all, not for the few.
We must fight to survive. To thrive. To bring about a fairer government. To uphold our values of honesty and decency.
Who knows – maybe one day the UK will re-join the EU. I do hope that is true.
30th January 2020 by