Brexit Blog: A nasty campaign

Added about 2 years ago by Kevin Carey

In our Brexit Blog series, authors reflect on how, as a Christian nation, we can respond to the challenges and opportunities of leaving the European Union.

Note: Sacristy Press is politically – as well as doctrinally – neutral and does not necessarily share the views expressed here.

Kevin Carey – Chairman of RNIB (Royal National Institute for Blind People)

It is massively ironic that Brexit took place a week before the commemoration of the Battle of the Somme. For Christians, pooled sovereignty is a formalist, shallow response to Jesus who called for love; but even at the shallowest level, Christians support collaboration rather than competition.

As one of the richer countries of the EU, of course we are net contributors; that's the whole idea of sharing responsibility. That money was used for such good causes as shoring up newly democratic Eastern European countries after the Berlin wall came down; had we not done this properly, we would have had to raise our defence budget.

At root, however, ever deeper than the hatred of foreigners, there was a core selfishness which informed the debate: Brexiteers wanted all the benefits of the EU without paying anything for them. They blamed our ills of many years on others, particularly the EU, rather than on ourselves. Whose fault is it that our old industrial towns and cities are rotting? Whose fault is it that the gap between the very rich and the very poor is widening, with the “middle class” being hollowed out as its living standard fall and as its children can’t afford a house? Whose fault is it, for that matter, that we're not building enough houses?

The Brexit campaign was as nasty as anything I've experienced in my life in working in more than 80 countries and it is shocking to me that any Christian could even have contemplated voting for it. I take literally the words of The Lord's Prayer which say: “Thy kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven” and those words will be much more difficult to realise outside the EU than in.

Kevin Carey is author of The Judas Church and several other books published by Sacristy Press.

What do you think? Have your say by commenting below, or read our other Brexit Blogs.

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