Britain's exit from the European Union, ushered by a majority of Leave votes, is an opportunity to build a better Britain.
Not a better Britain, according to historian Bess Rhodes, but a kind and more caring Britain.
Speaking at the Bruges Group's "Deal or No Deal" conference on Nov. 4, Rhodes admitted she voted to remain in the EU. After the results of the referendum, she reflected on the possibilities offered by the vote.
Much of the coverage on Brexit is divisive and unkind towards Leave voters. Yet, the EU's response to U.K.'s free and fair election to Leave is even more shocking, Rhodes said.
She began understanding the Leave decision in a new light. Voters were calling for a stronger society, a healthcare system capable of caring for the sick and the weak. Brexit allows additional funding for the NHS, designed to tend to the wellbeing of its community.
"The EU is at its worst, most bureaucratic and narrow minded," Rhodes said. "Rather than the money going to Brussels, [voters] wanted it to go to the weakest, most disadvantaged members of society."
The U.K. will be able to put in place more positive relationships with other countries after leaving the EU. Brussels restrains the way Britain interacts with nations such as the Commonwealth.
Finally, Brexit signals a chance to revitalize our relationship with the environment, Rhodes said. Brussels dictates U.K.'s policies towards land and fishing. It's too far removed from the on-the-ground reality.
"It was ordinary people who brought Brexit, it wasn't by people in power," Rhodes said. "It is the ordinary people who should shape it."