Over the past three or so years, us Brexiteers have been labelled with all sorts of names such as fascists and racists, among others. There is an ever-growing perception that we are all over 80, own grand estates and are on the far-right wing of the political spectrum; let me tell you we are not! I have spoken to people from all backgrounds and demographics to answer one simple question of 'why do you support Brexit?' This is the start of a series of articles to answer this question.
The first person I chatted to was Alice Grant, a young Brexiteer, who like myself, is still a student. She and her sister, Beatrice, have actively campaigned for Leave Means Leave as well as the Brexit Party. Alice told me that Mr Farage "was the first politician who had inspired (her) to research the true nature of the European project", and that the former UKIP leader was the only one whom she felt "stood up for our great nation to the EU fanatics who constantly insult us". Alice feels strongly that people like Mr Juncker, Ms von der Leyen, Mr Tusk and Mr Barnier to name a few have been attempting to take away our sovereignty and democracy for years now. Both sisters are now completely committed to the cause and have attended various rallies organised by Leave Means Leave such as the March to Leave and the Parliament Square Brexit Betrayal demonstration on 29th March.
Alice went onto say how was Mrs Thatcher inspired her with "her no nonsense, pragmatic policies" and her ability to "never caving in despite overwhelming pressure and opposition", something she feels we should be doing today when it comes to Europe. Thatcher didn't destroy industry but "made it more efficient, more cost effective and that was right for that era", however, now we should be looking into "reviving British industries like the steel and coal industry with new technology, such as mining facilities with carbon capture". She also believes that it is the EU who on the other hand is "successfully destroying British industries as well as our farming, agriculture and fishing".
She also believes that "Brexit is the first step towards freedom and is vital for the liberation of our nation; once free from Brussels we can control our borders and how our laws are made". Additionally, "The EU is heading towards the creation of a United States of Europe which will never create prosperity for the peoples of Europe. It is a sinking ship. When we leave, our laws will be made at a national level, our democratically elected politicians will be able to implement policies we want to see. We will be the masters of our own future and no longer subservient to Brussels." I couldn't have said it better myself and this is the kind of optimism we so desperately need from younger people, rather than the dare I say it, misinformed middle class socialists that we see on People's Vote marches, Extinction Rebellion protests and at Glastonbury shouting **** Boris because some so-called celebrity told them to do so who is in fact a product of capitalism, charging over £70 per ticket, but that's another matter!
Alice, a former Conservative Party member now hopes the incoming PM can, in the words of Nigel Farage "have the courage and conviction" to deliver Brexit by 31st October, and I think we all sincerely agree that he needs to. After defecting to the newly established Brexit party, Alice now thinks her "faith in the Tory Party might even be restored if Boris takes us out with a clean Brexit". She focused on a point that many Party members felt under Theresa May's leadership that "the Conservative Party no longer represented real conservative values and had sold out the British people, first with the Treaty of Accession to the then Common Market, and now with the Withdrawal Agreement, which is another legally binding EU treaty in disguise". Ms Grant also hopes to see Mr Farage do a deal with the Prime Minister but still fears Mr Johnson may only "tweak the WA". The hope is to "leave on no deal for the good of democracy, and thus to restore full control of our borders, and to fully end jurisdiction by a foreign power, that is the EU, on our land". The Brexit vote was seen as a rebellion against the establishment who campaigned for remain, a rebellion against the Tony Blairs, David Camerons, Alistair Campbells, Gordon Browns and Michael Heseltines of the world "and others who have now shown us their utter disrespect not only for the British voters, but for the principle of democracy".
When the subject of left wing, pro-Remain bias in the education system came up it was something we could both relate to, for myself in the North East being Conservative and pro-Brexit certainly puts me in a minority, Alice told me how there are only "three Brexiteers in a year of 180 people and this is partially because the educational system endlessly peddles the EU agenda, and turns young people into indoctrinated sheep who capitulate to authority rather than doing research from themselves and making up their own minds". Staying on the subject of education, it was brought up that nowadays, children are taught how to pass exams rather than actual content where "repetition, memory and how to regurgitate 'facts' are the skills which are learned. Then of course we aren't being taught about British history, very little about the British constitution, almost nothing on The Troubles or about political reform in the 1980s. Alice's "worst fear is that socialism will be made publicly acceptable" and that is a fear I share, although not enough young people seem to do so. "The socialist model has failed consistently. The ideology is flawed and so in practice, it fails. The socialist promise of an 'equal society' comes at the price of economic ruin, as evident in Venezuela, Cuba, the Soviet Union and North Korea. That's why those who promote socialism are usually young, ignorant, privileged students who have never had a real job, never had the courage to be an entrepreneur, never had to navigate building a business."
It is capitalism that has succeeded globally and works perfectly well today, Alice believes that the "EU has adopted a left-wing model of totalitarianism in order to enforce its control of the people, yet it is corporatist in ideology and practice. It's certainly not a capitalist project as we've been led to believe, as it has obfuscated entrepreneurship and does not support small or medium sized business with its wave of punishing regulations in favour of those big firms who aren't affected by this red tape. It only caters for big money multinationals who are draining the resources of this planet and have the biggest hand in the whole project."
On the subject of the Iron Lady, we chatted how" she was manipulated into signing the Single European Act, by her cabinet and advisers. She was a magnificent politician who loved our country, our culture and traditions and she genuinely thought she could make Europe work for us. However, by the time of the famous Bruges Speech, she had realised the enormity of the betrayal to our nation by Ted Heath in 1972, and the nefarious consequences for Britain's sovereignty and democracy. She was very brave to stand up and speak out about it to the world."
The final point was one that I'm sure we can all agree with, the fact that "The political class and the establishment lost their scaremongering campaign to remain. The British people voted for Brexit and our vote must be upheld. Our ancestors, many of them young people our age, fought and gave up their lives for our freedom, and it's our duty to respect their sacrifice by respecting our right to democracy. The will of the people must not be ignored."
Alice is just one example of the passionate young Brexiteers we have who are supporting our cause, after all we are on the winning side of history, it is the will of the people to leave the European Union and it is in everybody's best interests to have a fantastic, prosperous economy which can only be established through free markets and not state-run industry, regulation and intervention.
My Twitter and Instagram are @ethan_thoburn and Alice's is @missalicegrant