Bryan Gould is a cloth-cap socialist and failed politician.
It is safe to say he is a Euro-skeptic, after opposing the Maastricht Treaty and finally resigning as an MP in protest against Labour’s support for the European Exchange Rate Mechanism. The EU result, where 52% of the voting public rejected staying in the EU, will be the first time that Bryan Gould has been on a winning side for some time.
Among the many hysterical reactions to the Brexit decision, a particular post on Facebook caught my attention. The author was convinced that the decision to leave was the equivalent of the Visigoths’ sacking of Rome; civilisation itself was apparently in its last days.
It did not seem to occur to him that the decision to leave the EU was the product of a vote in which a majority of his fellow-citizens had simply, as part of their democratic right, acted on a view, or views, on a subject of interest to the whole community, that were just as valid as, but different from, his own. The barbarians whom he castigated were not invaders from elsewhere; they were Britons like him, enjoying the same right as he had to consider the issues and express a view. It is what is called democracy.
The fury and hatred aroused by the discovery that there was actually a majority that disagreed with those who thought that they alone were capable of reaching the right and proper decision – and the vitriol with which those sentiments are expressed – provides us with an insight into the mentality of many of those who simply could not believe that any view other than theirs was possible.