Fear and fury over Johnson election grabs British expats and the UK’s youth

Published:  24 Jul at 6 PM
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Tagged: UK, Citizenship, Euro, England
As widely predicted, Boris Johnson is now Britain’s Prime Minister, but UK expats in Europe as well as British youth are being ignored yet again.

British expatriates across Europe are now fearing for their futures due to an election in which they again had no part, and Britain’s youth are heavily criticising the fact that what’s being described as ‘a handful of out-of-touch toffs’ have now succeeded in electing a candidate known to be unstable, erratic and in favour of a no-deal exit from the EU.

Conservative party members number just 160,000, less than one per cent of UK-registered voters, with 99 per cent of the population and all British expats living and working in the EU now having no way of making their fears known to those in government. For those Britons too young to vote in the Brexit referendum but now eligible to have their say, Johnson’s carefully crafted campaign seems like an attack on Britain’s longstanding reputation as a democracy, and for those living in Europe it’s yet another threat to their carefully chosen lives.

No-deal as an option has been rejected not only by the British parliament but also by the majority of the British population, especially since it was trumpeted by Johnson during his election campaign. Apart from demonstrating just how undemocratic the parliamentary process has become, it’s also shown up the House of Commons as totally unrepresentative of the will of the people it’s supposed to represent, whether they live overseas or in the home country. For Britain’s young people as well as for British expats in Europe, the feeling of being alienated from and ignored by government is now stronger than ever.

According to Oscar Redgrave, a 17-year old Briton whose pro-EU campaign group focuses on young voters, UK politicians almost always ignore the sector as, until now, the demographic turnout has been low. He believes now is the time to call for recognition, as those now legally old enough to vote will have to live with the outcome of Brexit and other disastrous policies for the longest time. Another young voter whose family own a working farm is afraid a no-deal scenario will be a disaster for Britain’s farming communities, but is fully aware what today’s youth want and need isn’t even in the picture whether they are able to vote or not.
Many, it seems, are now desperate for a second referendum.

As for the several million British citizens living in EU member states, few of whom had any say in the 2016 referendum, yesterday’s hot news about their entitlement to sue the British government should they lose all their rights may be the only way they can make their views heard and have at least some control over their own futures.
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