[FROM THE PAPER] Brexit Debated

By Megan Critchley - Comment Editor

Will we stay? Will we go? The EU Referendum is on most people’s mind. Two UCLan Students argue out to remain or stay…


Won’t EU Stay With Me? – Joe Youngfarage

On the 5th June 1975, the will of the British people was heard, and we committed to the joining of the European Economic Community, the precursor to the European Union. There are plenty of people unhappy with this, but we’re now holding a second referendum – should we remain in or leave the European Union?

The biggest thing that Leave say is “We can still trade with the European Union”. Well, perhaps we can. But think of it like this – after spending a considerable amount of time throwing toys out of the pram, and then telling the EU we want nothing to do with it, are they really likely to open a trade deal between us?

It’s a very risky game to be playing. After such a fragile and slow economic recovery, do you really want to gamble that away to gain a set of circumstances that both sides have admitted nobody can predict?
We all know someone that went to Malaga, got absolutely wasted, and needed to go to hospital because they fell over, walked in to a lamp post, or something similar. If we did leave the EU, your holiday would suddenly get a lot more expensive. Visas, airline tariffs, emergency medical care – these will all add up and could add hundreds to the cost of an already expensive trip.

Of the last thousand years, we have had 70 of true peace. It’s been these 70 years since the Second World War when European co-operation has really come into its own, and supported numerous countries in the transition from dictatorship to democracy, whether it be a fascist dictatorship like Franco in Spain, or a communist dictatorship, like that of Ceausescu in Romania. The European Union has an incredible history of making sure that people are free, secure, and safe.

You may hear about things like a man being granted asylum because he had a cat – these arguments are, to be blunt, scaremongering lies. There are a huge number of institutions that have ‘Europe’ in their name. The Council of Europe, the European Convention of Human Rights, the European Court of Human Rights. None of these have anything to do with the European Union whatsoever. A vote to leave for these reasons is truly cutting off your nose to spite your face.

The arts receive huge amounts of funding from the EU, as do less developed places. The Adelphi Quarter of Preston, home to the Adelphi pub, Three Monkeys, and the library, has received masses of funding from the EU to regenerate it. Would you really tell the most economically deprived places in the country that they have to shut up and deal with crumbling, outdated infrastructure?

I can’t make you vote a certain way. But I hope that these little nuggets of information have made your decision far easier. Vote for peace. Vote for prosperity. Vote Remain.

I Think We Better Leave Right Now – James Hofstetter

brexit_-_Google_Search_-_2015-08-18_22.25.30There are two sides to this debate, the remain and the leave and for me the only option is to leave. I am a business student so I do see and understand the points the remain side bring however the leave side can combat any and all of their points.

The big argument to leave the EU is that we will save money originally in membership fee to the EU. Last year we paid £13 Billion in and received £4.5 Billion worth of spending out meaning our net cost to join the EU currently stands at £8.5 Billion. This money could be better spent elsewhere, within the UK, to support our services and economy.

There is an argument that trade will be affected if we leave the EU, this is true to an extent. Trade won’t look the same as it does now, currently 50% of our exports are to the EU. If we enact the Article to leave the EU we are given two years to repeal, amend, pass legislation and renegotiate on treaties and trade agreements. This does not mean that we are going to lose trade to these countries, in fact most likely trade will not be dramatically affected. This is called comparative advantage in Economics, we have something they want, they have something we want and we make a trade to get it. If it can work for the Swiss, the Norwegians and Icelandic’s then why can’t it work for us? Alongside this issue, we have the commonwealth, we could use and create agreements within this circle and take advantage of this opportunity

One side that is being pushed by the media under control of the remain side is that the leave campaign want to shut the borders completely and lock all EU people out. That’s the not the case, we support immigration but it shouldn’t be allowed at the extent it is now. Leaving the EU does not prevent you from going to another country, it just means you have to get a Visa like anybody visiting any other country outside the EU would. To go to the U.S, one of the biggest countries in the world requires a visa, an electronic one that can be done online for travel. Nicky Morgan claimed that young people would be worse off because they can’t “Travel Freely” any more, that claim is rubbish. They can still travel and at the extent they did previously. The commonwealth nations of Canada, Australia and New Zealand each individually supported a potential Brexit, they want to create an agreement between the big four nations of the commonwealth for free movement and trade between these four, these three nations are often where people want to most travel to and vice versa. Immigration is not an issue of Brexit, illegal immigration has and always will be the main problem, not normal immigration.

There is a lot of uncertainty about what would happen if we left the EU, this much is true, we don’t know what will immediately happen, equally we don’t know what is going to happen if we stay in the EU. No one can predict the future and how our country is going to look afterwards but taking a step forward always can be uncertain. We should always look to improve, not just stick to what we know because we understand it. We are all studying a degree at university to better ourselves and improve, the country and the EU are similar, and the country can improve and to do that it needs to take a step forward, shed the EU and build the country better.

In 1975, 41 years ago, the UK voted to remain in the EU, this generation that voted then has now gradually got older, they have seen the EU completely through their lifetime. They must be seeing something now due to the fact that leaving the EU is highest in the over 60’s. This shows that those who originally voted it in, don’t believe in it any more, they have seen everything that has happened with it and don’t see that vision. Originally the goal of the EU was to have a United States of Europe, we are a massive mix of cultures and heritage, and closer integration risks losing that. We should be protecting the things that make and have made Britain British.

Students have always been a big part of the EU, a lot of students come here to study from the EU and there is no one saying that a deal can’t be made to make sure that the rates stay the same, that they don’t change. Please on June the 23rd, go to the polls and vote Leave!

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