When I wrote my last blog entry on this a few weeks ago, most Americans couldn't even tell you what the Brexit was. Now it's a household word. Last Thursday something amazing and historic happened. About 52% of the British voters decided to leave the European Union and reclaim their independence and sovereignty. Contrary to popular reports in the news media right now, this is a very good thing. It's a victory for the Catholic social principle of Subsidiarity. It's a victory for the sovereignty of Britain. It's a victory for the will of the people, and it's a victory for democratic reform. The Brexit proved that when big centralised bureaucratic governments over-reach their boundaries, and impose laws upon people that they never asked for, they can through peaceful democratic means regain their independence. At the risk of raising a few British eyebrows, and I ask that my British readers will forgive my overtly Amerocentric view, the occasion of the Brexit brings to mind another important event in world history...
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
-- Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776
The Brexit was not identical to the independence of the United States from the British Empire, but there were some parallels. As an American, I would be a hypocrite if I denied the British people's right to secede from the European Union, and I would be negligent if I failed to congratulate them for actually doing it. I understand that 48% of Britons chose to stay within the European Union, and this is not an attempt patronise them. I have no desire to "rub it in their faces" as some might presume. I know they have been defeated in a very bitter political fight, and I offer them a gentleman's handshake for a battle well fought. I agree with their desire to be part of a larger economic union, I just disagree with what direction that should be in. We Anglophone people are family. We belong together as such, and we need each other. We need each other a lot more than Europe needs Britain or Britain needs Europe. For far too long Britons have been drawn deeper into a European political union that is flawed at its very foundations, is currently unstable, and is destined to go shipwreck if serious reforms are not soon made to those foundations upon which it is built. The Brexit did not cause those fissures to open. It only revealed that they were already there, and much deeper than anyone expected. For decades now, the popes of Rome have begged the European Union to return to its Christian roots and organise itself accordingly on the principle of Subsidiarity. Those pleads have fallen on deaf ears in Brussels, and across Europe in general. The European Union is now a sinking ship, and Britons will soon thank God that they got off when they did. Perhaps a miracle will happen as a result of the Brexit. Maybe Europeans will now see the deep fissures in the Euro's foundation, and do something to mend them, thus saving the Union and building something more stable for the future. Or, God forbid, they might turn to desperation and attempt to prevent other member-states from leaving by methods of coercion, which once again Britons will thank God for getting out when they did.
Something else has been happening for far too long, and I say this as an American who loves my country. The United States of America has seen itself as something set apart from the rest of the English-speaking world, and this is unacceptable. It is prideful, arrogant, and snobbish. The Brexit will inevitably force many Americans to re-think this attitude. We have come to the aid of Britain in two world wars, and there is a reason for that. We are Anglophone people, part of a global Anglosphere, and we cannot deny that. While America is made up primarily of former Germans (of which I myself am descended), our language and culture is overtly Anglo-Celtic (i.e. British)! I speak very little German, but I am fluent in English. I know almost nothing of my Scandinavian ancestry, of which I am only third-generation Scandinavian-American, but I could speak for hours about British history, law, culture and politics. There is a reason for this. Racial pedigree is not important in America. What matters in America is language and culture, and that my readers is a distinctively British value. The United States of America needs to seriously look into establishing deeper economic and political ties with the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. This doesn't mean exporting our Amerocentric vision to them, but rather re-embracing that part of their culture that made us so great in the first place. The Anglophone people have really matured in the last 200+ years, and it's something Americans could really take a lesson from. For starters, they're not afraid of letting the people's will be heard. In 2014 the British people undertook a referendum in Scotland, which would have determined if Scotland itself could leave the UK and become its own independent nation. The Scottish people chose to stay within the UK by a margin of 55% to 45%, but stop and think about that. What does that say of the British government? Westminster was willing to part with nearly a third of Britain's entire land mass, all in the name of giving their own people independence if that's what they wanted. This is a far cry from where they were 240 years ago, when they went to war to stop the American colonies from breaking away. The United States just isn't there yet. It's doubtful Washington DC would allow a single state to hold an independence referendum today, and it waged a bloody Civil War 150 years ago to stop a number of states from seceding. Another example is healthcare. Every English-speaking country in the world invests in their citizens through a universal healthcare system of some kind, except the United States of America. This is because investing in the health of our own people is a British value, echoed in all Anglophone countries around the world, except the United States. That needs to change. It's a family value and it's a Christian value. America needs to wake up to that. Likewise, Britain is not afraid to admit that it is a Christian nation, founded on Christian principles, and retains a Christian government. That by no means implies that it's a perfect government, and history is replete with examples of failures. Nevertheless, the fact that any government would be willing to admit its Christian character, in this day and age of militant Secularism, is refreshing to say the least. Our own American government could learn a thing or two from this, as well as a number of our American people. Christian values are not Shariah values. Christians are tolerant and compassionate people, who leave non-Christians alone, and let them live in peace. As Britain has proved in the last century, being a Christian nation, with a Christian government, does not mean forbidding atheists bring expressing their views, or making non-religious people go to Church. The atheist and non-religious person is no safer than in a Christian nation with a Christian government. That is just a matter of historical fact now. America needs to remember these things, and now more than ever, America needs to remember that it is an Anglophone nation, with an Anglo-Celtic culture, brought into this world by the colonisation efforts of the British nation. Yes, we are an independent people now, and we won that independence in the American Revolution, but then Canada, Australia and New Zealand are also independent nations as well, having won their independence without firing a shot. We are all independent nations now, and Britain has returned to us as one since the Brexit. Each and every one of us, has now won its own independence, each in different ways, and we all have that in common now. The time has come to draw closer together as separate but equal nations, into united confederacy where each of us helps each other, without telling the other what to do. We can, as a Christian people, learn from the mistakes of the European Union, and build on a more solid foundation that is made with a common language, common Christian principles, and a common Anglo-Celtic culture. That time has come, and we would be foolish to let it slip by.
Last Thursday, something else happened too. Secular Globalism got its first good belt to the mouth, and it's not taking it well. This is why Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton look like somebody just shot their family dog. This is why European leaders are angry and rude. This is why global markets are in a tizzy. Something big has just happened, and it's upset the global trajectory of their New World Order, a global regime run by milti-national corporations, that divide the world into tidy continental trading blocks based on geography, erasing borders, language and culture. The EU was on the trajectory of becoming a tyranny, telling member-states what laws they could keep, and what they had to eliminate. Most notably, in Catholic countries, the EU has been attempting to force them to adopt abortion-on-demand and same-sex "marriage." This in addition to drastic changes to their economic policies, which have left Britain (and many other nations) more impoverished because of them. The Brexit has caused a reset for Britain, giving the British people a fresh new chance to build something better in the long run. For Europe it has brought soul-searching, and hopefully reform eventually. For the globalists, they just lost a lot of money and power, so naturally they're a little upset.
I think the most important thing that could be said right now is to assure everything that everything is going to be okay. The fluctuations in the stock markets are typical. This sort of thing happens every time there's a change in international politics. In a word, it's normal. If there is a recession coming, it won't be because of the Brexit. It will be because of the very instability of European markets Britons sought to escape with the Brexit. If there is a recession coming, it would have come anyway, with or without the Brexit. There is no need to worry about the devaluation of the British pound. That will stabilise in a few years on its own. Besides, the economic apocalypse that globalists were predicting (as a scare tactic) hasn't materialised. If it were going to happen, it would have happened within the first 48 hours of the Brexit. We are well beyond that window now. Fears of a Brexit-induced global economic catastrophe have been greatly exaggerated. It's time for all of us to handle this like the British; chin up and soldier on, brighter days are coming.
Shane Schaetzel is an author of Catholic books and a columnist for Christian print magazines and online publications. He is a freelance writer and the creator of 'CatholicInTheOzarks.com.' Your support is what makes essays like this possible. This essay and all of Shane's Internet resources come to you (ad-free) thanks to the generosity of benefactors. Please consider becoming a benefactor.
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