Young people have been shafted again. I’m furious and you should be too
Nigel is laughing at us all
This morning we all woke up to utter chaos.
The Leave campaign recorded a historic victory with 52 per cent of the vote, the pound hit its lowest level since 1985 – a slump more than twice as bad as “Black Wednesday” – £200 billion was wiped off UK stocks in under two hours, David Cameron resigned and our Facebook news feeds were clogged with everyone prophesying the four horsemen of the apocalypse.
But it’s all OK, because we live in a democracy and we voted for this. Right? Try again.
75 per cent of 18-24 year olds voted to remain in the EU whereas 61 per centof those aged over 65, the generation who this will affect the least, voted to leave. The older generation have voted for us to leave the club that buys almost half of our exports. They have opted for an uncertain future: a future we don’t want.
We have lost the right to live and work in 27 other European countries because of the actions of a generation who will not face the repercussions.
A generation who have handed us a pensions black-hole. Who will expect us to pay the £309.4 billion pensions deficit to allow them to keep their final salary pension schemes.
A generation who have handed us a government debt of £1.56 trillion.
A generation who were given free university education yet expect us to come out with, on average, £44,000 worth of debt.
A generation who could easily climb onto the property ladder, whereas for us, “generation rent”, a first time buyer in London will have to earn £106,000 per year to afford the average first time buyers property by 2020.
An ageing generation who will put even further strain on a National Health Service which, as we’ve all known for years, is unsustainable.
So what are we faced with?
David Cameron will have resigned by October, paving the way for Boris Johnson to take the reins – a man who was sacked by The Times for making up a quote and who conspired to help an old school friend, convicted of insurance fraud, to find and beat up a journalist. Jeremy Corbyn’s future is also uncertain as a result of what Tim Farron called his “abject failure to take this seriously”, which played a large role in Labour voters opting for Brexit.
The unity of the United Kingdom is also in question. Nicola Sturgeon has already suggested that a second Scottish independence vote is “highly likely” after 62 per cent voted to remain and Sinn Fein has called for a referendum on Irish reunification after 56 per cent in Northern Ireland voted to stay in.
The European Union has many failings, we have all freely admitted that. But 75 per cent of the younger generation voted to remain, as it represents a movement towards a more globalised world and reforming something from within is far more appealing than jumping into the abyss.
Signing petitions to call for another referendum is childish and belies our intelligence. If we take anything from this referendum, it is that we must do more as a generation. Feeling disenfranchised and apathetic only serves to weaken our political strength and allows the political elite to shaft us with relative impunity.
We’ve known this for too long, but this may just be the catalyst we need to do something about it.