A C Grayling has the perfect response to flawed arguments of Brexiteers

PUBLISHED: 17:15 17 December 2016 | UPDATED: 17:18 17 December 2016

(David Dibert)

(David Dibert)


Things just got sassy

Professor AC Grayling has waged a tireless campaign against the flawed arguments of Brexiteers. In his latest letter, sent to all MPs, he makes a very simple demand of them


Dear MP,

You are a representative of your constituents, and – as one who deliberates and votes on legislation affecting the whole country – of the interests of the whole country too.

On December 7, 2016 you chose not to be a representative of the interests of the whole country, but instead to be a representative of 17 million of the UK’s 65m population. You did this by voting for the Government’s amendment demanding a trigger of Article 50 by the end of March 2017, (a) against the better judgment of the majority of sitting MPs who campaigned for Remain in the summer of 2016, yourself probably included unless you are one of the admirable 89 who stood up and were counted, or the fewer than 89 hard-line Brexiters who are trying to steal the country from its own people, and (b) without knowing anything about what a Brexit would involve for the economy, the rights of citizens, the future of our young people, and Europe itself.

You have gone along with UKIP and the Tory Right, the Daily Mail, Daily Express, Sun and Rupert Murdoch, in supporting their vision of our country, a vision they persuaded 17m out of our population of 65m to vote for.

If you are follower of facts, which alas is not something that can be taken for granted in these palmy days it seems, you will know that even among the electorate who voted on June 23 there is now no longer a majority for Brexit. In electing yourselves as representatives of the interests of the 17m and not of the 65m population of the whole country, you are doubly in service to a minority of your fellow citizens.

If you are any sort of democrat, not just the ‘true democrat’ who will regard 37% of the British electorate as an overwhelming majority (which you do because you hold your seat by the same percentage courtesy of our dreadful electoral system, and therefore have got into the bad habit of regarding minorities as majorities) – if you are any sort of democrat, let alone the ‘true democrat’ who regards a non-binding advisory referendum as a hard-as-steel binding mandating referendum that cannot be opposed for fear of the heavens falling in – if you are any sort of democrat at all, and if you allow the madness of Brexit to proceed any further along the wrecking trail it has already laid, then there is one very important thing that you will do: namely, give us the British people another referendum on the terms of any ‘Brexit Deal’ in which one of the options is: Remain in the EU.

I repeat: as democrats, ‘true’ or otherwise, you will give us the British people another referendum on the terms of any ‘Brexit Deal’ in which one of the options is: Remain in the EU.

I write to ask whether you would give a guarantee to the country and your electors that you will do this. It is a simple thing to ask of anyone whose choices and actions have been dictated by a ‘truly democratic’ response to the June 23, 2016 referendum. It is also – but does this recommend it, in these days? – common sense.

Professor AC Grayling, Master, New College of the Humanities

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