The EU Withdrawal Bill began its passage today (Tuesday 30th January 2018) through the United Kingdom’s House of Lords, an unelected upper chamber of the UK’s Parliament, ‘necessary’, as the constitution stands, for the ‘safe’ passage of new laws in this country.
One of this House’s members has apparently indicated that ninety per cent of its members who have expressed a wish to join the debate on the Bill’s passing, will likely oppose the Bill in its present form, ‘...on legal, constitutional or political grounds’.
The Referendum on whether or not the United Kingdom should leave the European Union was clear in its result. That led to what we now know as ‘Brexit’ and where we are today, a between-time and still an ongoing process that has essentially seen much attempt over the past year or so to ridicule what those sensible voters achieved the majority view on, in 2016. Clearly, these blessed people presented a collective and very personal opinion to our government and to the mess that is the European Union. That should have been sufficient by itself to avoid any challenge to the process. But no. That was too easy.
Opening my trusty Collins (1986) dictionary, the word ‘Referendum’ is defined as:
‘1. submission of an issue of public importance to the direct vote of the electorate.
2. a vote on such a measure.’
The two clearly go hand in hand.
There follows this:
‘[C19: from Latin: something to be carried back...]’.
There are some members of the House of Lords (it matters not who they are) who have indicated that they would support a second referendum, on Brexit.
A ‘second referendum’ is, by definition, an impossibility.
This is so because:
(i) if that is held and if (every-god-which-may-be-out-there-forbid) the majority vote goes the other way, it cannot be that this second result cancels the first, because to have a referendum that overturns the previous referendum is simply unconstitutional and impossible. A majority-voted decision can therefore never be overturned;
(I) it will therefore have to be a referendum, again on the basic question as to whether the United Kingdom remains in the European Union. It is dressed up by most who are in favour of this way forward by them proposing a vote on the final Brexit deal - but that is the same, in effect.
And there, we have an equal problem. How can any vote, adopting the above dictionary-definition of ‘Referendum’, be possible? The definition there does not extend, as it might - to add the words (at either 1. or 2. above - it matters not) ‘...until another referendum takes place and cancels it’, does it? ‘Referendum’ is a singular word in and by its nature, character and meaning, which is what most attach to the word anyway.,
Our shambolic governmental system and those within and above it should therefore accept, once and for all, that none within their despised ranks should even dare to argue the toss with what was, after all, a government-invited question to its voters. Those above and within our government, who have well and truly had their noses pushed out of joint, should finally accept perhaps that it is not about them or their opinions. They matter not. They never have.
People are hacked off with all of this, with the system, with all of them, especially when words like ‘...threaten to amend [the Bill]...’ and ‘...[the Bill] is not fit for purpose...’ are bandied about by those ‘in power’; those who wish the United Kingdom to remain within the European Union.
That perception of those ‘above’, held now by an increasing number of everyday people, and with every passing day, is perhaps a good reason why most voted to leave the European Union in the first place.
If we, as a society per se, decide to carry something back, we should not be obliged to bring it forward again, at the behest of a number of whining individuals who wish to invoke that process ‘...on legal, constitutional or political grounds’ - on the basis that this is simply their opinion. It can be nothing more, unless they do admit one day that they are controlled by ‘the hidden hand’.
‘Legally’, the referendum in 2016 was legal.
‘Constitutionally’, the referendum in 2016 was constitutional.
‘Politically’, well, we should ignore this word - because it is never a correct word.
And so, finally, the question must be this:
Do and should we let personal opinions defeat opinionated persons?
The answer? The answer is ‘Yes and no’.
It depends who we see as which and which happens to be who. And that is and must remain our key quandary...and our everlasting quest.
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