For that, I am sorry.
I am sorry I did not, as a young person, dig further into the information I was being given and verify it to find the truth.
I am sorry I did not deliver that truth on the doorstep and over cups of tea.
I am sorry that I did not know about and therefore could not take steps to argue against the ruling of the UK by a committee of grey Eurocrats in a room in Brussels.
I’m sorry that I did not find out that a Europe without borders would mean that everyone’s personal security is compromised, that organised crime, a domestic problem that was, generally, relatively gentlemanly and with defined rules and targets, would be taken over by Baltic gangs with no morals or boundaries and with little or no respect for the lives and livelihoods of those around them. London’s gangs were brutal but they tended to function in their own “underworld” not within the world the rest of us inhabit.
I’m sorry that I did not find out that criminals with non-UK origin cannot be regarded as “foreign” and deported because now they hold European Passports and because European Courts tell us who we can and cannot allow to remain in our own country.
I’m sorry that I did not learn that we would see our farmers putting shotguns into their mouths because funding that could have helped their businesses survive was side-lined for the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy.
I’m sorry that I did not learn that the fishing fleets that fed the families of dozens of ports around the UK would be more than decimated under the Common Fisheries Policy that leads to “foreign” ships in British territorial waters while our own fishermen are required to dump edible fish including some that would, if landed, command a premium price, over the side due to quotas imposed by those same Eurocrats.
I’m sorry that I did not learn that the Germans would make domestic policy and then demand that other EU members adopt it, under the guise of “taking their fare share” as has happened in relation to illegal migration from the Middle East.
I’m sorry that I did not find out that, when a UK industry or even a substantial company gets into trouble, or if funding a project would have strategic benefits, the EU would be able to say “you can’t support that unless we say so.”
I’m sorry that I didn’t find out, and tell people, that the EU would be able to compel UK governments to award contracts to non-UK companies so preventing the effective support of e.g. the UK motor industry, which is bizarre given that, in France and Germany, almost all government cars are manufactured in those countries: when did you last see a French police car made in the UK? Insanely, it’s easier to prefer bidders from outside the EU than to prefer bidders from within the UK. How is that in our national interest?
If the EU had remained as the Common Market we were told it was, it would have been great. A Common Market is an excellent idea. Common standards for products is an excellent idea. A common currency is a great idea – but it should be a parallel currency. States should remain in control of their own economies.
Political union is a wonderful idea, on paper. Then again, so are Marxism, Maoism and a raft of other -isms. In the real world, they don’t work, they cause immense harm to many millions for the benefit of very few.
But the UK should have realised that it had the opportunity to create its own common market, one which spanned the globe, one which, internally, is entirely self-sufficient and where skills transfer can do more good than wealth transfer. The UK should leave the EU. It should cherry pick those parts it wants to interact with and leave the rest.