by Beverly Stevens, REGINA Editor
From my Facebook newsfeed, reports from young Catholic people:
- “I know loads of people who voted LEAVE, including my family, and I haven't heard a bigoted comment from a single one of them. From the REMAIN side, however, there has been explicit ageist bile, contempt for the uneducated, talk of sewers bursting and lizards voting, fantasies about creating a new, independent state that would exclude the rough, backward, ‘racist' north, and arguments for limiting old people's right to vote on the basis that they lack the IQ or social nous necessary for making big decisions. If the leaders of REMAIN want to see bigotry, they should look in the mirror.” (An English man)
- “Big Media, Big Business, and Big Government all oppose Brexit. A point in favor of the United Kingdom's courageous decision. The globalized elite, nothing else, is directly responsible for this moment of transatlantic populism. Small is beautiful — and genuinely powerful.” (An American man)
- “When I started looking into this I wasn't sure which way to vote, but the ridiculous hate speech of the REMAIN camp really pushed me into finding their arguments ridiculous. Since the result their true colours have really been shown, and they are not very pretty colours. I hope to goodness that we don't have a second referendum, because the bullying going on is just nasty.” (An English woman)
- “So proud the British decided to get back their independence. This against all the pundits, all who admonished them, shamed them if they would not stay in the bondage of Europe. A nation, like a person, should not be the slave of another. But a nation like a person can enter if necessary in an alliance for a cause with others. The more decisions possible at the lower levels of the social body — a nation versus an abstract European entity led by bureaucrats — the more liberty and sound life there is. It's called subsidiarity. The other option is called totalitarianism. Who will be next to be free to be themselves again?” (A French man)
As a professor of finance, I have looked at the economic issues at stake. Basically, it boils down to this: can the UK thrive without the EU? This remains to be seen, but if centuries of history are any guide, the answer is a resounding YES. (Though to judge from the reactions of the mainly-young ‘Remainers' above, centuries of history are not a guide, and this Brexit vote a reason to give vent to hate speech of all kinds.)
As the editor of a Catholic publication, what interests me is if Catholics — in the UK, the EU and elsewhere — should have a different, more ‘nuanced' view of this. After all, the Church was the organizing principle the last time that Europe was united, and there are even a few wistful romantics out there nursing forlorn hopes that the EU might be a force for the renaissance of Christendom.
I do think Catholics should have a more nuanced view, and here's why: Last summer I was invited to a closed-door event, a weekend with some of Europe's most illustrious aristocrats. All Catholics. All highly educated. And ALL very worried about what was happening in Europe under the EU. I attended ‘on background' promising not to write about what I heard there for attribution. And I have not done so.
Did they meet at a super-secret, luxury resort? Actually, no. The event — like the people who attended — was very modest. So, why would aristocrats meet behind closed doors in a small, plain hotel that lacked even air conditioning?
These people from the ancient ruling families of France, Germany, Austria, Italy and Spain were very worried about the EU's assault on the family. After the EU specifically rejected the idea that it had Christian roots, many of these people became genuinely alarmed. Since then, they have been monitoring the myriad of regulatory ‘fixes' — especially concerning education — which demonstrated that the EU's self-styled ‘masters' were aiming at shaping a society where ‘the family' simply didn't exist.
And it has worked. Basically, wherever the EU has reached, the birthrate has plummeted, and the Faith is all but dead.
This is not a coincidence. The aristocrats told me that Europe's old socialist and communist elites have been superseded by a new quasi-capitalist EU elite that was succeeding where the Communists had failed — by undermining the Faith, and the families that had grown up under the protective mantle of that Faith.
And the EU's vision of their brave new world? A flattened globe, where borders are crumbling and identities are fluid. Banking, commerce and media elites bind the nations together into a seamless new tapestry. People are free, finally, to seek opportunity and pleasure, without the confining strictures of tradition, family or morality. In this world, ‘morality' is also a fluid concept; people can hook up, produce children or abort them, hire technology and surrogates to make babies — it's all the same to the Super-State. It collects high taxes, grants eye-wateringly lucrative contracts to its corporate supporters, turns a blind eye to bad behavior by any group it is protecting and increasingly persecutes anyone who dares to oppose the Super-State's version of ‘morality'.
One problem obvious to Catholics — who have so often been victims of State-sponsored violence — is that super-states are vulnerable to being captured by ideologically-driven elites. This appears to have happened in both the US and the EU, as evidenced by their current obsession with pan-sexuality, transgenderism and open bathrooms.
Another problem is the Super-State's inability to police its borders or negotiate with hostile neighbors. Denying sovereignty to its member states, it is at the same time impotent in basic matters of statecraft. This may be because it is actually a creature of finance, and its ruling elites are focused elsewhere, having secured for themselves safe havens from the street crime, terrorism and unrest their policies enable.
Now, what does this have to do with the Brexit vote? Our sources in the UK tell us that — notwithstanding the accusations of ‘raaacccisssm' by Remainers — many racial minorities there voted to leave the EU. Why would that be? For the same reason that all the other working class and middle class Leavers did: they recognize that the Super-State was not a) representing them or b) protecting them. Furthermore, they see that the Super-State has become a threat to their own traditional morality. Finally, they are tired of seeing UK elites prosper at the cost of their own families, and futures.
So, the reason Catholics everywhere should think carefully about this Brexit vote boils down to this: what kind of world do you want to live in?
As Catholics, we are from every race, color and level of society under the sun, so this is not about those things.
Many of us don't know this, but the Church teaches we are to support subsidiarity, the principle that economic and political decisions should be made at the most local level possible, by the people most affected by the outcome. This flies in the face of both the Super-States and the Super-Elites of the corporate and media worlds which support them – for a reason.
As world-class ‘haters', they truly hate having their power stripped from them by the little guys.
But subsidiarity is the safest way forward for the rest of us little guys, especially Catholics.
BEVERLY STEVENS is the Editor of REGINA MAGAZINE at www.reginamag.com.