Leave supporters are threatening to kill, rape and castrate anyone they accuse of trying to stop Brexit. (I made the castrate bit up on the grounds that Twitter users should be less sexist.)
But is this sort of thing really British?Do the British really care about leaving or staying in the EU? And does anyone understand – or even want to understand – what’s going on?
The British are supposed to embody the virtues of tolerance, fair play and respect for the other side. But that’s wrong – the myth was made up in the 18th and 19th centuries as a cover for racist imperialism.
Actually, the virtues of the average Briton are inertia, ignorance and apathy.
The British have better things to do than trying to understand complicated issues – preferring instead to watch Strictly, beg on the streets or write racist and homophobic tweets, depending on their socio-economic status, attitude to ballroom dancing and levels of bigotry.
Because of this horror of anything complicated or nuanced, their opinions are created by the ‘newspaper’ they read. Here are some examples:
Express readers obsess about the weather, Princess Diana and wanting to get their country back.
Daily Mail readers are disgusted by sodomy, immigrants living in lavish houses and the arrogance of gay high court judges who dare to uphold the principle of parliamentary sovereignty and the rule of law.
Sun readers are experts on breasts, the sex lives of the stars and foreigners coming over here, taking our jobs and raping our women.
Except the British aren’t actually that bothered about any of these ‘issues’. Not really. Not if you asked them to be honest – except for the breasts. Sun readers love page three.
So what do the British really care about?
Dogs and cats
Cars – especially Clarkson
Hair styles and dyes
Beauty – especially nails and eyebrows
Having sex in budget hotels
The bloody weather
Celebrities shagging each other
EastEnders and Corrie
Strictly Come Dancing
Bank holidays – wanting more
Traffic jams – wanting fewer
Holidays in the sun
Sexy fancy dress
Writing abusive tweets or facebook posts – threatening to kill, rape (or, hopefully in a less sexist future, castrate) people they don’t like.
‘Political issues’ – and the EU is one of the more arcane – come about 158th on this list of priorities for the British, just behind ‘creosoting the fence’ and just above ‘the Royal Family’.
I’m off for a nap.