Learn more about Brexit


Breanna Reynolds, EMC Staff Writer

If you are familiar with politics, whether that’s through listening to the news or researching it yourself, you’ve probably heard the term “Brexit” in reference to the UK. “Brexit” is a term used for the debate on whether Britain will leave the EU (European Union), the word itself is a combination of “Britain” and “Exit.” Support within the population of Great Britain varies from region to region, in England and Wales people are more likely to support leaving, but in London, Scotland, and Northern Ireland people are more likely to support staying with the EU. If someone is young they are more likely to want to stay, and if someone is older they are more likely to want to leave. Though the results are mixed, in a 2016 election 52% of Britain’s population voted in support of Brexit, people often reference the ongoing refugee crisis as the reason for their want to separate. 

Britain’s current Prime Minister, Borris Johnson, claims that he will pull Britain from the EU without a formal agreement from the Parliament if needed (if you hear about a “no-deal Brexit” that’s what they’re talking about). This, predictably, lost him the majority of the support from the Parliament. He tried to gain back control by removing opposing members of the conservative party (his party), and he is now demanding a new general election. Right now we can only wait to see the results that sprout from this controversy. 

So, how does this affect people? In the UK and Europe it will stop both parties from being able to freely move in and out of the UK and will hinder non-UK Europeans from being able to live and work within Britain and will do the same thing for those within Britain when trying to work outside of their country. This is obviously a major concern for those living in Europe but does this really affect us in the US in any way? Well, the answer is yes. Great Britain is the US’s largest trading partner and now, thanks to our trade war with China, the US economy has become semi-dependent on trade with Britain and if effects other European countries, if their economy fails it could lead us into a recession. There have been talks and negotiations on if the current trade deal will translate over into a post-Brexit world but many people remain worried about its possible effects. 

We wanted to know what someone here in Galway might think of Brexit and its effects, so we took the time to sit down with the Global Studies teacher, Mr. McGowin, to ask some questions.

Question: What do you know about Brexit?

Answer: I know that it is England’s attempt or decision to leave the European union and I believe that there is no plan yet to actually leave the European Union, specifically no date. However the government has reached a deal, I believe, but I have not read what that deal specifically is. About half of, roughly, of Britain supports it and the other half does not. 

Q: What do you think of Britain leaving the EU?

A: Well, I think it could have a potentially dramatic impact on their economy and particular it could have an impact on their younger generations more so than their older generations and I’m not a big supporter of it because it can have an effect on the global economy as well if not done correctly. 

Q: Do you think this could be bad for Americans?

A: It potentially could be bad if Brexit causes the European economy to decline then that would negatively impact American businesses and our dealings with Europe.

Q: What do you think students should know about this issue?

A: Largely students should understand what is currently going on in the world and I think students should understand that not every issue is black and white, most sides have a valid argument, not everything is right and wrong.