Why Europe Is the Best Thing Since Sliced Bread - The Passionate Case for Remain

21/06/2016 11:45 | Updated 21 June 2016

As we've built up to this monolith of a vote, we've been flooded with facts and stats from both sides of the debate which all seem to be confused and contradictory. Despite this, there has been little not just in defence of the trading block, but actually in genuine celebration of what it has achieved, what it could achieve, and what it will achieve; why Britain truly is, stronger in Europe.

The EU has been a great beacon of support for equal rights across the continent. The European Convention on Human Rights guarantees our rights in the workplace, in public, in private and before the law. It halts prejudice because of our gender, race, religion, sexuality or anything. This focus on equal rights is one of the greatest pillars of EU law - a pillar that we cannot take for granted.

Thirdly, perhaps the best thing about the EU is the spirit in which it was made - in the spirit of cooperation, of mutual benefit - in a continent that has seen no period of peace like this for more than 1000 years, an opportunity that cannot be taken for granted. The EU was founded to ensure that European steel would never again be used to end European lives, and while I'm not open to throwing about the term "world war three," I instead would say that it would simply be a shame to abandon the European peace project, because it has been a success. The EU is a unique organisation the likes of which the world has never seen, and perhaps will never see again - and Britain is part of it.

In addition to this, Britain, in coming together with other European nations has made the humble and sensible decision to pool its sovereignty. In the same way, we pool our sovereignty with NATO, the UN or the WTO, the EU allows our voice to be louder. Instead of 28 separate voices across Europe, we find 1 united voice, representing more than 500 million people to stand against atrocity, and solve problems which cannot be solved alone. The refugee crisis and global warming are crises in which a cooperative effort is the only way to solve them. This union is perhaps the most incredible piece of international cooperation on earth, which fights tooth and nail for the greater good. By coming together with our allies, Britain shows herself to believe in something bigger; to have hope in peace.

We should be celebrating the free movement of people. Celebrating? Yes! The European Union's offer of the right to live in any other country for any amount of time, at any time, is an exciting one. There are 1.4 million EU citizens living and working here in the UK, but also 600,000 more in our public services. We rely on EU workers. Furthermore, the opportunity for us to travel, work, study, and live across the EU is as fantastic as it is rare. Visa-free travel allows millions of British nationals of all ages to live from the Mediterranean to the Baltic and beyond - an opportunity to learn languages and experience cultures like no other. We see now a generation of young adults who see themselves as Europeans, who see this ability to travel as a birth-right - and taking it away would be a sad mistake.

The EU is an incredible opportunity. I see no argument against it which can tear down what it is or what it represents - and that is hope. Hope for a safe and secure future, hope for strong and growing economies, and hope for complete trust and cooperation between former fascist and communist countries, after a period of war that killed so many of Europe's children. In an eternally globalising world, a decision to walk away from the EU over issues of immigration or sovereignty would be sad. Everything Europe represents, everything Europe hopes for should be what we aspire to. Peace, democracy, co-operation - these should be the watchwords of our generation, not immigration, terrorism and fear. From the European arrest warrant to the Erasmus system, Britain can get so much from the EU, it is ripe for the taking. Our MEPs can do so much for us - but only if we let them. Having elected UKIP and BNP MEPs for many years - is it any wonder we aren't getting the best from Europe?

The environment, terrorism, refugees, technological development - these are the things that will define this generation, but they remain things that do not pay attention to border crossings and barbed wire, issues that can only be combatted internationally. Aligning ourselves with Europe, backing Remain could just be the most important decision that you will make this century.