As I put a cross through the box to the right of the words saying: Leave the European Union, I could not have predicted the mass outpour of heartbreak and dismay among my fellow students who chose to mark the box above. As I scrolled through my Facebook feed as the result of the referendum was spreading throughout the country, all I could see was post after post of my fellow students demanding a second referendum on Britain's European Union membership, so that the result which they feel was wrong, could be made right.
Though I find this lack of tolerance towards the outcome of the referendum fairly unpleasant; what I find more distressing are the statements expressed by my supposedly liberal minded colleagues. Those who do not support the views of the liberal bigots who clog up my timeline are accused of being bigots themselves, with further accusations of being: racists; small-minded; backwards thinking; uneducated, little Englanders. So, in the minds of many people this is how I will be seen, or at least how I could be seen.
When University resumes in September, and the question flows around asking one another which way we voted, how will I be treated for holding an opinion to that which is not the norm amongst the student population? Though I feel most students are generally tolerant of other people's views and opinions, this does seem to be a different case. I do not support the European Union for many reasons, but the most decisive of this whole debate has been the issue of immigration, and I am critical of uncontrolled mass immigration, which I strongly feel has and will continue to have a detrimental impact on British society, yet my peers are almost entirely absent to any critical opinion of immigration, though I believe they will be the ones who will truly face the damaging effects of it.
To hold this view, I put myself into a minority among my fellow students. I further put myself open to confrontation and scorn, though I do not express these views for any other reason than that I sincerely believe them. I am not a bigot, nor racist, or uneducated, and I hope this sort of rhetoric fades away after the initial shock of the outcome of the referendum, and I hope that my fellow students do not become intolerant to those views which do not match their own.