Opinion  

Brexit or Bremain - believe in a better world

Emma Ann Hughes

Emma Ann Hughes

With less than a week to go until the European Union referendum vote, I was going to comment today on the tactics used by Brexit and Bremain campaigners.

Following the killing of politician and Leave campaigner Jo Cox yesterday (16 June), there is only one comment I feel like I can make about the fast approaching EU referendum.

The killing of Ms Cox, a mother of two children who are exactly the same age as my own young children, has pressed the pause button on the campaigns surrounding the referendum on UK membership of the EU.

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Aged 41, Ms Cox supported the campaign for Britain to remain in the EU.

She was shot and stabbed several times in her constituency town of Birstall, near Leeds in northern England, yesterday (16 June) lunchtime.

A 52-year-old local man was arrested following the attack.

Ms Cox, her husband Brendan and three and five-year-old children took part in the high-profile pro-EU campaigning just the day before the shooting that took her life.

Following the death of his wife and the mother of his children, Mr Cox called on everyone “to fight against the hatred that killed her”.

He said Ms Cox, a former charity worker who eloquently used her maiden speech in the House of Commons last year to say “Our communities have been deeply enhanced by immigration, had fought for a better world”.

Mr Cox said his wife had fought to make the world her two young children will grow up in a better place “every day of her life with an energy and a zest for life that would exhaust most people.”

In his tribute to Ms Cox, Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour party, said: “Hatred will never solve problems. Jo believed that.”

Violence against MPs is thankfully rare.

It is right that Ms Cox’s death brought a halt to the Brexit and Bremain campaigns.

But the importance of this vote to our country’s future means the death of Ms Cox will only result in a pause rather than a full stop to the Brexit/Bremain campaigns.

By this time next week, the nation will have decided whether to stay in the European Union.

The only comment I wish to make is in the run up to that vote is please let us have calm, considered points put across by both the Brexit and Bremain campaigners rather than shouting.

I truly believe the vast majority of the nation wants to listen to reasoned argument so they can grasp what outcome would result in a better life for us all.

Cutting through the arguments I have seen among friends, colleagues and members of this esteemed industry on social media and our own website what clearly unites these voices is they want to vote for what they believe will result in a better world.