I really hate the document in the above photograph. I admit I have to have it in order for me to travel to Holland - but I actually find the wording at the top of it offensive. There is no such thing as a "European Union". There is a collection of varied states which share the same landmass that are all politically and economically "connected" to each other via Brussels and Strasburg - and the UK and the Republic of Ireland are some way away by sea.
I have two major problems with the concept of a "European Union".
One of these is the fact that anybody who tells you that the European Union has lived peacefully for 70 years really needs to learn their recent history. The European Union has actually been involved in conflicts and wars since before it turned into the European Union. The Northern Ireland Troubles being one such example - and the former Yugoslavia being another (this is before you start thinking about Iraq, Syria, Libya, etc) - they may not have fought under the umbrella of the European Union but that is beside the point.
The other reason is that the European Union idea has been tried before in history and it wasn't exactly what I would classify as altogether successful (even though the country still exists today).
You may or may not realise this but the United States of America started off as a mix of different European nationalities all in the same country - UK, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, German, etc. Each with their different languages and customs.
Some of the existing place names in the United States of America reach back to the different countries of origin of the original settlers. Place names like Birmingham in Alabama, Harlem and Brooklyn in New York (from Haarlem and Breukelen in The Netherlands), Rome and Florence from Italy.
However, there is only one official language of the United States of America - English.
The separate countries which provided the populations of different parts of the United States of America have all merged to make one country with several States within it - all speaking the same language.
If someone decides to take the European Union to its logical conclusion we will have to decide which language everybody will be forced to speak. There will be no borders whatsoever - either physical or legal. The names of the countries which are currently recognised by every single legal entity which matters in the world will be reduced to mere "States" in a larger country.
If we do vote to remain we will not be able to avoid being sucked in eventually.
My idea of a European Union is to go back to how it was before the borders came down and the EU Parliament and Commission were set up. Trading with every country in Europe but having separate national jurisdictions.
I actually predict that the European Union as it stands currently will not survive for much longer. In fact, the longer the European Union exists (with the current refugee crisis) I think there will be more chance of World War III breaking out with Europe as its birthplace - much like the last two World Wars.
I read somewhere that Winston Churchill said that a Union of Europe would be a very good thing - as long as the UK stayed out of it. I think he had a very good point.
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