We woke up this morning to a disgusting display of racist abuse at a man on a Manchester tram. Sadly, these kinds of verbal attacks weren’t rare before the referendum, but has Brexit aggravated this problem?
It’s undeniable that the EU referendum has polarised the country. However, it might also be that all this bitterness against immigrants was, somehow, latent within the British society. Then, only after the voting, these hateful feelings came up to the surface like a balloon underwater.
This morning, a video emerged showing two teenage boys shouting at a man on a Manchester tram. The aggressors were filmed telling the victim to “go back to Africa” and “Get off the tram now, I’ll waste you, I’ll waste anyone.”. Shortly after, the two attackers were removed from the tram while some commuters yelled at them “You are an absolute disgrace. A disgrace to England”. The video lead to the arrest of three men, later this evening.
Since the vote to leave the EU, racism attacks have grown in the UK. For example, in Huntingdon, British kids, whose parents are Polish, are getting cards containing the words “vermin”. In Newcastle, some demonstrators placed a placard calling to “start repatriation”.
Honestly, as an immigrant who works and studies here, I see this with worrying eyes. I’ve lived in the UK for over a year, and this country and its citizens have given me nothing but care and esteem. That’s why this sort of news distresses me greatly. Because when you are inside the system you realise that it is the immigration what has kept this country going for decades. Unfortunately, the legacy of the Brexit has normalised racism among Britons, and what made this country and its people great once, may turn on them if the issue is neglected any longer.