We all had to mentally prepare ourselves for the hop across the pond this summer, and part of that preparation were the answers to those inevitable questions about the current state of American politics.
Then there was Brexit.
Then there was Manchester.
Then there was the Grenfall Tower fire.
Far more often, we have gotten comments like “You must be loving the exchange rate.”
On one of our first nights here we passed two police men holding rifles at a post on a street corner. There was quite the stir in the street, and two men even stopped and asked to take a picture, to which one of the “bobbies” replied: “If you must,” followed by a heavy sigh. Armed and/or armored police would not be an uncommon sight in an American city, and our desensitization to the matter made the contrast seem that much more drastic.
However, the UK has seen a dramatic shift in perspective following the events of the general election. For once, Americans weren’t the only ones desperate to blow something up.
A deciding factor of Brexit for many voters was anger over immigration, with voters favoring less freedom of movement within the European Union, even if it hurts free trade. Sound familiar?
What is it with countries suddenly turning to majorly isolationist views? Fear.
But fear is not an easy subject to talk about, at a fancy dinner, after a pint at the pub, or even in Parliament. The question we should be preparing ourselves for is what are we more afraid of: Terrorism or Trade?