Whether you think the United Kingdom exiting the European Union is cause for alarm or celebration, you have to concede this: Britons engaged in an open, lively and mostly peaceful debate, they turned out in droves, they cast their votes freely and fairly and, by so doing, expressed their will and determined their future. That’s called democracy. Is there a preferable alternative?
Despite pollsters’ predictions, the referendum on Brexit – for British exit — was a clear victory for Leave over Remain. Those wanting out of the EU did not vote their pocketbooks. On the contrary, they were repeatedly warned by establishment figures — President Obama among them — that they would pay a steep economic price for going their own way.
To say I saw this coming would be an exaggeration but I do think I caught a glimmer — almost a quarter century ago. I was among a group of journalists hosted by a European foundation eager that Americans form a positive view of a changing Europe.