The problem I repeatedly face when having to deal with people with similar views to Nigel Farage is simple. Whoever I so happen to be conversing with about any particular subject like say, immigration, normally remain closed to the wider scope of the problems they talk about, and the human issues it faces, in favour of focusing on whatever they deem to be their own personal suffering. I got into a lot of flak after the murder of Jo Cox by finally breaking my silence over the Brexit debate, and completely condoning the campaign for vote leave for now escalating the issue to the point where someone actually died as a result of hysteria, and sensationalist views getting out of hand and motivating people towards extremism. I posted this view onto social media, and soon was being accused of trying to score points politically and openly attacked for trying to turn Jo Cox's death into a means of influencing people for my own political agenda. This was of course not my intention, as although holding similar views to her on a number of issues outside of the Brexit debate, what I fundamentally wanted to express was that just because she held a view that was contrary to the man who murdered her in public she did not need to die for it, but in doing so I felt that this would further strengthen the causes she believed in, and inspire other people, my self-included.
I find it extremely ironic and in poor taste that Nigel Farage would use the horrifying incident in Berlin to attempt to cast further shade on the decisions made by Angela Merkel with regards to Germany's open border and open arms policy. Using the deaths of innocent people to try and openly attack a politician over a humanitarian and goodwill initiative that you might not agree with is nothing short of appalling. I was vilified personally by people I consider friends over an issue that I felt was avoidable if politicians like Farage were less focussed on forwarding personal agendas and concentrating more on facts, and yet Farage feels it is applicable and proportionate to directly pin this attack on Merkel as further evidence to vilify the Schengen agreement, and her own whilst not perfect, but highly commendable humanitarian effort to accept a million Syrian refugees. If I had tried to pin the death of Jo Cox on his hands I wonder how he might feel about that. My case would not be the strongest as it is easier to show Farage as a voice for discord and dividing the population’s views, then as a demagogue inciting violence against members of the political class, but what is his case against Merkel?
Is it possible that Mr Farage does not see the war going on in Syria? Where does he imagine these people would go if they did not feel emboldened to make the perilous journey across the Mediterranean or through to Turkey to escape fighting? Does he forget that 65 years ago we as a nation were involved in a vastly similar situation accepting refugees from Europe fleeing persecution or outright genocide at the hands of the Nazis? How many more might have died if we had not been so open with our own hospitality then, and would Mr Farage be comfortable with the images of hundreds of thousands of dead refugees who we forced to return back to their own country and were killed as a result of our own inaction? Does he not see the gaps Schengen fills in our own economy, with the reliance of foreign workers filling an employment bracket of nearly 6 million jobs, almost four times the size of our current level of unemployment? Mr Farage is clearly insinuating that as a result of these policies this attack in Berlin is directly relatable, but the sheer immaturity of his doing so is infuriating. By the time any rational, or logical person has had the time to sit down and explain that this attack could have still happened whether or not the refugee policy, or the Schengen agreement ever even existed, the fear that Mr Farage quite obviously fears and that he is able to take advantage of in other people, renders the argument moot purely down to sheer hysteria.
It becomes impossible to make people understand that their fears whilst being justified, and very easily grounded under some facts, are also unjustified and cannot be grounded in the weight of the wider scope of the problem. If I hopped on the plane to Germany and went to a local bus station, acquiring a petrol canister and a fire axe, and proceeded to attempt to use both to full destructive effect, how would anyone have the foresight to stop me? I don't fit the profile for any extremist that police might be looking out for locally, I have no history with mental health issues, no prior online search history that could be used to potentially paint me as a suspect, so how would anyone have any notion of what I was going to do or potentially interfere to stop me before I did? And even if I did, in sad cases like the murder of Jo Cox, sadly action cannot always be taken quick enough to prevent tragedies occurring. The ability of an individual to instigate destruction and damage upon society, without any prior form of warning or acknowledgment is unparalleled in this day. The same day that the Berlin attack occurred there was a shooting in Turkey which killed the Russian Ambassador by a riot police officer, Three people were killed in a shooting in Zurich, and yet Mr Farage ignores these two completely unforeseeable tragedies in favour of focusing on one he feels was preventable purely on the basis of the mass freedom of movement.
Mr Farage is once again ignoring the wider issues in favour of furthering his own aspirations, and allaying his own xenophobia onto the rest of the world, in a move which sadly other people will not have the willingness to look into them and assert their own opinion. It is far too easy for people to simply believe what Mr Farage says without question and stick with it, as it plays on and reflects their own fears that they have not confronted or are not willing to confront, in favour of bandying together with others like them for their own personal security, and pursuing isolationism from the wider world as a means of maintaining a safer world for themselves to inhabit, at the exclusion of those who are in real danger.