The month is March 2019 and collectively, the entire world has no friggin’ idea what is happening with Brexit.
Like, what even is a Brexit?
In a (very messy) nutshell, Britain voted to leave the European Union (EU) in 2016 and have been trying to figure out the best way to do this every since. The EU is a unified trade and monetary body that consists of 28 European countries. Most notably, it eliminates border controls between members.
Britain has to leave this union by March 29 i.e. the end of this month, but the UK parliament really don’t seem to be able to reach an agreement on how to do this.
It’s, well, a bit of a clusterf*ck by the looks of it. Excuse our French.
What’s particularly complicated is the fact there are already so many fraught intricacies within the four countries that make up Great Britain.
Overall, Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to remain in the EU, while England and Wales voted to leave. But because Scotland and Northern Ireland are part of Great Britain, they also have to leave the EU.
Northern Ireland has an extra layer of ‘WTF is even going to happen here’ smothered on top of it because they share a border with Ireland, who are very much their own independent country.
Did we say nutshell earlier? This is not a nutshell explanation and we’re sorry.
Listen to Holly Wainwright’s very apt Brexit analogy below. Post continues.
To cut this very long story short, the Irish-Northern Irish border is the source of much confusion/contention when this whole Brexit thing goes down.
Because you could literally walk across the border and be part of the EU or walk back and be in Great Britain only. See? Much confusion.
So what’s to stop the people in Northern Ireland being like ‘Nah, I don’t think I do want to be severed from this cosy union actually.’? Well, nothing but a few metres really.
The royal family, along with the rest of the UK, know this has the potential to be a total sh*tfight. Their job (we guess it’s their job?) is to try to smooth relations with their loyal and not-so-loyal subjects.
Enter: Kate and Wills.
In an act of glorious sovereignty, the Queen has sent Prince William and Duchess Catherine on a royal tour of Northern Ireland to do lots of ‘fun’ stuff and there is no way the timing of this visit is a coincidence.
In fact, this royal tour was sprung on us. It was a surprise royal tour.
The Queen is all ‘Crap, we still haven’t sorted Brexit and it’s happening in a few weeks. Oh, I know – we’ll send Kate and Wills to play with them and show them how great the UK is.” (Probably.)