Culture At Large

A Christian defense of Brexit

Todd Huizinga

As I consider Brexit — Britain’s decision to leave the European Union — my thoughts center on the EU’s nature as a utopian political project. 

The European Union is the world’s only functioning supranationalist entity. The EU nations, in the interest of realizing peace in Europe, are ceding significant sovereign powers to supranational EU institutions that function above the national level. 

Ultimately, the EU’s goal is global governance — extending its form of supranational governance in a way that ignores what Christians recognize as the fallibility of human nature. A look at the interrelatedness of the EU’s global governance agenda and its particularly secular approach to human rights illustrates this. 

The EU’s secularist perspective on women’s rights, children’s rights and LGBTQ rights sets aside the Judeo-Christian recognition of human fallibility, as well as the social nature of human beings, in favor of absolute individual autonomy — freedom of choice taken to its ultimate extent. Similarly, the global governance ideology is based on the idea that, via activist “governance,” the world can be transformed and human beings liberated from the constraints of tradition, culture and religion.

As a utopian political project, the EU ignores what Christians recognize as the fallibility of human nature.

Both the new human rights and the global governance project are transformative and liberationist. Just as global governance seeks to transform the world in the globalists’ image, liberating peoples from traditional national allegiances and local communities, the EU’s human rights advocacy seeks to liberate individuals from the local mediating institutions — such as the family and church — that imply an authoritative moral code and a basically unchanging human nature. Secularist human rights advocacy asserts that people can transform themselves according to the god of “choice” and thus liberate themselves from the constraints of traditional social bonds. In the case of women’s and children’s rights — focusing respectively on the right to abortion and the idea of the autonomous child whose rights must often be asserted by the state in circumvention of parents — liberation from the constraints of the family is key. In the case of LGBTQ rights, the concept of self-defined identity liberates human beings from nothing less than empirical reality.

Of course, human rights are being redefined with breathtaking speed elsewhere also. But in the EU, the new human rights are a necessary corollary of the transformative and liberationist global governance project that grounds the entire union. 

One more point. The EU declares its new human rights to be universal and a top priority. But they are based on a post-Christian transvaluation of all values, rejecting the idea of unchanging truth. Everything becomes uncertain, including the question, “What are human rights?” Thus, human rights themselves will inevitably be determined by those who hold political power. 

So government as provider of “universal human rights” expands, magically, to government as master. And with worldwide communications, commerce and ideas, government as master expands geographically also. Just as government power to define human rights is in principle unlimited, so also it becomes impossible to limit government geographically. Global governance thus unmasks itself not as a benign desire to improve humanity’s lot, but as an unlimited power grab to define truth and justice globally, under the banner of “universal human rights.”

The implications of the EU’s inherently non-Christian vision are the deconstruction of the person and a liberty-killing system of “governance.” On June 23, the British voted for modesty in government, a sobriety that Christians, knowing human corruptibility, cannot but share.

Topics: Culture At Large, Theology & The Church, Theology, News & Politics, World, Politics