Liberal Democrats are not anti-European. We believe that the European Union needs significant reform, but we also believe that it is a positive force for the political and economic well being of British Citizens.
What, however, are the Conservatives?
Are they Anti-European, as so many of their members seem to be?
Are they Pro-European, as Christopher Beazley, a veteran Conservative MEP, certainly is?
For many Conservatives, membership of the European Union is, as it is for UKIP, a complete anathema. However, David Cameron says that he does not want to withdraw from the European Union .
Personally, therefore I get a little tired of being accused by some Tory nutters of being some fanatical anti British traitor because I also support membership of the EU. The furious rage and malice that these anti-European Conservative people often bring to their arguments is usually highly unpleasant and almost entirely counter-productive. The contempt, for example, that these Yahoos have poured on Christopher Beazley's head since he announced his retirement is little short of disgusting.
Christopher and I know each other slightly, since we have taken part in several academic seminars at UCL-SSEES. I have therefore had the pleasure of several thoughtful discussions on various subjects, including the future of the Baltic, with him.
As political opponents we can not be expected to agree on everything, but I would regard his views with respect, even when they are not my own.
A lack of courtesy is one thing that I have got used to from the more unreconstructed element of the anti-European fanatics when I debate with them. The horrible vituperation and wholly unworthy personal attacks against Christopher Beazley -by his own side- I have found absolutely shocking.
Mr. Cameron too may disagree with some of Christopher Beazley's positions, but he really ought to protect him from the howling mob of barbarians whose continuing personal attacks are truly vile.
If he is not prepared to defend an honourable and long-serving MEP, then perhaps we are entitled to ask more firmly: "Mr. Cameron, do you support continued British membership of the European Union".
It is a straight yes or no answer.
He can not placate the anti-European mob with equivocations; he should defend an honourable and decent man.