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How Britain's "Statue Wars" became a proxy for our deeper values divide - a short thread
As much work has now shown, Britain's 2016 vote for Brexit was only one symptom of a much deeper values divide that has been rumbling through Britain (and other democracies) for a few decades

In very broad terms, the divide is between "liberals" and "social conservatives"
One question that is now hanging over British politics is whether Brexit and its final resolution would bring that divide to a close or instead cement it while an array of other issues -immigration, gender, diversity agenda, etc.- would breathe new life into it
This is why the "Statue Wars" is particularly interesting (to me). Is it independent of these divides or is it another touchstone of how Britain appears to be increasingly following the US model of polarisation? Some new polling throws some light on this
Let's take "Remain" and "Leave" as a proxy for this divide between liberals & social conservatives (n.b. there are liberals who voted for Brexit and a few conservatives who voted for Remain). But let's take broad view ...
Before the events of this week would you have supported or opposed the removal of the statue of slave trader and local philanthropist Edward Colston?

Remainers 59%
Leavers 25%

Remainers 20%
Leavers 52%
"Last week Colston statue pulled down. Do you approve or disapprove of protestors who pulled down statue?

Remainers 39%
Leavers 10%

Remainers 43%
Leavers 81%
"To what extent do you approve or disapprove of the police who decided not to intervene?"

Remainers 52%
Leavers 20%

Remainers 23%
Leavers 60%
"To what extent do you approve or disapprove of PM Boris Johnson who described it as "criminal act"

Remainers 33%
Leavers 77%

Remainers 46%
Leavers 8%
Ditto what Priti Patel said - "utterly disgraceful"

Remainers 30%
Leavers 74%

Remainers 52%
Leavers 10%
How about the Mayor of Bristol who said "it is my job to hear voices of people for who that statue was a personal affront?"

Remainers 62%
Leavers 25%

Remainers 14%
Leavers 43%
The only thing that finds majority support among Leavers and Remainers today is the idea of putting Colston in a museum.

Remainers 7%
Leavers 26%

Remainers 63%
Leavers 56%

Remainers 21%
Leavers 10%
And it seems unlikely that the Statue Wars will end soon. What should happen to statues indirectly or directly involved in slave trade?

Remainers 14%
Leavers 43%

Remainers 37%
Leavers 33%

Remainers 37%
Leavers 15%
Even @YorkshireTea is not completely free from unfolding culture wars. "Does response from Yorkshire Tea make you think more positively or negatively about brand?"

Remainers 62%
Leavers 30%

Remainers 8%
Leavers 22%

Remainers 26%
Leavers 40%
It seems then that rather than dismiss our Statue Wars as a "moment of madness" they have to a significant degree become yet another symptom of a deeper value divide, bubbling away beneath the surface. Not everyone falls into these two monolithic blocks, clearly, but many do /end
p.s. my sincere apologies but I should have mentioned that these questions are via the excellent @OpiniumResearch team who have asked some really helpful questions on this topic. ht @AGKD123 and colleagues.
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