Venice – In one of my first exams at University, one of the questions was about Europe and the idea of Europe. I answered it by describing a Titian painting, the rape of Europa. The painting shows the story of Jupiter, who was in love with Europa, a beautiful woman, and in order to seduce her, he decided to transform himself in a white bull, attract the woman, let her sit on his back and escape. Europa then disappeared and what was left was the myth.
Europe is the same. Europe has been stolen since the beginning and after that what remained is a never ending search, a constant chase for this idea. Those who began the project of building a European Union, in the early days, were full of energy and passion, and in this context several opportunities were developed, creating the shared illusion that Europe itself would be found soon. Generations of people, like me, have enjoyed the opportunities that came from this, meeting people, ideas, contexts and travelling without restrictions.
I’ve been lucky so far. I’ve seen and listened to stories of people that have been denied the possibilities that I had, in particular during my stay in Scotland. I’m not sure that Europe will be found in the future, but what I believe is that those who are tired of the attempt to build it, especially in the UK, should recognise that this is a common project. Sometimes there are more negative than positive aspects, but something has begun and it is not over yet. Interrupting the process at this moment with a decision like Brexit could lead the European project to fail dramatically.