Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Your Vote Matters

When a snap election was called earlier in April, I couldn't quite believe what I was hearing. It seems like elections are now a yearly thing here in the UK, and some places are even having two elections within a month of each other, due to local elections being held in this month. Politics is a tricky subject, and it's even trickier to get people interested in it. Sure, you might read a passing comment in the paper or see something retweeted into your timeline, but fewer and fewer people actually hold a proper interest in politics these days. 

It's understandable, too. We aren't taught politics at school - you only really get an option once you reach A Levels, and personally I think that's too late for many. Another reason for disinterest is that most politicians are just a carbon copy of the one before. You get promise after promise - anyone seen an election bus recently? - and they're broken before their term even begins. When the general election was announced, newscasters flocked the politics-savvy Bristol, and the first person they could interview gasped, 'no, not another one?' when told the news. 

If you couldn't tell, I am interested in politics - I've even put myself forward to become a District Councillor in the local elections. I strongly believe that if you want to see a change, you have to start with yourself. Of course, you don't have to nominate yourself to become a councillor, but if you do want to help your party then I'm sure they'd love an extra pair of hands. Delivering leaflets or putting a poster up in your window might not seem like a big thing, but it can really make a difference. 

Now, I'm not here to tell you who to vote for. You have your own personal reasons for voting and I doubt this single post could convince you who to vote for if you've never considered it before. I'm calling out to the person who doesn't vote, the reader who doesn't think their vote will make a difference. Without a shadow of a doubt, the number of people who don't place their vote will be of greater value or equal to than the winning party. These people could have made a huge difference, but unfortunately a vote not cast stands for nothing in the long run. You can check that you're registered to vote here, or apply for a postal vote if you think you might be busy as the election falls during exam season. 

If you're unsure who to vote for, it could be worth completing this quiz on the I Side With website. I tried it and my result was 87% aligned to my party of choice, so I'd say it's pretty accurate. Obviously if you get matched with SNP and you live in Wales, then you should maybe go for the next choice you feel fits you. It might open your eyes if you think you were definitely one party but only matched 12% of their policies. 

I've tried to keep this post as to the point as possible, so I do apologise that it's slightly on the longer side. I really hope it has helped you if you were on the fence about voting, and wish you all the best on June 8th! 

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