General Election December 12th. Regardless of if you agree with me or not, please vote. If you are registered and able. Please vote. Please do not be one of the people that say “my voice doesn’t matter anyway” because we all know there are more people in the country that choose not to vote or spoil their vote when they can make a difference. Millions of people think and feel like that and if you are registered and able you are doing every person that can not vote for whatever reasons, particularly your children who are underage, a disservice.
As much as I put myself as very left wing, feminist and one for equal rights and opportunities for all I am going to try and take a different approach to this post. I am voting the way I am because I want to see change, I believe in the manifesto and I believe this general election is the chance to do so. If you are reading this post then I urge you to read all the manifestos or if you want a summary then consider Simple Politics on Facebook and Instagram which offer plenty of summaries.
Please do not listen to the papers or polls because there is no way to tell how true, ethical or representative they are. Finding an unbiased place of information is important and should really help you with making your decision if you are on the fence. The recent debates are also a good place to listen to what the leaders and senior members of the political parties are saying and pledging. I wouldn’t really bother with the one on one interviews because the interviewer has an agenda they want to get across. Debates are usually more balanced, have questions from a variety of people of different beliefs and cultures and therefore probably a bit more honest.
This election really seems to be about Brexit for so many people but it is honestly bigger than that. I have written about what I felt about Brexit a few years ago and now, quite frankly, I’m sick of the word. I think Labours approach is really fair, as a “classic remoaner” and actually puts it back to the people. Because let’s be honest Westminster has been very distant with us about this, they have not brought the country back together and perhaps a Peoples vote where whatever deal the EU negotiates comes back to the people is quite reasonable considering no one else can make up their minds.
Another great place to look to consider who to vote for is looking at each MP’s voting history for particular options you care about. The thing about politics and general elections is that we are never going to get someone perfect. There will never, ever be a prime minister that is a one size fits all. We are all different, with different beliefs, backgrounds, culture and class structures. The best thing you can do is consider voting for the party that most aligns with what your personal principles are.
The last ten years have been difficult for many people. We have both a growing and aging population which is leading to strains on our public services as well as a true lack of funding for all of these. When it comes to society and public services we all have a duty not to take advantage, particularly with the NHS, but when cuts are being made all over the place but there are more people to protect, look after and make well it’s very difficult for the people in those professions. What’s more is it stops people wanting to do these jobs. It’s all very well promising loads of new nurses, doctors, police officers etc but if people don’t want to do those jobs because it doesn’t offer security like it used to then we can only fill them by outsourcing.
I am not the most educated political person but I do take an interest in what’s going on and I do have to look outside the manifesto pledges and question the how with these big numbers. Most of them make sense to me when it comes to funding. If you raise minimum wage, you lower benefit payments because people don’t need them as they have enough to live on so the government recaps the money. If you nationalise the trains and electric grid, then the government recaps the money. If you invest sensibly into things that are guarenteed returns then the goverment recaps the money. If you give people affordable housing, affordable public transport and affordable electrical and broadband bills then people spend more of their disposable income, invest more disposable income, save more money and most importantly shop more which means more money back into the economy.
The thing is we have a lot of very wealthy people in this country but we have a huge amount of working poor too. It isn’t fair to continue poverty shaming these people who are working but do not earn enough. It’s heartless and unacceptable to say “get another job” – what if they’re a single parent and can only work during childcare available hours, but the childcare hours are stretched during the year to include half terms and the six weeks summer holidays? It’s not 30 hours a week then, I think it’s actually around 22 hours a week which then means the working parent can only commit to that amount of hours a week. What if it’s two people and one has to work nights because of childcare? What if they are undergraduates saving to move out of their parents house because there aren’t enough jobs and the low paid ones make saving hard? What if its just an unqualified person at age 25 that just wants to leave their old teenage bedroom and is scrimping and saving for a new home?
We don’t know anyone else’s personal lives or reasons they do things so saying sweeping statements like ‘get another job’ is so pointless and unobtainable. In political debates its very often we see angry, hate filled language and it’s because people are angry that this happens. I am angry too, for lots of reasons but mainly because I don’t trust the government we have had for the last 9 years that has been a complete misery to live in as a working class woman and mother. For the vast majority of these years I’ve been self employed because it was the only balance between childcare and earning money.
It doesn’t matter how I feel really, I will vote my way in December and I really hope you will vote too. I mean I won’t lie, I don’t want to see another Tory government in all honesty. What I’d love to see stop is this breakdown of families and friendships because of political beliefs. I mean, it’s all very well disagreeing however, I am not going to stand for classist, ageist and racist comments from people I know because that’s not needed. And I want this to be known, my issue, my anger, is directed at the last government and a Prime Minister that I do not feel is capable of leading a society and country based on equality for all.