With only days to go until the General Election you’ll probably have noticed the voices telling you who to vote for are shouting even louder now. And I’m not just talking about politicians but by people on the news and in particular, friends on your Facebook timeline.
There will be people posting daily status’ about how Corbyn should be Prime Minister because he ate a Pringle offered to him by a constituent at a rally, or how Theresa May’s kitten heels will bring about the best Brexit deal. Sound familiar?
What we all need to remember is that we’re not voting for the Prime Minister, we’re voting for our local MP. PMs can change at the drop of a referendum, we know that. We all saw what happened to David Cameron (awks). And PMs can be democratically replaced without an election because – whether rightly or wrongly – the people don’t vote for the leader of a party.
And remember that a British PM isn’t a dictator, they don’t work alone. They need a team of people, a Cabinet to do the job. So when you’re looking to vote, take a look at other candidates in the party too, watch and decide if they can negotiate and debate too because that’s what they’ll be doing in their job.
So don’t focus too heavily on whether Corbyn has done up his top shirt button, and concentrate a little less on what May’s reuse of her trouser suits and check out what your local MP has got to say. How will they affect your local community? What can they do for you?
British politics is set up to divide. There will be those people who are excited about the election and then there are the Brenda’s of the country who would have unanimously cried ‘not another one’ as yet again Westminster sets out to divide the nation. And that’s the crux of the problem: politics is divisive and there’s nothing that’s going to change that.
Each individual faces their own trials and tribulations; everyone’s circumstances are different and every person has their own issues close to their hearts. And it’s okay to think for number one – you’ve got to because no one else will truly understand how you’re feeling about your unique situation.
What winds me up is that British politics I’ve very good at causing a divide. Just take a look at the way our parliament is set up – the government facing the opposition – it’s designed to create an ‘us’ and ‘them’. And heaven forbid it works.
And then there’s the politicians themselves. Have you seen the sort of playground insults MPs hurl at each other across the room? It’s the kind of stuff that should be left on the playground, let alone spoken by the people who’ve been elected to run our country. If our politicians get away with calling each other a condom (yep, Boris Johnson called Nick Clegg a condom) then what’s stopping us from hurling abuse at our neighbours in the streets? What a fantastic example our leaders are setting.
So I ask you to do a bit of research yourself, ignore the people shouting their opinions at you on Facebook and make your own mind up, even if it means drawing a willy on your ballot paper just to make a point. Don’t vote the way your mates are voting for the sake of it, put an ‘X’ in the box that best suits you.
(P.s. Don’t slag off your pals for voting differently to you either, okay? To quote Aretha Franklin, show some R-E-S-P-E-C-T for our differences.)