Monday, 4 March 2013

Why people don't vote!

There is always a vote on somewhere. Either some politician is found speeding whilst snorting coke or another referendum is provided to the people to ignore. The problem is that due to our over populated calander folk just cannot be bothered to vote. During meideval times you just lived on the land of the local Lord and you got taxed dependant on what money your Lord needed. Usually they would keep increasing until you ended up working full time raising crops for the rich as your kids ate nothing. Since those times there have been many uprisings of people to gain the freedom to vote on those you wish to decide the laws of the land and the direction of the country. It has all become rather complex with different powers being devolved to different levels of government, local councils, devolved parlaiments and then the UK government who just seem to ignore what they promised and those who voted for them and make it up as they go along.



You would be lucky to find 50% of eligible voters turn up to cast their opinion in any election and the problem seems to be the feeling of utter hopelessness. Our media constantly warn us about different things that are definetly going to ruin your life, like economic policies that will make you homeless or immigration policies which will mean you job goes to some romanian gypsy. This constant bombardment of negative press and scaremongering obviously means half the people are hiding behind their couch covering their eyes and shaking like a junkie needing a fix. This however isn't the case in reality. Most folk just live pretty boring normal lives, they struggle to get the kids to school, then they go to some boring job and chat about TV with their colleagues until they get to go home and ignore their family some more as they watch whatever nonsense ITV has decided is a good programme to show at 9pm. People are bored of the lies, they don't see change, well not direct change that affects their life. Nothing tangible happens to most people so why should they bother to vote?

The other half, who actually do vote are mostly really passionate about why you should vote and go around with stalls and knocking on doors telling you who they think is the best person and how much better it will be for you if you agree and make that trip to the local school to cast your vote. They end up totally bewildered by those people who just cannot be bothered. They hate them. Its a bit like having a conversation between an athiest and a jehova's witness where they just cannot believe anyone could possibly be happy by just never thinking that there is perhaps a big omnipitent being making judgement on us all and directing the mundane existance we lead. People are very quick to judge those who do not vote as being poor or unintelligent but what they fail to realise is that they are all part of the problem. If you really thought about it all and wanted to grasp every detail very clearly you would need to do the equivalent amount of reading as you would to attain a degree in art history from Cambridge. I mean the amount of documents the different government parties pump out is absurd. What else is absurd is that in the day and age where i can happily sit in my front room ordering anything I could ever need from toilet roll to a vindaloo and a plasma screen TV we have to actually drive down to some school or library to cast our vote. And how do they know I am eligible, thats right i need to remember to take my voting slip with me. What a carry on all that is for the normal working person. Here's an idea why not just post pictures up with a 6 word sentence about them and let folk vote with facebook likes.

So how exactly do we solve this crisis in democracy, the same democracy we are saying is required by countries that we have spend billions bombing for the last decade. Well firstly we need to find a better way of voting that can perhaps just be a lot quicker and easier. We also need to have a really clear idea of what people stand for, the best way of understanding this is probably just some sort of bio of the person. I have no doubt had the last UK election had some bio profile for each politician David Cameron would not be as nearly important as he is today. After all he is perhaps the most privileged person to serve office in decades. Why would any white van man think that he was going to make the country better for them, knowing he is pals with a bunch of multi million pound businessmen. In the US they like to have a series of elections to whittle down the hundreds of candidates until the final vote where more people come out and decide on the overall winner. There is some merit in this at it appeases both those really into politics and also those who can't be bothered until the final game. Another idea that has been touted during the referendum agreement for the independence of Scotland is letting 16 and 17 year olds vote. Seems fair given they can get married and die for our country that we would allow them to vote. But apart from that it means that schools can get them all excited about it and perhaps this tide of apathy will start to turn. If someone begins voting they are likely to continue doing it, and the only way to break the cycle is to get a new generation of kids from areas with traditionally poor turnout to vote. In Schools there is a captive audience and the school can use the voting as a discussion point for many subjects not just history and social studies but also Maths, English, Science, etc all discussing the points that affect their fields in the coming election. This would then encourage more people to vote, and you never know some of them may acctually go and tell their parents all about it, and when they ask for the lift down to the local voting office the parents themselves may just pop in to cast their vote seen as though they are present. Let's hope the Schools embrace this and the success of this age category for voters is carried into other elections in the future. After all the mistakes a nation makes at the polls will haunt those youngest for longest!