The General election is now only 3 days away.
If for a variety of reasons you’re not already counted and registered, and theres been a huge surge in trying to get young people to vote. I mean why? And what is really in it for the young person? will they get a free download? or be entered into a prize draw?
Here is one of the over reactionary, done in a war time recruitment style posters going around.
Its almost as if it sounds like it should be made compulsory for young people to vote, its getting to that level.
If you’re a young person, heres 9 reasons why you shouldnt bother voting in the General election.
1. Generally the people who are in the government talk to the people who vote for them. They’re not talking to young people, so why bother voting for them.
2. Nothing that happens to you in your life has anything to do with what happens on TV with those people who shout at each other.
3. Adults over the last few years have made the best decisions for the country, and for your interest at heart, so why not trust them again.
4. You’re just a big child, you dont really know anything about really important things, probably the only thing you’re interested in at the moment is trying to get cheap train fares back from Uni, or the price of a pint on student night, or your exams. Why bother fretting over a bit of politics as well, why vote at all, just keep doing the stuff in your life – why worry about politics and voting?
5. It seems so hard work. walking somewhere – cant it just be done from clicking the buttons on the Xbox?, i mean its such an inconvenience going outside to vote.
6. You keep being told you’re not engaged with politics. Every time theres a flipping election, ‘young people are disengaged’ so you’re better off keeping up the stereo type, after all all the other stereotypes adults have of young people are right as well arent they? So why not put on your hoody, get pregnant and collapse in the streets drunk then queue up to the dole queue and threaten people in the shopping centre, whilst taking stressful exams that get easier every year and just be bored. Dont bother changing peoples perceptions of you – you’re disengaged from politics – dont bother voting! Live the dream!
7. Dont bother voting – just march instead, theyll be plenty of marches coming up, anti brexit, anti austerity, anti climate change, anti tax cuts or benefit cuts. If you dont vote, think of all the exercise you can get, placards you can make and travel to london you can do protesting. Itll be amazing, all yours if you dont vote (of course you can vote and still march, but really you have a chance to change things before then…)
8. Theres no point in voting, after all, all the people you see on social media are going to vote in the same kind of way, so your vote isnt going to make a difference. Even though they all live all over the country, they can be your vote. Why bother, they’re already going to.
9. Citizenship classes were boring.
If these are the actual reasons why you’re not going to vote, then please reconsider. You have the opportunity to be make a real difference, it doesnt matter where you live or what the likelihood is. If larger numbers of young people vote every time then politicians will have to start taking you seriously, as seriously as they do older people in society.
For every piece of legislation or service or resource or education system that has been changed in your lifetime and penalised you – these have been decisions made by the government – and they get away with it because they know that you probably dont realise this, and you wont vote until you’re at least 30, thats when you discover the news channel for the first time, and start paying taxes. But you already pay taxes, and have benefits, or didnt get education grants, or cant get a house.. so all of these things already affect you.
Remember, the government really does not want you to vote. The proof of this is that in the last 7 weeks, not a single encouragement to register to vote was put out on social media by the conservative government, if that isnt an indictment that theyre threatened by you, i dont know what is.
Adults in society dont really want you to vote, not in large numbers, and start taking politics seriously. But that and being able to change things should be enough of a reason to do so. If you dont know stuff, find out stuff. Do the same research you do for choosing your next phone, compare and contrast the parties as if theyre new phones, what they say, what they do, and what theyve done before. None of them are perfect, all have skeletons in their closet, so vote for the one that listens to you and promises something that you might like for now or the future. and if they say nothing, or think of you just as an economic entity (ie just to get a job or house) then think about what kind of world that will be.
Take the opportunity to make a difference, everyone only has 1 vote. Make yours and make it count.
Take a selfie at the polling booth, go in fancy dress, brave the rain, and vote. Go on. Take a lead from the millions of young people that voted in scotland over the last few years, their politics has changed considerably. Go on.