Life: Why voting in the Snap General Election is ACTUALLY IMPORTANT #BloggersWhoVote

I’ve always
been told that there are a few things that you should never, ever talk about at
the dinner table; sex, politics and religion. I’ve tried to keep the same
attitude on my blog but I think it’s about time that I take a step back and
address just how important voting in the next general election is to you, the
reader, as a person and the country as a whole. I’m going to stay away from
discussing my own political alliances– although I think it’s perfectly clear on
social media where my loyalties lie- but instead share WHY it is important to
go down to the polling station on June 8th to make your voice and
your opinion matter.

Politics is
always a tricky one to discuss, particularly with all of the differing opinions
– even within my own family, with people who have been brought up in the same
environment and economic zone, even by the same people in some cases – there is
a significant amount of difference in voting patterns and political party
choices. It doesn’t matter what our opinion on BREXIT is, because at the end of
the day, it’s happened and now that Article 50 has been triggered, there’s very
little standing in its way. In the midst of all this political chaos, Theresa
May has called for a snap General Election and as a country we should unite by
going down to the polling booths and casting our votes.

There are,
of course, quite a few problems. I’m going to veer my point here towards one of
those problems in particular. I am 23 years old now, and consider myself part
of the “young people” group. I’m especially interested in politics and have
been for some time but this is not necessarily the case for everyone in my age
bracket. There is a particularly large proportion of young people who, for
whatever reason, have found themselves completely disengaged from politics.
Perhaps it’s that they see no way out. Perhaps they believe that ‘all the
politicians are the same.’ Perhaps they just generally have no interest in
politics at all. However, it’s these people- these disengaged, disinterested
young’uns- that have the most to say when things go wrong. People who criticise
the government’s choices, people who criticise budget cuts and redistribution
of funds – these are the people who are not voting.

As people, we
are absolutely privileged to be allowed the opportunity to vote for the
political party of our choice and have a say in what happens in our country. I
hate to refer back to the old clichés, but people have actually DIED for this
right on our behalf and that should not be scoffed over. We are each given a
voice through our vote- in spite of what you might think, in spite of what the
media tabloids might say, every vote matters and your vote is just as important
as the next person. Imagine if everyone had the attitude of “well, my vote won’t
make a difference!” No one would vote! We, as young people, are the voices of
our generation: our vote is vitally important. We are the people who are going,
in 5 years’ time, to have to deal with any repercussions of the next government. We are the people who
will have to live with the choices made for us by other people. What leg do we
have to stand on if we haven’t actively gone out and voted?

Don’t just
vote for somebody because your parents do – perhaps what is good and right for
your parents actually goes against what you believe in. Perhaps the party that
your parents vote for doesn’t take the best interests of people like YOU into
consideration. Read up on each party’s manifesto. Have a look into the kind of
person that the MP for your constituency is. Look at their beliefs and see if
they match up to your own. Don’t go into that polling booth blind – you need to
know exactly what you are voting for and why. It’s so easy to get sucked into
what the media is saying and be blinded by that, as well – remember that
newspapers and broadcasting agencies are owned and run by people with their own
political agendas. There are newspapers that are blatantly veered towards one party
in particular, and this is true of both sides of the spectrum – don’t believe
everything you read in the newspaper, as there’s always a bigger picture.

If you haven’t
already done so, make sure that you’re registered to vote. It is SO easy to do
so and only takes a few minutes. If you won’t be in the country at the time of
the vote or have difficulties in getting out and about to polling booths, apply
for a postal or a proxy vote. Don’t let your vote go to waste.

Register to vote today.