My vote

Tomorrow it’s the General Election here in the UK, and the first under the new fixed-term parliament rules. Millions of people will take the opportunity to exercise their democratic right not to vote. In the UK that’s a valid option, but not one I agree with.

I’m not here to say why you should vote, but here’s why I do.

The right to choose whether to vote is precious. Millions have died to have that right and millions more live under rulers who deny them the opportunity to decide their country’s direction. My irregular trips to the polling station are a small way to honour those without a voice.

We all have opinions. Mine are left of centre, someone else’s are right of centre. A third person’s will be to the extreme of one side or the other. I don’t know who these other people are but I do know I’m gifting them my vote if I don’t use it myself. Because they will go to the polls, and they will have a say in the running of my country.

As with many things, it’s easy to be cynical about voting and politicians. And they certainly do much to encourage cynicism which leads to people becoming disenchanted with democracy and their personal ability to change things. Governments are run by by people who want power, and what concerns them is losing that influence. In our system it is elections which give the opportunity to remove that power. It’s what politicians fear and those in charge should live in fear to keep them more honest

This are my reasons for voting. Until a better, more representative way for the public to wield influence comes along I’m sticking with them.

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