Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Voted Tory; a mistake but not a life sentence.

Let's be honest, as soon as you approach politics people usually either go into their shell or come out all guns blazing, opinion ready and up for a debate till the death.

It's a subject that can either lead to a healthy discussion or a genuine, and in my eyes completely wrong, judgement. Individuals will very quickly presume that depending on whether you voted one way or another, you're either anti-poor and pro caviar feasting or haters of war, regardless of motive, benefit eaters, and tree hugging enthusiasts.

Am I exaggerating a bit?

Well, yes, of course I bloody am but the underlying message is ghastly true. Regardless of who you are, if you voted on either side of the questionable left or right line, you are put into the same bracket as everyone else who has.

Don't believe me? Well here's an example, a story from my own experience.

Last week I went out for a few pints before leaving uni for easter. I found myself in the last pub of the night, this one closing at an hour too late for justifiable alcohol consumption and was filled with people we will simply brand as inappropriate for daylight in their state of intoxication. I was with a mate from my house and because we saw no spare tables, we asked politely if we could sit with two girls and a bloke who had a couple of spare seats to their table. The three of them were Geordies, or from Newcastle if you'd like the more geographic term, around their 30s if you're curious. We sat, we drank, we spoke and were, for the most of it, enjoying each other's company. Up until, somehow, something came up about current affairs and the opinions of politicians came up with it. This lead onto what our views were and I, idiotically and not knowing I was dangling a huge turd over a bigger fan, stated, 'I presume you're labour being from your part of the country'. Two of the three politely said 'aye man'. One of the two girls, however, replied with a venomous 'you're not a Tory are you?' I responded with a simple, 'well I voted Tory, I wouldn't say that would mean I am a Tory'. It's as if with my vote I was branded with a mark meaning I was only ever one political ideology for the rest of my life, like a cow with a fat Conservative Tree printed of my arse. What followed was, to put it simply, a barrage of how I single handedly ruined the country and was responsible for the closure of mines 15 years before my birth, was the man who stripped individuals on the other side of the country of their homes and welfare, and all round a 'top twat'- this not being a new title and gave me a sense of deja vu. I gave my viewpoint back stating I voted for what I thought was best at the time but had some regrets now. She continued to shout and get teary eyed while I, innocently I promise, sat back and listened. It was only when she claimed that Margaret Thatcher was a murderous cow that I said goodnight and left, apologising for causing such offence in my honesty.

I'm not saying everyone is like this! Just an ignorant few which in society, sadly, doesn't seem to be so few.

So, what's my point?

Well, beside the point that branding someone with one political ideology just because they voted on, let's face it, one of two sides, is absolutely and disgustingly wrong, it did make me think of my vote last summer.

Do I regret it?

I guess I do.

Being from where I am, a Conservative seat was almost guaranteed. In fact I've heard locals from my area state they'd move out the constituency if it was anything but Tory; they said this as they smoked their pipe and tipped their butler for bringing them their overdue cup of Earl Poshy Washy tea.

However, as the Junior Doctors' strikes still linger around in one form or another, the teachers come out screaming that forcing every school to become an Academy is a failure of the education system, the Chancellor's budget is ripped apart for having more holes in it than a poor man's socks, and the two buddies from Eaton, Mr. Cameron and Mr. Fuzzyhead Johnson, argue over to stay in or out of Europe, I do begin to question whether, regardless of their manifesto, I have contributed in some way to bringing in a bunch of socially obsolete twats who, regardless of endless petitions and strikes, are inadequate to listening to the very real issues that are bombarding very real people.

Now, I'm not here to say that if you voted one way or another that means you're right or wrong. I firmly believe people vote with the context of their situation strongly in their ticking hand. That means it's hard to argue against someone's vote when you don't know the reasons behind their vote and the background they have which contributed to it.

What I'm saying is that it's OK to sit back and think, 'am I one or another?'

People say that sitting on the fence is wrong and that you should pick a side and get behind it.

I think this is complete BS.

I voted Tory because I agreed with some of their points last summer. I didn't vote Labour because I didn't agree with some of their points and couldn't imagine Ed Miliband being our leader.

Now I'm seeing that perhaps I was little naive and that maybe I didn't 'read between the lines'. But this isn't to say I'm ashamed of what I did in my first eligible general election vote. I've just learnt from it. I could very well, in the future, vote Tory again.

Don't brand someone because they voted for one way or another. It's not a club your joining. Simply the execution of our right to vote.

I voted Tory and regret it but this isn't to say that I wouldn't do it at some other point in the future.

1 comment:

  1. This blog piece is absolutely amazing! I love it! It's thoughtful, reflective, responsible, and engaging. And if it doesn't sound patronising, I think it's an important stage in your development as a citizen. Thanks so much for sharing it