Why You Should Vote

This is different to the kind of things that I normally post, however I love politics and voting is something I'm rather passionate about. 

In the UK there are elections taking place on the 5th May for local police and crime commissioners, as well as London Mayor election and various other, you can find out what you're eligible to vote in here. There is also a referendum taking place June 23rd across the UK about our European Union membership. 

You might be questioning the relevance of all this, thinking that you don't know a lot about politics or you really don't care about the EU and so what's the point in voting. Well there's plenty of reasons to, so I've gathered my top 3 reasons why you should in upcoming elections.

Firstly, people died in the hope that you might be allowed to vote, especially so if you're a woman. In 1918, all men over the age of 21 in the UK were allowed to vote. Women fought to get the vote, and to their voices heard, being partially successful in 1918 when certain women over the age of 30 were allowed to vote. They had to be married to landowners as one of the requirements which just seems bizarre. It wasn't until 1928 that all women in the UK over the age of 21 were allowed to vote. In 1969 the law is again changed, extending the vote to all men and women over the age of 18. Hundreds of people sacrificed their lives in the hope that there would be voting for all, so that our country could be more democratic and representative, and so that you can exercise your right to vote in elections. Not to mention that there are still people fighting for the right to vote across the world. 

Second, how can you complain about the government or democratic institutions if you don't take the chance to vote? I completely understand that everyone is going to have opinions about political parties, and think different things about who is in government, but you can't complain about those things unless you vote. You may not like who is in government and who is representing you, but if you didn't vote, you didn't even try to have your voice heard. Even spoiling your ballot paper is better than not voting at all. The things that we vote for will affect nearly every aspect of your life, whether you think it will or not. Even if you don't vote, it will be your public services that may have cuts happening, your schools may be affected etc. By voting, you are giving yourself a voice that will be heard, by not voting no one will know but you. 

My final reason why you should vote is because young voters have the lowest turnout across the age groups of voters in the UK. In the general election last year, only 43% of young voters actually voted. That's shockingly low, especially considering that in the 1960's over 70% of young voters voted. The fewer young people that vote and care about politics, the more the government can ignore you as your voice is not being heard and you're not making a stand. 

Your voice can only be heard if you exercise your right to vote. If you've received a polling card in the post that mean you're already registered, if not you can check that you're eligible here and register online here before April 18th. 

Bit of a different post, but I hope you enjoyed it! 

Em x

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