Don’t worry, this isn’t turning into a political blog or anything utterly boring like that.
But I suddenly find that I have become the “boring” person that teenaged me never thought I would be. I actually care about politics. And not just in a “let me post hundreds of crappy political memes on Facebook” sort of way. Though I’ve been known to do that too.
It’s been coming on sort of slowly over the years, but having kids really clinched it for me. I’m not going to say something cheesy about building a better future for my children. That’s not quite what it is. It’s more something my kids have taught me – something like refusing to settle for something I don’t want.
If my kids don’t like what I cook, they don’t freaking eat it. The 2 year old throws his spoon across the room, then bounces his highchair forward until he can reach the breakfast bar. He places his bowl on the breakfast bar, declares “don’t like it”, and then clamps his mouth shut. And NOTHING is getting that mouth open again. Trust me. Nothing.
And that sort of simple determination makes me wonder when I lost that. It makes me wonder when I started thinking that I have to eat whatever choices someone tries to feed me. And I feel angry about living somewhere that has been a Conservative safe seat for nearly 100 years, where voting for any other party seems just about pointless. And I’m angry about being railroaded into a general election that seems to me to seek the elimination of dissenting voices in Parliament. That is #fascism if you ask me.
So when a group of people on Facebook started a campaign for an Independent candidate in our constituency to unseat our useless MP, I joined in. This struck me as something that has a chance. People here won’t vote Labour, but they might vote for someone who will stand up for local interests.
In this age of social media, spreading the word about a people’s movement is a lot easier than it used to be. So I’m using skills I learned from blogging to help make my little contribution to the change I want to see. This means endless lurking on Facebook and Twitter, and mucking about putting slogans on Canva posters. I’m loving it, let’s be honest. But this blog might be a little bit quiet for the next few weeks while I put all my energy into the campaign.
The realist in me knows that we have very little chance. But I’m going to clamp my mouth shut and refuse to eat the politics that are being fed to me. When I tick that box in the voting booth, at least I will be voting for something I believe in, instead of a least worst option. And if we win, well, that story will make one heck of a blog post.