SLIDER

Why I'm NOT Voting

Today is the day. May 7th 2015: The day when the entire nation goes into a frenzy to get their votes in for the general election. I on the other hand am at home working today, five minutes walk away from a local polling station yet I will not be voting.

I was in two minds whether to admit to the world that I'm not voting today. I've seen a vast amount of Facebook statuses saying "REMOVE ME OFF YOUR FRIENDS LIST IF YOU VOTED FOR BLA BLA BLA" or "If you don't vote then don't moan". So, I am a little worried (I'll be honest) that readers/friends/family will hate me and I'll ruin my blog BUT then again no one is holding a gun to my head telling me I must vote or I die. It's not a mandatory thing so I certainly don't appreciate people being so ignorant towards people's personal choices.


Firstly, I have no interest in politics and therefore I don't understand terms such as democrats and Nick Clegg. I mean, WHO is Nick Clegg? But that's a whole other misunderstanding on my part. I was never taught politics at school so I am clueless about it all; just like Mr Joey Essex. Maybe the winner of the election this year can take away stupid lessons such as Religious Studies (which I miraculously got an A in) and start teaching children about politics. If religion is an optional thing to believe and take part in, then politics needs to start being introduced to future children.

Secondly, I have no idea what each party has brought to the table in terms of things they will (apparently) change, cut and introduce. I am not someone who is naive to believe in something people will say just because they want something to bad. You do realise everything that each party has brought forward is probably just a pack of lies, right? Of course we all exaggerate when we want something. I mean, I've lost count of times I've promised to make my mother a 'cuppa tea just to get a lift somewhere and then completely failed in the making of the tea. But hey, I got my lift.

This country went to pot a very long time ago. Whilst I appreciate everything this country has fought for over the years (the wars, the freedom, the right for women to vote etc); it was all a waste of time. I don't need to even explain but you get the general picture.

To be quite frank, I think voting is a load of bollox. I am all for people who believe in something so if you have voted in the election then by all means, I respect that :) Everyone has the right to their own opinion and political view!  Of course, I think it is great that we are coming together as a country to determine what happens in the UK within the next five years; but seriously, when do we care otherwise? I should be in the corner right now keeping quiet about my opinions on voting, elections and the government in fear; but I simply refuse to feel guilty about my own personal opinion about it all.

So no, I WON'T be moaning about how the country is running within the next five years purely because I am used to the fact I live in a country who pretend they care about the people when they really don't. If they did, it would be easy to get a job, easy to buy a house and easy to fund further education. JUST LIKE IT WAS EASY TO DO ALL OF THIS IN THE OLD DAYS WHEN THE COUNTRY CARED ABOUT ITS PEOPLE.

So, THIS ladies and gentleman is WHY I refuse to vote. I don't believe in any kind of bullshit that any man or woman has thrown onto the table with a lousy promise that things will change. Things never change and never will. Now let me carry on brainstorming ideas on how to pay back my sky high ridiculous University fees.

33 comments

  1. When David Cameron was voted in I was clueless about politics until I saw the effect of his new policies on my family. Everything you do has been effected by politics, whether it's buying a new outfit (The government set the tax on it) or how much you earn. i.e the minimum wage policy. Whilst I understand where you are coming from, it's in everyones best interest that you vote. Things are not going to change in this country if people have the same attitude towards voting as you do.

    Laura x x x

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    1. Hi Laura,

      I totally understand why people would vote for all of these things we do in every day life. And that I fully support. However, I don't trust anything that ANY party has said they will change which is the reason why I don't want to vote. If by all means things change for the better with what ever party wins; then I may participate in my (optional) vote in future elections.

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  2. Did you know you can ruin your ballot? Cross through the lot and it classes as a 'ruined ballot' which is a vote of no confidence. That basically shows the government you don't trust any of them! I know a lot of younger people will be doing that today and it means a vote doesn't go wasted :)

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    1. Hi Bex,

      I didn't know you could ruin your ballot, no. However, now I know for future elections if I decided to not vote again. Thanks for letting me know!

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  3. Your university fees were ridiculously sky high because the Tories raised them. The Liberal Democrats wanted to scrap them all together, but when they joined forces with the Tories they betrayed their voters (majority of whom voted for them on the back of their £0 tuition fee promise) - prior to that they were relatively affordable, £9k debt is significantly different to £27k debt...

    It sounds to me like you do care, and the that you want the country to return to caring about their people - that is what a labour government wants to achieve, conservatives have been taking from the poor and giving to the rich in the past 5 years, letting the big companies tax evade while more and more hard working families are forced to rely on foodbanks, while capping housing benefits and not capping soaring private landlord rents.

    The big difference in this election and who to vote for is whether you care about yourself or you care about the country, having a voice matters. I really don't want to patronise or condemn your very reasoned arguments - but the things that are causing your apathy are built on the foundations of the errors of the conservative government - that if you didn't want to continue suffering at the hands of,zero hours contracts, uni fees for future students, ease of buying houses, further education, getting a job. it's always the tories that get in the way of these things for the normal people of this country and if you really wanted to see a return to those old days where these things matter then voting against them is literally the only way to make a stand against these things.

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    1. Hi anon.
      I completely appreciate what you are saying but you said it yourself in the second paragraph... 'this is what a labour government wants to achieve''. I have no doubt they want to achieve it but I strongly do not trust any party which is why I haven't voted. If however I see things change for the better with whatever party wins, then I would probably vote in future elections.

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  4. I don't even know where to start with this. HHrrm... I suppose I just have to respect your point of view, and hope, that sometime in the future, given the right information, you might be open to reviewing them. I voted.

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    1. Hi Elizabeth,

      Yes, I am completely open to the idea of voting in future elections. I simply just decided I didn't want to this year round as it would have been an unfair vote on my part. Well done for voting though!

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  5. i know that a right to vote is the same as having a right not to vote, but you do have the option to spoil your ballot which means your vote is counted but you're not helping out any of the other parties. i hope you educate yourself in time for the next election though because democracy doesn't work if everyone doesn't take part, which results in people not getting what they want, and that results in even more people becoming disillusioned and not voting.

    fashion, beauty and an existential crisis

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    1. Hi Bess,

      I didn't know you could spoil your ballot. Again, I make my point clear about educating children more about politics. If i had known this whilst learning in school, then I would have spoilt my ballot today. I haven't said I am against voting which means I am open to the idea of voting in the next election!

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  6. I really admire you for this post and I have to say I totally respect your decision. In the last election (which was the first one I was old enough to vote in) I felt exactly the same way as you, and I've only voted this time because my partner has helped me to understand the different parties and I have personal reasons for voting for who I've voted for if that makes sense.
    Love Holly x

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    1. Hey Holly,
      Thanks for your kind words. I would have loved to have known a bit more about each party but sadly I don't have the time or the initial interest to sit down and educate myself about it. But that isn't the reason why I didn't vote. I just either didn't agree with what a party was saying or I don't trust that any change will be put into place. Maybe in 2020 I will vote :)

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  7. Obviously you have the right to choose whether to vote or not, but it definitely sounds like you care, and I think you should spoil your ballot rather than wasting your vote - but like you said it's your decision. In my eyes we don't live in a democracy and this country needs some sort of revolution, but in the mean time I'm voting =to try and stop certain parties from getting into/back into power

    The Velvet Black // UK Style & Beauty Blog

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    1. I didn't know you could spoil your ballot but I don't see the difference between doing that and not voting at all. It would just be better for the government in terms of numbers in surveys of how many 18-24 year olds got off their backsides to vote. So therefore, i don't feel like i wasted my vote at all. It's optional. I do agree however that the UK needs a revolution but sadly I don't see it happening. As I said; I personally feel like this country went to pot a long time ago.

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  8. Anonymous7/5/15

    Sorry but this made absolutely no sense whatsoever and you need to go and educate yourself because to be honest you're an embarrassment to our generation. Your "reasons" for not voting weren't actually reasons at all just you saying "LOL BASICALLY I DON'T GET IT SO LIKE WHY BOTHER". I'm not entirely sure I would even trust someone like you with a ballot paper anyway but you should have just not bothered making this post if you weren't going to give VALID reasons for not voting. Stick to writing posts about make-up and food and whatever other crap you write about instead of attempting (and massively FAILING) to sound in any way intelligent enough to write about politics.

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    1. Hi anonymous. Nice of you to leave a name but hey, we'll ignore that one. This post was in no way intended as a "REASONS why i'm not voting"; otherwise that is how I would have titled it. I don't have REASONS. I'm just not voting this time round. Whilst I appreciate your opinion (because I am a normal and fair person); I don't appreciate your rude and uncalled for remarks about my blog. This is the thing that really grinds me about anonymous commenters. Let me just remind you; this is MY BLOG, titled BEING ASHLEIGH. You have got me completely wrong as I don't post about makeup or 'crap' at all so maybe educate yourself a little better on people and what they represent as a person before commenting such an ignorant comment. I would also like to remind you that this country is also all about ''freedom of speech''; so not only am I to post on MY BLOG about whatever I like; but it's also everyone's personal discretion whether or not they want to take part in the UK'S optional vote or not. I haven't said I am against voting nor have I said I am against people who vote. I clearly stated I respect people who are brave enough to stand up against opposing parties and support a party they would like to win. This is the first election I am old enough to vote in and I am just personally choosing not to. This doesn't mean to say I won't vote again in 5 years time. P.S I wasn't writing about politics. I used no political terms. I was simply writing why I have decided to not participate in an OPTIONAL vote. If you'd like to discuss this some more, feel free to drop me an email!

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  9. I totally agree that politics (and so many other things for that matter) should be taught in school. I no longer live in the UK so didn't vote today but had I been there, I really don't know who i'd have voted for, purely because of my lack of knowledge on the subject.

    What gets me is that people will slam you and anyone other WOMAN for not voting because women of the past fought for your right to do so, but really, there are so many more (imo) IMPORTANT things for us WOMEN to get through other than the right to vote. As much as people will not like hearing this, men and women do not have equal rights at.all. That's a whole other kettle of fish so i'll leave that there haha

    I really respect you for writing and posting this post Ashleigh, well done x

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    1. Oh Maisie, you're gonna open a new can of worms now haha! I completely agree though. I've been completely slammed by comments and tweets and would say about 85% of them are negative which is sad as i thought we was all entitled to our own opinion. This country and its people can be so shameful.

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  10. Anonymous7/5/15

    "Maybe the winner of the election this year can take away stupid lessons such as Religious Studies (which I miraculously got an A in) and start teaching children about politics. If religion is an optional thing to believe and take part in, then politics needs to start being introduced to future children."

    Yes because learning about world religions, respecting other people's beliefs, tolerance and morals is so unimportant..... If you chose not to learn about politics at school then surely as an adult of 22 years - who obviously does care about the way the country is run - you should have taken the time to read or watch a little bit about the political parties? You probably spent more time writing this blog post than it would have taken to go and have a quick look at the main parties websites? I also find it hard to believe that someone who uses social media a fair amount hasn't seen many things about political parties and what they stand for (on twitter alone there is endless amounts of information).

    "This country went to pot a very long time ago. Whilst I appreciate everything this country has fought for over the years (the wars, the freedom, the right for women to vote etc); it was all a waste of time. I don't need to even explain but you get the general picture."

    So how exactly this country as "went to pot" compared to the "old" days (LOL)? What exactly about your life in a country that provides free education, free health care and the freedom to express yourself (which you have been so keen to point out you have) is so bad? This has all happened BECAUSE OF THE WAY PEOPLE VOTED. Women can actually vote because of the protests... surely if it was a waste of time then we wouldn't be allowed to vote? What part of that is difficult to understand? YOU are making it a waste of time by not bothering to use your vote in any way. You have made a very bold statement and then said that you "don't even need to explain" which to be honest is just another way of saying "I don't know how to explain" so maybe you should think before you make such comments?

    Yes you are entitled to your opinion and freedom to express yourself and yes this is your blog but when you're putting your opinion in a public place with the option for people to make comments on it you have to accept that everyone else has the freedom of speech and opinion too.

    Just because the internet is there for you to share things it doesn't mean that you should. I don't honestly see what the point in posting this was because your other content seems to have some sort of reason, you basically opened yourself up to criticism on your own ignorance.

    "Everyone has the right to believe anything they want. And everyone else has the right to find it fucking ridiculous."

    ...yes I just quoted a Ricky Gervais tweet.

    I hope that you understand in some way why people might find this post "fucking ridiculous" and that after taking the time to read and reply to the comments you might have actually taken something away from it, like maybe the motivation to look into politics a bit more and choose what to do with your vote in 5 years time.

    P.S. Feel free to comment on the fact that this is an Anon, but sometimes people don't want to get into arguments on the internet and open themselves up to catty remarks and negative comments on twitter, blogs etc. I'm choosing to exercise my right to remain anonymous... :)

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    1. Anonymous9/5/15

      After reading your "Anon comment" i have discovered what a nasty person you are. So probably best stay 'anonymous......
      I also think this country has gone to pot.... and do remember the good days, and it isn't like it use to be!!!!! so what have you got to say to that????????
      oh and why we are on the subject, I too did not vote, as it is my right , MY RIGHT, YOU KNOW THE PERSON WHO IS WRITING THIS COMMENT< JUST INCASE YOU DIDNT KNOW< ME!!!!!!!!!
      i chose as a free WOMAN not to vote!!!!!!!!!!!!
      AS this blogger, as you put it gets free NHS and education, well, newsflash, her parents have probably worked all their life to pay contributions towards her education and NHS, so NO it is not free to her as they have paid for their daughter!!!! and after reading her blog i know that she went to UNI and yes paid for it too, so once again, she paid for her education!!!!!!!
      oh and i think i should tell you that this is Ashleigh's blog, so it is not 'public as you put it' people chose to log on and check in on her blog and read, she does not make people read it like it is a newspaper sitting on a shelf in a newsagent for everyone to read, nor is it on the tv for everyone to listen to with the cuppa and biscuit.... you typed in ' being ashleigh' and chose to type your evil and become 'Anon' .
      And i don't respect your swearing, even if it is in quotes, this just makes me realise how evil and filthy you are... in my 'Good old days' my grandmother would have washed your filthy mouth out with soap, i suggest when you feel the need to swear, go and wash with a good quality soap....
      And i WILL feel free to comment on the fact that you are anon, you are a coward and a troll.... people as you said don't not want to get in to arguments, well why don't you instead of mouthing your filth, without putting a name to your spill, look at all these so politicians, that have the front to argue in what they believe and are man/woman enough to put their name forward...... oh but you are choosing to be anon, cos thats your right!!!!! what a load of codswallop......
      well let me introduce myself , Hello I am Mandy Day, nice to meet you, but the pleasure is not all mine......
      Infact i am going to give you a Quote from a film that i think you should go and see.....
      whilst sitting in the cinema with my son, Thomas aged 4, he listened with such interest at the poor girl made to clean and look after her stepmother and two UGLY sisters.....
      you may have guessed the film, yes thats right Cinderella.....
      Her mother always said to Cinderella....
      "Have courage and always be kind" try it someday ...
      Mandy

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    2. Dear Anon...

      1) I didn't choose NOT to learn about politics. I feel we're going around in circles here. If the education system was in a better place then better subjects would be in place. I don't feel as if Religious Studies is a waste of time at all. I clearly care about it enough whilst at school to get an A in it. I think Politics should be a subject that is introduced more into schools so future generations will understand it better.

      2) Yes, I take your comment on board about reading about the political parties and trying to understand it. However, I have already admitted (a few times) that I chose not to educate myself in it purely because I do not agree or believe anything that ANY party brought to the table enough to have a set opinion resulting in the motivation to get down to a polling station to vote. As one of my other commenters said, her vote was reluctant and I wouldn't want to make a half hearted decision on such a big thing. This isn't because i'm too ignorant to read about the parties. I KNOW what each party said they will change. I just don't believe things will change.

      3) What I meant by the country going to pot is quite obvious. It certainly is not because "I don't know how to explain". I simply didn't want to digress on what I meant in fear of opening a new can of worms for trolls to pick on. Yes, I agree we have a fantastic NHS service. However, it does nothing for me, my family or the people of this country. As someone who has done work for the NHS, I have enough experience under my belt to know that a free health service encourages a lot of people to take advantage of such a brilliant thing who are quite frankly sponging off the government. Sadly, it's the working class and other tax payers who are paying for this.

      4) My blog isn't a public place at all and I wanted to address this point more than anything. My blog is a place for me to express myself in any way I feel I want to. I agree with Mandy below that I do not ask people to log on and read, follow or check back to see what I've been up to. However, it's a blog readily available to read so I respect negative feedback which is constructive. I don't however respect ignorant comments from people who haven't got the decency to leave a name. Many other people have (even other negative ones) so I don't feel why you need to hide.

      "Just because the internet is there for you to share things it doesn't mean that you should." is one of the most ridiculous statements I've ever read and is the one point that really proves you're a narcissistic and vile person. Maybe look up the definition of what a blog is and educate yourself in that before making such an absurd comment.

      5) Please don't swear on my blog or quote rubbish quotes. (Pet hate)

      6) "Choose what to do with your vote in 5 years time" -- I have already made a choice on what to do with my vote and that is to not vote at all. I'm not going to justify myself to you anymore. You've clearly said people are entitled to their own opinions too and I respect that you feel very passionate towards politics and the outcome of big choices in this country. However, please respect mine. Just because I am in a minority that opposes you doesn't mean I am a bad person. I have good morals.

      7) I am aware you you chose to hide behind 'anonymous' however you made that choice when so many other people (even people I know!) have been brave enough to leave an identity. If you didn't want to spark such negativity publicly with a name then you had the choice to send me an email.

      I hope you one day realise that just because people don't agree with whatever belief you have; it really doesn't make a difference to them as a person. However, I guess some of us are kinder than others.

      Kind regards.
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    3. Dear Mandy,
      Thank you for your comment. I too agree (and preach) that the education system is actually not free and never has been. You can't please everyone :) Hope you & Thomas enjoyed Cinderella. Great film!
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  11. I didn't vote as well as I am not into politics too much. Of course I know who Cameron is etc but as I don't know much I prefer to not vote

    Dominika

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    1. This is how I feel too! Thanks for your comment Dominika!

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  12. I'm from the US so I feel like there is no way that I could even begin to feel comfortable discussing voting rights/politics in the UK. Regardless I think that everyone should have the right to voice their own opinions on things (especially on THEIR blog). I personally have voted in the two elections I've been eligible to vote in and although I believe in voting I also feel like the politics in my country have gotten out of hand and I don't have as much faith in my country as I would like to. I understand someone being disillusioned, having a lack of interest, or simply not being educated enough on it. Students over on my side of the pond could use some more time learning about voting instead of spending a 1/4 of the year preparing for a standardized test.

    Still, I don't see the reason to leave comments filled with such harsh or disapproving words. It's not like if someone increases their level of rudeness you'll magically change your mind or admit some sort of imaginary guilt. You're allowed to do as you please and I refuse to condemn you for it.

    -M
    www.violetroots.com

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    1. I feel like people are trying to make me feel bad about my decision to not vote but as I said in the post; I will not be made to feel guilty about my own personal opinion. Sadly, some people just can't seem to grasp the idea of this :)

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  13. I agree that we should totally be educated before we are 18 and can vote, but I really think voting (even if it is to spoil your ballot or leave it blank) is a better option. Spoiling the ballot reduces apathy and tells the country (if enough do it) that more parties should be thrown into the mix. That's partly how 7 parties are in the main running this year, instead of just 3.
    I guess I only know about Politics and Ideology because I studied it, but as we have the Internet, we must all make the effort to read manifestos and educate ourselves on the parties that could run our country.

    Joelle x
    FebruaryGirl.

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    1. Agreed however I never knew you could spoil your ballot. SO, if I had been given better education in learning about politics (and a lot of people agree); then we would have a better understanding.

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    2. Anonymous8/5/15

      To be fair, educating about politics to children it's quite a reasonable point, however there's a minimum of understanding about it, such as the fact that you can spoil the ballot, that everyone should be aware, and all it takes is to show the smallest interest about the country, and google "voting uk". The lack of knowledge you show on this post, doesn't reflect the bad education towards politics, but the lack of interest and misinformation of young people towards it, merely because they're too lazy to care.
      when woman protested and won the right to vote, there wasn't internet with all the information you need to make a valid option, and even so, everyone was aware of what they needed to do.
      Looks like you're waiting for someone to mouth-feed you with all bips and bops about this, but living in a society implies that we've to get out of our zone, and take interest for other things that weren't thought at school. Your post merely states that you don't care about the country nor its politics, and not that you don't believe in the different parties.

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    3. Hello. I totally take your comment on board and yes, I agree I should have educated myself better. I totally agree I (like many other young people) have no interest in politics so I would find it extremely difficult to educate myself in something that I quite frankly find boring. I have been completely honest towards in the post and ADMITTED I don't care about the running of this country anymore simply because it went to pot a very long time ago. Therefore I have given up believing in it. Raw truth right there but it's how I feel and no one can change my personal opinion in which I am freely entitled to.

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  14. Personally I think Politics is purposefully left out of the education system to make the public easier to sway. I know a lot of people who just voted who their friends are voting for or just whatever they felt like because they didn't do any research. The thing is you are aware of this so you did have the chance to go away and research each party and see what they stand for.

    As for "Things never change, never will" - things have changed. The Tories' last manifesto did say they would raise tuition fees, start privatising parts of the NHS, not tax bankers budgets and that's exactly what they did. These parties don't really pull surprises out of a bag - whatever they've stated in their manifestos, they will go about and do it. For example, this year Labour promised to raise minimum wage to £8 in the next five years, decrease tuition fees to £6k and protect the NHS. If you really think they'd promise these things and not go about actioning them - they'd be in a lot of trouble. While politicians are sketchy and full of false promises - manifestos are very important and cannot just be optimistic lies. Otherwise it would be a repeat of Hitler who found people believed his false promises and once he got into power he disregarded everything and went about fulfilling his personal hate. Things like that will not and CAN not happen in this day and age. And if it does? It's yours and our responsibility to protest and action against it.

    I think the main problem in this day and age is everyone is shocked that we're still screwed over by these people. But think about how much worse it was back in the days when Kings and Queens ruled us? Then think, how were they stopped? Change doesn't just happen naturally - it's forced to happen. And until we stop being lazy and complacent and expect others to fix our problems - we're not going anywhere.

    This isn't an attack towards you by the way, you posted something that will spark debate and discussion and this is my opinion. I hope you fill in that missing Politics education yourself and maybe try voting or even spoil your vote next time :)

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    1. I take your comment on board and respect you for leaving your identity when your thoughts slightly oppose mine. I agree with a lot of things you've said and of course I think we as people of this country play a big part in how this country is run. If we want things changed, we have to go about changing them. However, as I've stated various times... I'm not totally against voting and i'm not saying i won't vote in the next election. I just personally felt I couldn't sway with what party to vote for THIS TIME ROUND because I didn't truly believe in anything any one party was saying. I do actually have some knowledge of what each party was bringing to the table so i wasn't totally clueless. I feel a lot of people got the total wrong end of the stick with what I was trying say whereas some people totally understand what I meant. Politics and any debatable subject is sometimes hard to communicate across in words. So I guess what I am trying to say is yep, I may end up voting next year if I truly feel I can support one party in everything they say!

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  15. Interesting post. Can see why you chose not to vote- there is a hell of a lot of unnecessary aggro that surrounds politics. I only chose to vote because a few issues struck a chord with me. Completely agree with there being too many opinionated people who are ready to judge others before they judge themselves. Brave post!

    Ben | www.twentyfirstcenturygent.com

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