At the end of my last lesson today we were having a discussion about politics in this country and what my thoughts were – something I’m very grateful for. The typical defeatist arguments were there “How can you do everything you’ve said you want to do?” but for me the one question stuck in my mind was “Why local buses? Why local issues? There are more important issues in the world”. I was a bit offended and disturbed by the narrow-mindedness of such a question.
Let’s put this into perspective, I’ll use my bog standard local issue of buses:
- Frequent buses on the road that fit in with people’s lives (like the ones we see in Southampton) would lead to less cars on the road.
- Less cars on the road mean less Co2 emissions, meaning we would be doing our part on a small, but important, scale to reduce climate change.
- People who financially cannot afford or physically use a car have a cheaper alternative than if they called for a taxi.
There are many more knock-on effects from just this one, apparently small, important issue. I find it incredibly worrying that people who are of my generation have this defeatist, individualistic mentality. A friend of mine, much more “radical” than I, said that me and her wanted the same things – but we had different ideas about how to achieve it. What I believe in is local democracy, I believe that power should be decentralised to the lowest possible level. I believe that local communities should have the power to decide what is best for them in everything. Including their health, education and other public services (notice the word PUBLIC there). I believe that things like transport, the NHS, energy, The Post Office should be nationalised AND decentralised for the reasons why I have already mentioned. I believe that buying local should be a much more desirable option than importing millions of tonnes worth of food, which we end up wasting enough anyway. I believe businesses like Amazon, HSBC should be made to pay the right amount of tax (by the way it has been estimated that tax avoidance costs the UK £80bn or so a year).
All in all, it’s about the people, it’s about bottom-up approaches to our problems. Democracy I believe is the way forward to achieve it, it’s not perfect at the moment – but WE CAN FIX IT, in fact I am going to argue that it is The Green Party that is giving faith to people who are fed up with the current system, giving people hope instead of fear and giving people a real alternative. What I find absolutely appalling is this insane demoralisation of young people who do not believe we can do it. Just look to Greece, Syriza has been making some wonderful progress so far since being elected not too long ago. They are showing that it’s not all doom and gloom, and so too will The Green Party.
What I am offering Fareham is an alternative, to austerity, to pessimism and to the system that divides us socially and destroys our environment. People are waking up from the complacency and defeatism that they have previously succumbed to. There is a way to change the system and it’s not out of the barrel of a gun – it’s a cross on the ballot paper.
Let’s do it! Let’s go Green for Fareham!
Thank you for reading,
Miles of course I agree with every word you say.
I think you are missing an important point though and it is probably the most important political point that can be made in the current political environment.
The established parties want the young to feel hopeless. They want the young to accept the status quo and to feel that there is nothing they can do to change the world. Individualism suits the ConDems and labour because they are content with a situation where people vote for the least bad option. That is why the forces of the status quo are turning their guns on the Greens and the SNP.
They want us to accept that it is ok to shift wealth from the poor to the already rich, they want us to believe that ‘welfare scroungers’ rather than tax avoidance and the reckless financial system is responsible for the woes of the country. The political establishment is terrified that the example set by Syriza and hopefully by Podermus in Spain will bring the whole rotten system to it’s knees.
You’re absolutely spot on. I can’t believe I missed that.