“Express your thanks by taking time to vote”

Alex Pratt
Alex Pratt

Tomorrow we all go to the polls to vote in a new Government. I say “all”, but only around 60 to 70 per cent of us will bother to get off our increasingly obese backsides to do so.

The rest will abdicate their opportunity to shape our collective future.

With even the poster-champion for non-voters, Russell Brand now naming a colour, let’s hope the maximum number of us will choose to participate.

There are millions who haven’t even registered to do so.

While sometimes you could be forgiven for thinking that the only reason for having elections is to find out if the polls were right, the truth is more powerful.

It was Abraham Lincoln no less who told us “Elections belong to the people. It’s their decision.

“If they decide to turn their backs on the fire and burn their behinds, then they will just have to sit on the blisters”.

One reason to vote is to say “thanks” to those who have already served and those who have stepped forward to serve us.

Being grateful is a habit that we have lost in many workplaces too, but to acknowledge a big effort, whether successful or not is an approach that we should all foster.

Once elected, you become public property and someone, somewhere will be attacking you for some reason at every moment.

Personally, I don’t understand why you would stand for election in this country. It is a sure-fire way to live under constant criticism, no matter how well you perform. Masochism.

They say that politics is show business for the less attractive, but if you ask me it’s more like stand up for a hostile crowd loaded with rotten eggs and rocks.

No matter how diligently David Lidington and John Bercow have worked for us, it will be their errors that will live after them while the good will eventually be “interred with their bones”.

I’d like to say thank you to our MPs and Councillors, almost all of who get up every day to try to do the best for you and me. Many are stepping down.

This call-out also goes to those standing who are not yet councillors. Thank you for stepping forward. Of course, they won’t get it 100 per cent right, they will champion causes that you disagree with, and they are as imperfect as the rest of us. That’s life.

The most powerful way to express our gratitude is to bother enough to vote.