So I’ve let the dust settle a little and two weeks on after the general election it’s hard to know what the general feeling is about another five years of Tory rule. I watched the horror unfold on my twitter/facebook/TV and it’s fair to say that everyone else was pretty horrified too. EVERYONE. So why and how did the Tories win so convincingly?
I’m not going to go in to that here. It was more a statement of shock than a question. What was interesting was the reaction on the following day. I read tweets and statuses where people couldn’t get out of bed. There was a real sense of hopelessness and dread of what is to come.
I felt all those things when I woke up on the morning after the election. But my overriding feeling, strangely, was one of optimism; optimism, fuelled by anger. What if Labour had got in? Or the Liberals? What would have happened? I’m guessing and this is just a guess, that there would have been a renewed feeling of hope and that change was on the way. The Tories were gone and whoever was in, was going to make it all better.
But would this have been the case? Would anything change in reality? Remember that feeling when New Labour got in power in 1997? Well that soon turned to shit didn’t it? Which is why I felt quite optimistic when I found out the Tories were set to stay in government for another five years. There was so much reaction and anger to the result, for a fleeting moment (but I hope it’s not fleeting), I thought it might galvanise people in to some sort of revolution.
Certainly, leading up to the election and with the increased use of social media, I can’t remember a time when so many people became interested in politics. It seemed everyone had an opinion and that everyone cared. I’ve voted some years but recently I haven’t, as I just didn’t trust any politician. To me, it was like hiring a babysitter you didn’t trust, to look after your children. Why would you do that?
But for some reason, this year, I felt it was really important to vote. Mainly to stop other parties I particularly didn’t like (you know the one I mean) and just to have a voice. That voice seemed pointless when the results came through but I justify it by saying I voted for who I thought would be right. It was just that most of the rest of the country disagreed.
So I hope with another five years of Tory rule, this will galvanise people and communities in to seeking alternatives and moving towards positive change. What I fear is that after we get our twenty-five likes on facebook for ranting at the Tories, we’ll just slip back in to apathy and the status quo.