Saturday, 22 March 2014

Democracy week at MidKent College

Manning the stall
About a month ago the Medway Liberal Deomcrats were approached by MidKent College's Student Union President Matt, along with other parties who have a Parliamentary members - Us, Labour, Conservatives and the Greens, and asked if we wanted to attend the College's Democracy week.

The idea was, as part of the Bite the ballot campaign to get teenagers to get involved in politics and registered to vote. I spoke passionately at the last Exec meeting saying that we should go, so passionately in fact that I was volunteered to do it!

With a clutch of leaflets and having absorbed a good chunk of the Record of Achievement in government I marched down to the College unsure of what to expect but with trainers on in case I needed to make a quick get away from an army of angry students who felt betrayed about tuition fees.

What I found was a group of young people who were interested and open to what was said by the parties present (the Conservatives weren't there at all) and some were even up for debating!

Although my table was somewhat Spartan, as I was bank rolling it myself as I had been unable to go to HQ and plunder free gear, I was missed by a quite a few people who were drawn in by the much brighter Labour stall who had a mountain of free stuff and biscuits (If only I'd brought Haribo!!!), I did attract some attention. 

It was good to talk to people who have a genuine interest in things and debate with those who were willing to debate. Some had already made up their minds, others were keen to learn more from all of us before making an informed decision. The most important thing was it got people thinking and challenged preconceived ideas. 

Even better than that it got people registered and both Labour and I signed people up to our parties. 

The future of politics is looking grim in this country as every day people are rightly or wrongly casting any ideas of voting aside. The parties are all the same, you can't trust the Party leaders, they're all liars and in for it for themselves... Without voters there can be no change for good or ill and the number of them are dropping away..

It is only by having events such as these that gets people engaged and thinking and more importantly - Voting!

I look forward to the next time... and I will have to dig up some free stuff!

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