First of, let me explain something about myself. I wasn’t always the positive, optimistic, loving person I am today. I was an angry teenager, and a rebelling adolescent. It took me a long time to figure out who I am and what my place is in this world. I had very little fate in our future and most of all… our government.
So I didn’t vote. Why should I spend my time, going out, to a voting boot, just so I can help decide what face we’re going to be looking at in the news for the next 4 years?
Because that’s what it felt like to me. No matter who get’s the most votes, our government won’t change, the policies won’t change and the world won’t change. It all seemed like a big charade. Something to make the people feel like they have a say in what happens, when really they don’t.
But here’s the thing…. I was not alone. There are many people out there who feel like I did. Who feel like politics aren’t on their side. Who feel angry and abandoned by their government. And they do one of two things: Either they don’t vote, like I did. Or they vote for an extreme right wing politician who stands out from the other politicians. One who “Say’s what people are really thinking”. Because they feel like, maybe this person can shake things up.
And this is how we continue to get governments that don’t work for us. Because the people who think different from the old ways don’t vote. And so the politicians who could represent them don’t get enough votes, and so the same types of people keep getting elected.
There are politicians out there who can represent you, no matter your views. But if you stay home, because you think these politicians will never get enough votes anyway, then you are making it so. For me, my vote is going to the green party (GroenLinks). I’ve put up a poster on my window, and I’m trying to get others to vote for them as well.
My country, the Netherlands, hasn’t had a left wing, progressive government in 40 years. No wonder it feels like nothing ever changes! This year, however, there’s a good change a progressive cabinet can be formed. As long as they get enough votes. As you can imagine, I’m really exited and hopeful for this.
I am no longer an angry teenager, or a rebel adolescent. I’m a loving, hopeful, optimistic adult. And I believe we can make a difference, one way or an other, as long as we do our best. So next week, I’m going to vote. And I’m voting green.
Are you coming?