In defence of not voting during elections.

During the last general election in the UK, I was in a predicament. For the first time during an election, I didn’t know who to vote for. Without writing specifically on each party and why I didn’t support them; I just didn’t agree with any of their messaging.

So, as a result, I didn’t vote.

At the time my social media was rife with people lecturing their followers about why they should vote, and the historical importance of voting.

Of course, the obvious counterpoint to this is that voting is a choice, and you can choose not to be involved.

The other reason, my reason, is that not voting does a better job of making yourself heard than voting for a party you only partially align with.

Politics is an industry in itself, albeit a very confusing one. But, underneath it all, there’s a currency; votes.

Imagine a political party as a sweet shop, and their policies as the candy in the display cases. Their business makes money by displaying the sweets that people are most likely to buy, and putting sweets that people don’t enjoy on display will just result in nobody buying any.

By voting for a political party you don’t actually align with is like buying the sweets you don’t enjoy, you’re just encouraging them to keep those policies instead of changing them.

Probably not the best analogy, but I continue.

If 30% of the population don’t vote, the political parties will just see these as unclaimed potential voters. Their goal is to win these unclaimed votes, and turn them into supporters; so of course they will change their policies and marketing to accommodate these potential voters.

If we just vote for a party for the sake of voting, this disrupts this important process and results in there being no progress within the political parties.

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