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June 1, 2017

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Personality Politics And Historical Consequence


In the aftermath of the deplorable events in Manchester we have seen an interesting development when one contrasts the leaders of the two parties in respect of their actions. It is fair to say that no one wishes to make political capital from any tragic event, less so one involving children and on home turf. Therefore I'd applaud the temporary halt in campaigning by both parties whilst the immediate aftermath was dealt with. (Even if May seems to be overplaying her hand in a desperate attempt to look statesmanlike.)


However, The current leader of the labour party not only said the right things, but in this hour of sadness and reflection, he did the right thing. Not for political gain or voter approval, or media spin. 

Both leaders of each party visited Manchester, both attended the vigil, and signed their condolences. Doing what any person of societal position does, and rightly must do.


However, I for one believe Jeremy Corbyn would have been there regardless of his current status. The man and his actions over the past three decades speak to a moral character that is, and certainly has been, very much lacking in front line UK politics of late (on both sides of the House). 

The simple truth is that politics of the last twenty years had become very much the thinking persons equivalent of a magnolia wall. The differentiations between parties were so infinitesimally small as to be barely exist at all. 


Not since my youth have I witnessed a shift towards so diametrically opposed positions on either side of the House. This shift can only be a good thing, since it outlines the need for politics, the need for voters to register, the need for democracy, the need for debate and the need for people to engage across all levels. We are, in my view, at one of those generationally pivotal points in history, a crossroads if you will. In years to come those who study this period may well look back at our choices and the as yet unknown consequences of them, and judge them to be monumentally important.


Today I learnt that half a million young voters had registered since the election was confirmed, some mere moments ahead of the deadline. One thing is for certain, whatever the outcome on June 8th, this appreciable tangible difference has made people care again - about not only their future, but also that of others, and for a country that seems to exist in a permanent past, that has to count for something.



That change has mostly been affected on the opposition benches, and as a result throws into stark relief the gulf between the ordinary British citizen and the current power base. The electorate has seemingly been slumbering for the past twenty years, but the slumber is over, and it may yet be a rude awakening. 

As for the two party leaders? People will, I hope, vote on policy not personality, yet it is undeniable that the difference in the approach of the two figureheads will play a part in people's decisions. Given their respective records, I know whose word I would trust, and therefore whose judgement, to lead a government after June the 8th. 

We can make it happen. And for the sake of those historians yet to come, and their judgements on us, I feel we must make it happen. For politics is nothing without integrity, and the votes of the many, may yet unseat the few.


Making a difference starts with the belief that you can, and the momentum is with the leader whose integrity and poise really is the difference in this campaign. He is proof that we can make difference.  And when I hear May's insincere words and empty sloganeering, I know that the only choice is Jeremy Corbyn's Labour.



Sarah Jayne Ellis for Political Provocateur








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