When I read the above headline, I had to check the publication date twice, just to make sure that the previous day’s date was not March 31st. But, unfortunately, not only was this decision newsworthy, it was an accurate description of the political awareness standards of millions of British people aged between 18 ~ 25.
Dan Brooke, Channel 4’s Chief Marketing and Communications Officer was quoted as saying:- “Less than half of under-25s voted at the last election so we’ve engaged the most powerful weapon that we have at our disposal to try and boost that number – switching off their favourite TV channel for the day!”
Mr. Brooke, along with his cohorts in the higher echelons of Channel Four’s programming and production, with their presumably vast knowledge of their target audience, have decided that the only way to encourage the people whom normally slump or slouch in front of the flat-screens to actually accept that they live in at least a good replica of a democracy, is to switch off all the re-runs and interminable repeats of all the American garbage which is pumped into their audience’s antennae, and tell them, repeatedly, that it might be a good idea to vote!
Times without number I have heard variations on the basic theme of ‘There will never be any change’ or ‘politicians; they are all the same, and to vote only encourages them’. These lacklustre statements infuriate me beyond belief, for I am a child of the Second World War; I was born in the North-East as the Battle of Britain was being fought in the air over London and the fields of the South-East of England, when Nazi bombers were randomly bombing British cities, when a ruthless dictatorship was attempting to prove, in the prophetic words of King George Sixth, that “Might was right!” To understand my anger, try reading the matter-of-fact diaries of the War, typical of which was that of Thursday 15th August 1940, up here in the North-East. We were fighting for our lives in those dark days; and our descendants cannot even be bothered to go out and bloody well VOTE!
My father, along with many tens of thousands more, had volunteered for the British Armed Forces on Day two of the War; my Uncle who served in the Royal Artillery paid the ultimate sacrifice, and is remembered in a sleepy Normandy village. They volunteered, and sometimes they died, so that their grandkids might live, snug in their centrally heated homes; cocooned with their televisions, their computers, tablets, smartphones, and all the other techno-freakery which allows them to photograph someone, and send it halfway around the world in a second: and they have to be reminded to VOTE!
Give me Strength!