I would like to first apologise if the following sounds like a rant or just a grumpy ‘fed up’ voter plea, but nevertheless I can’t resist.
My problem with political campaigns, from the US Elections to the EU Referendum is that ridiculous and petty name-calling is becoming accepted as a natural part of campaigning.
I absolutely love elections and the campaigns that surround them but in an age of spin, soundbites and slogans we are in danger of losing the real meaning behind the vote.
Britain did not fight for democracy around the world so that we could decide who controls our future over a ferocious name-calling battle.
There is no advantage gained as a result of this name-calling. Instead of resonating with voters, it simply turns them away from politics and the election itself.
When emotion and reason collide, emotion invariably wins. A perfect election message is one that pulls at the heartstrings of a voter, while the figures and stats make sense in their minds.
Although I hate to bring back memories of something we were all tired of hearing by May 7th; the Tory message of the ‘long-term economic plan’ worked perfectly.
The reasoning was to cut the deficit and promote growth in the economy. The emotional pull was security and jobs; cutting unemployment and improving living standards. Because the policy was backed by reason and emotion, it provided one of the biggest factors for the shock result of a Conservative majority government.
Passion and fiery debates I welcome hugely in a campaign — sometimes we need more of this. But to be passionate about something does not translate into irresponsible and childish name-calling of all those who disagree with you. Instead debate, go over the statistics, discuss public opinion and explain why exactly your idea, view or policy is better than your opponents.
I appreciate that explaining in detail something you believe in, can at times be arduous and anti sound bite. I also understand that it’s easier to just label your opponent disloyal or unpatriotic. But I promise, if campaigners try to keep their temper and elaborate rather than retaliate, the public will be thankful by the end of this campaign, and maybe I will stop ranting.