Thou shalt not talk about religion and politics. That’s the received wisdom. But as a freelance writer I am my own brand, and building and developing it involves writing about all sorts of subjects. So, with the British General Election on the cards in May 2015, I thought I’d write about why I’m voting Green.
Will revealing my political preferences put people off hiring me to write content? I hope not. I like working with marketers and business owners who are bold enough to say what they think, people who are brave, plain speaking and honest. It makes for much more interesting content.
Why vote Green?
As a subscriber to New Scientist magazine I’ve been following the progress of human-generated climate change for many years. It’s the best place to get the unvarnished scientific truth, a million times more truthful than the gutter press and way more accurate and detailed than even the BBC’s patchy but fair coverage. So I know climate change has already reached crisis point.
Because of this, I believe it makes sense to look at everything through a Green filter, through Green-tinted lenses. Everything.
Climate change won’t damage the Earth per se. Our beautiful blue planet will be fine, spinning through space for billions of years to come whatever we do to bugger the climate up. The only thing we’re hurting is ourselves – the human race – and our fellow beings, whether they’re furry or feathery, slimy, leafy, shelled or scaled. The Green Party is the only political party with a wholly Green focus. For that reason I’ll be voting for them again, having already played my part in voting in Brighton’s Green Party council.
The remaining parties are simply not Green enough. Take the Conservatives, whose recent direct mail piece didn’t even mention climate change in their long list of ‘important’ issues. Talk about being behind the curve.
What is it like having a Green Party council?
To be honest I can’t tell the difference as far as everyday services are concerned. They’re as good as ever, the same as they were under any of the political parties I’ve seen come and go in the city over the past thirty three years. The difference, for me, rests with a series of visible actions the Green Party has taken to improve residents’ lives.
What has the Green Party done for Brighton and Hove?
This isn’t an exhaustive list, but it covers a handful of the Green Party initiatives I’ve noticed and appreciated most since they came into power in my home town.
- Lots of new cycle paths and traffic calming measures, making the city much more pedestrian-friendly
- Eco-friendly LED lighting for the Royal Pavillion and elsewhere
- The 20mph city-wide speed limit, which will hopefully spread to our suburb soon
- Saying a quick and simple ‘yes’ via Twitter to my request about planting wildflowers in the verge in front of our house
- Planting swathes of wildflowers in parks and on central reservations throughout the city
- Letting me personally sponsor a dog poop bin to help make our city pleasanter to live in
- The Lookerer conservation project, where 1000 council help keep downland grass down so the wildflowers can come through
- The city’s remarkable bus service
- Their intention to reconsider Britain’s dodgy drug classification system
But aren’t Green Party policies a bit ‘out there’?
There’s been some talk about the Green Party’s non-environmental policies being a bit off-the-wall. Fair comment. Some probably are. But in times like this we need fresh thinking, different approaches, new ideas, creative ways of looking at the tough challenges the human race faces. Toeing the traditional political line doesn’t cut the mustard any more.
So… that’s why I’m voting Green in May. What about you? Are you happy to talk politics, comfortable making making your feelings clear to everyone and his dog?