The Power of the People

As we put this issue together, we were heading towards the 2024 General Election. And knowing, probably, that by the time you read this, the election may well be behind us and a new set of UK leaders will be in position. And although the country is divided, it is in times like this where we see the real power that the public has to effect change. Hopefully for the better.

Throughout this election process, I imagine we’ve all grown tired of endless of grand promises, and our temptation is to just turn off the TV, scoffing at the nonsense being spewed our way. But we have a great power as a community, and as a nation to effect change in a positive way.

Politics has always divided- particularly in a political system that allows one of only two parties to ultimately make the win- and with the onslaught of information being thrown at us (not all of which is true), it’s sometimes too hard to choose the right path. But I like to think that we are all working towards the same goal, to make this country better for the people- all people.

From Friday, 5 July this year, we will know the leader of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Someone who has promised to improve the lives of its citizens, and at the end of the day, that’s what we all want.

This General Election has become one of the most important turning points in this country, probably since Brexit. It holds immense significance as it shapes the future direction of the UK amidst pressing challenges affecting ordinary recovery post-pandemic and the rising cost of living to climate change, the election will determine policies directly impacting everyday lives. And here in Wales, decisions made in Westminster have a direct impact on the funding available to our own Welsh Government in Cardiff, and its policies on health, education, the economy, agriculture, and culture.

In this modern age we have the luxury of being able to obtain all the information we need at our fingertips. Politics, at times, appears boring, confusing and aggravating, but our vote is our voice and it has the potential to effect great change. It’s important that we take the time to listen, observe, to understand what we can do as a community to help make the right decisions.

It’s easy to get caught up on names. Conservative, Labour, Plaid Cymru, Liberal Democrat, Green Party, Reform UK. And it’s just as easy to get caught up on their headline promises. We must take the time to dig a little deeper, beyond the attention-grabbing headlines. And this, I think, it where the great divides appear, getting in the way of people understanding the truth. The most simple, and probably the only question you should be asking yourself is, what changes do you want to see for yourself and your community?

It is our privilege and our right to vote. To help mould our country into something better for all of us, all we can hope for is that people will take the time to pay attention, research and understand what lies behind each of the policies written in the manifestos.

The true definition of power is the ability to effect change. Whatever the result may be, after 4 July 2024, things will change. I hope I will see the power of what the people’s voice can do. Despite the divisions and complexities inherent in politics, our vote remains our most potent tool for change. Beyond the rhetoric lies the opportunity to make informed choices that reflect our aspirations for a better tomorrow.