Richard Wright

author of strange, dark fictions

Journal

Because You’re Dumb

May 5, 2016 by Richard Wright in Journal, Life

WEP-banner-68nplf705o7opg5l5xfrul57kc8dx6m8v6xrd7o89veBecause you’re dumb, that’s why.

Oh, right.

Voting. I’m talking about voting.

It’s fashionable in the UK at the moment to be horrified by the early stages of the US presidential election, mostly because Donald Trump. And there is an extent to which that is absolutely appropriate. It’s the most visible political contest in the world, and it’s dominated by an asshat. An asshat that people are intent on voting for.

America, sit in the corner. You are dumb now.

I can say that with certainty, because I live in a country which isn’t du…

Oh, wait.


Today in the UK there are a host of different elections happening, for London mayor, for regional governments, and more. As I’m in Scotland, much of my attention is on the Scottish government race, because that’s what my own vote counts for.

I have looked at all of the major political parties, and found myself uninspired. None of them fully represent me across all of the issues they address. Because of that, I’m going niche.

Earlier this year I joined The Women’s Equality Party.

I felt I had to, because you’re dumb.

The fact that the tax gains from wage equality alone would all but wipe out this country’s deficit overnight – and that instead of concentrating on that the government finds increasingly draconian ways to increase taxes, cut benefits, and degrade public services – is dumb. The fact that my daughter has to constantly fight the media’s idea that people like her are only ever the support and never the main act is dumb. The fact that she’s in one of Scotland’s best schools and still finds there are activities and ideas she’s not encouraged to embrace because she’s a girl is dumb. That she will probably be paid less than other people in her class for doing the same thing to the same standard is dumb. The fact that I was discriminated against as a father with less opportunity to be part of my kid’s earliest days because I’m a man is dumb. The fact that every girl and women I know is significantly less safe than me, all of the time, is just dumb.

Every party in the UK has had gender equality at the ‘top of the agenda’ for as long as I’ve been voting, but it isn’t fixed yet.

Dumb.

And you’re dumb for allowing it.

The Women’s Equality Party (which by definition is also the Men’s Equality Party, because that is what the word means) might be a route to progressing these things. For two decades we’ve been patting ourselves on the back for all of the progress we’ve made in the UK on the issue, but that isn’t good enough. We can pat ourselves on the back when this issue doesn’t exist any more.

There are a lot of things wrong with this country. They all need to be fixed. It will be a lot easier to do if everybody has an equal opportunity to contribute. Sorting out the gender imbalance will be a massive step forward, and that’s why I’m voting for them.

It’s a political party that doesn’t really want to govern, but rather hopes to have a big enough voice in the right place to make fast and meaningful changes that almost everybody actually agrees with but nobody does. I personally hope they will be redundant in a decade. By voting them in and supporting their work, in politics and in life, I’m also voting to get them out as soon as possible.

You’ve got two votes in the UK. Where you have a chance to do so, consider giving the second one to the Women’s Equality Party. If you’re a floating voter in particular, who like me isn’t convinced by any of the major parties, get yourself to the polls and use your votes for this one issue. It’s not going to make anything any worse, is it?

If we can make this country a little less dumb, we can all feel much better about judging everybody else. We like judging everybody else, you and I. It’s our best thing, and there’s no harm in admitting it. Just imagine the heights of frothing superiority we can achieve if we can just get this one thing done over the next few years.

You’re welcome.

For a fuller breakdown of what WEP is all about, you can go here. The party leader (and London mayoral candidate) Sophie Walker also has a far more convincing piece that sums things up here.

But whether you want to support WEP or not, do make sure you go and vote. Otherwise you’re especially dumb. Magnificently chew-your-own-shoes do-not-resucitate dumb. If you fail to vote you will lose all entitlement to like or share those enraging memes about the politics on the Facebook.

I know you like those best of all.

Vote, or the tasty memes of hate get it.

That will be all.

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2 Comments

  1. AnonymousMay 5, 2016 at 7:37 am

    I’m going to vote today with absolutely no idea yet where to place my X. You’ve nudged me somewhere, cheers.

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