Dear UK: You gifted the world human rights, please vote to protect them

Dear UK,

Theresa May today promised to rip human rights into shreds in the name of fighting terrorism – the very terrorism for which she’s at least partially responsible through her gutting of the police service, support of the illegal invasion of Iraq leading to the creation of ISIS, and her continued support of and weapon sales to Saudi Arabia, the number one promoter and financier of Jihadi terrorism.

The right to due process, a right that Theresa may wants to take away from you, is a right that is enshrined in the Magna Carta signed in 1215. For eight hundred years, many monarchs, wars, and political upheavals later, the right of due process remain one of your greatest gifts to human civilization.

It’ll be a tragedy to see those human rights die in their birthplace. But that’s precisely what will happen if, through omission or commission, the Conservatives are re-elected on Thursday.

But you have one final chance to protect those rights and freedoms.

Jeremy Corbyn warned us that gutting the police service would make it hard to prevent terror attacks. He also warned us that the invasion of Iraq would lead to a spiral of misery and conflict leading to terrorism. He warned us about the consequences of aiding and abetting repressive regimes such as Saudi Arabia.

Even if one cynically dismisses Corbyn for being an idealist for wanting to achieve world peace, end poverty and save the planet, it’s worth bearing in mind that the man has risked his own freedom to protect the freedoms of others, such as the time when he was arrested for protesting against apartheid in South Africa.

On Thursday, you get to choose between man who has spent his entire adult life fighting for our fundamental freedoms, and a woman who feels that human rights are obstacles that need to be bulldozed away in posthaste to clear the glorious path to strength and stability.

I hope you chose freedom over fear.

Dear young people of Britain: Do the unexpected

So there we have it, we are heading into an election or, as Theresa May calls it, a dangerous and unnecessary exercise. Because as we all know, United Kingdom is one of the world’s greatest democracies and the greatest threat to that democracy is that we get to vote. But vote we will.

So that means if you live in a retirement home, prepare to be targeted. Because these days it’s all about targeting the vote. All the major parties have well publicized plans to target the ethnic vote, the women’s vote, the blue-collar vote, the corporate vote. If there were more than five paraplegic vegetarian Latin speakers in Orkney, they would be a target.

Everyone is targeted, except for one group, the youth vote.

There are more than three million young eligible voters in this country and as far as any of the political parties are concerned, you might as well all be dead.

It is the conventional wisdom of all political parties that young people will not vote. And the parties, they like it that way. It’s why your tuition keeps going up.

So please, if you’re between the age of 18 and 25 and you want to scare the hell out of the people that run this country, this time around do the unexpected. Take 20 minutes out of your day and do what young people all around the world are dying to do.


[With apologies to Rick Mercer

Photo Credit: Andrew Moss]