As the Conservative party secures a majority and David Cameron heads back to Downing Street, three Christians tell us how they're feeling.
Becca – 'disappointed'
‘The heart of Christianity is deeply intertwined with left wing political values’
Honestly, I’m heartbreakingly disappointed with the outcome of the General Election. I’m gutted. Winded even. Working in Christian youthwork has shown me that the heartbeat of Christianity is deeply intertwined with left wing political values. Representing young people in the very adult-run world of church has inevitably made me a kind of ambassador for the underdog; seeing the world through the exclusive parameters set by those who are oblivious to the ways in which their power, influence, values and preferred ways of doing things, leave others behind.
Representing young people in the very adult-run world of church has inevitably made me a kind of ambassador for the underdog; seeing the world through the exclusive parameters set by those who (mostly not unkindly) are oblivious to the ways in which their power, influence, values and preferred ways of doing things, leave others behind.
The ‘survival of the fittest’ Conservative approach to running a country that leaves the individual with their own personal success or failure (even if the success is simply being born in the ‘right’ family and in the ‘right’ area) jars so much with the revolutionary person of Jesus who poured out his everything for those who didn’t deserve it. Of course his promise of redemption is available to the rich as well, but wealth and privilege makes it harder for them to respond to his costly call to live like him (Mark 10:17-27).
The past two years have shown me how quickly a person can fall into vulnerability. Having energetically worked for the ‘needy’ as a youth worker for a decade, I fell chronically ill with ME, making me suddenly unable to work and financially dependent in a way that I’d never imagined possible. I crossed over and became the ‘needy’ one.
I can only see a government that pulls out the rug of basic needs such as health, food, safety and shelter from those with less of a voice to push back, as bad news. Disappointing and detrimental to the vulnerable, but even more disappointing that the ‘haves’ have turned a blind eye to the ‘have nots’, keeping their privilege but losing an invaluable part of what it means to be human.
John – 'delighted'
‘This will be best for Britain’
I am pleased that the country has a government committed to work, aspiration and long-term stability. That said – I recognise that it is not going to be an easy five years. Iain Duncan Smith has already commented that a small majority means a government that has to 'keep it simple…keep it focused.' That is why I am actually pleased with a small majority! I think this will be best for Britain.
I would have preferred it if David Cameron had cast a vision in 2015 more similar to 2010. Five years ago, social justice was a key ambition. For me, these ideals correlated with the key Biblical principles of human dignity, the hope of transformation and the necessity to deal with core issues; however uncomfortable a process that might be. My hope is that today's victory will embolden the Prime Minister to return to this platform.
I also think that a Conservative government with the backdrop of a SNP landslide will generate more considered thought and debate on the future of our country. My hope is that this balance will lead to the creation of a federal, unified United Kingdom sat in a reformed European Union. Here's hoping our leaders lead.
Katie – 'disillusioned'
‘Your influence is more down to your postcode than your vote’
I'm passionate about politics and was looking forward to voting. Last election I lived in a marginal constituency and so felt my vote mattered and this election I spent a lot of time reading manifestos and campaign leaflets to try and make an informed decision.
However we recently moved to a constituency that has been held by the same party since 1885, with the exception of one year in the 1920s, and which surprisingly enough has re-elected that party for yet another term. This has left me feeling a bit disillusioned as despite the fact there was no campaign to speak of from the current (returning) MP, who was also embroiled in an expenses scandal not too long ago, they won with a comfortable margin.
I understand that this is democracy and I am not disputing the result; however it seems to me that your influence as an individual is more down to your postcode than your vote.
Living in a ‘safe seat’ it frustrates me that my vote will never make a difference and the fact that, despite an excellent effort to involve the community by the opposition, the current incumbent didn’t even bother to stick some leaflets through our door just makes it worse.
I will continue to vote in future elections as I believe it's important to exercise that right, but it’s very tempting not to bother and it would be interesting to see the turnout statistics from 'safe seats' vs 'marginal seats' as I suspect the number of people voting in ‘safe seats’ is only going to get lower.
How are you feeling the morning after the night before? Let us know in the comments below...
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