THE toxic world of politics is in full swing with the Local Elections looming large.
Having reported on many elections during my 40-year career, things have always got a little heated but things appear to have been going from bad to worse in recent years.
I’ve lost count of the number of political scandals which have been making the press in recent weeks, many of them from unnamed leaked sources within political parties, or their associates.
I’m not going to mention any particular incident as they have all been well documented elsewhere- all I will say is it hasn’t been a very positive image for our town.
Meanwhile, while some people may be wondering why we haven’t reported on all the incidents, my policy has been and always will be, not to report on something unless I can verify the source.
Sadly some of my media colleagues in the national press don’t take the same high moral ground – and then of course social media is a whole new ball game that has become the new political battleground in recent years.
Personally, I am politically independent and will always work and support those I believe are attempting to do their best in the local community.
Having served as an independent parish Cllr at Appleton, I have first-hand experience of this, although after three years at the coal face I have decided not to stand again, with more pressing issues in my business and family life.
I wouldn’t dream of trying to influence any of our readers on who they should vote for – although yet again most of the national media don’t hold back on carrying the flag for a mainstream party.
My main fear this time around, while we are still in the midst of a pandemic, apathy will win the day and most people won’t bother to vote.
As it is, it is rare to get more than 50 percent turnout in a local election, unless it is in tandem with a General Election.
I believe in democracy and it is important that people turn out to vote for those they believe best suited to represent our community.
To those seeking election in the local elections, if successful, please try and avoid getting involved in toxic politics dishing the dirt on your colleagues or bad-mouthing the opposition.
Please just focus on representing your community and showing us what you can do while holding those in power to account in a positive and constructive way and if you do have an issue to raise put it to us in confidence.