Four months ago thousands flocked to the streets of London in protests and riots during the G8 summit held in the nation’s capital. Sadly, the same was not true after news of MP’s expenses claims broke out. Why is it that the streets outside the houses of parliament weren’t taken by mobs of angry people demanding an explanation? Why didn’t thousands of students get together to protest outside the gates of 10 Downing street? Would it be that young britons have more appetite for global causes than local ones? In my five years living in the UK, I came to believe that for most of the nation’s youth no cause is too small. As long as it’s global. Save the rain forests! Stop global warming! That’s what they’re saying.
Protect local jobs in Lancashire! Preserve Cornwall’s beaches! Seem as unlikely as the propstects of Superman snorting kryptonite. The island’s youth is eager to change the world and it forgets all about their own backyard. Have you ever stopped to think and ask yourselves how many of our university students actually bothered to get up and vote in 2005. Many people say that voting doesn’t matter because nothing ever changes. Democracy is no fast food restaurant and it’s certainly no take away at 2 in the morning, where you order a kebab knowing all too well that it’s a bad idea and that it’ll prove regretable in the morning. Democracy takes time and pondering. It took Brazil decades of democratic process to finally elect a left wing government, not that is was a very good choice, but it was a democratic one. America endured a long wait before it voted in it’s first black president after 232 years of independence. Democracy is a bottom to top thing, which means we can’t change the world if we don’t make those essential changes locally first. Perhaps the motto should be changed. Perhaps we should think locally, act locally to then, change globally.