First off, I never saw the results coming. I thought it might be bad, but certainly not that bad. I am not going to comment as to why I think it happened, I am sure everyone has talked it to death. What I will say, is that politically it hurts me deeply to see people I care about and had grown to know; lose their seats. Even those in “opposition” would not (and did not) expect this result, and even the harshest of critics would be hard pushed to be glad at many a good hard working councillor losing their seats.
Even though I was more than happy to help my party this election, I clearly found things difficult to deal with when it came to what I believed and who I am as a person. It has already been gone over more than once, so I shall save you all going over it again.
Everyone knows I am friends with pretty much anyone, and you all know I am happy to talk to most people. And maybe this has been my downfall, I certainly get that impression. I can understand it, certainly see people’s points. But I cannot see how (or why for that matter) I cannot be me AND do what I wish politically... is that not the point of freedom of speech? Is that not the point of being able to choose for myself my own path in life ~ politically and otherwise?
Are we that shallow and petty that we are only willing to be friends with those like us? Is that what all politicians do? If you do not have the same view as me, fine; I accept that. If I do not have the same view as you, please accept that. And there is no reason why we cannot talk about our beliefs politically or otherwise, we can even agree to disagree; it does not make us any less important than anyone else.
I am of course talking in a general sense, nothing is aimed at anyone. But I have to admit I have done that in the past, even I am not infallible; even I can get it wrong sometimes! I would like to apologise wholeheartedly to those I may have offended by things I may have said in the past, with everything that was going on; I allowed myself to act before thinking things through. I allowed “it” to get to and tear me in different directions, it certainly was not me; nor will it ever be me.
I guess what I am trying to say is, why can I not be me and believe what I do politically, why does it all have to be the same? I do believe in many of the core basic values and beliefs that many Liberals believe in, the fact that others believe in being free, open and fair works for me. Life should be about wanting the best for our fellow human beings, not about making people all the same; not everyone is the same... is it wrong to want liberty, equality and to believe in community? Is it wrong to want to be free from poverty? Or to make people aware of the facts so they can be free?
And when it comes to following those core principals, I believe that Liberals fit what I believe in. And similarly I can only expect the same from others, and hope that my follow Liberals will believe in the same. I would like to think all Liberals follow those beliefs, I hope they would all want the same; feel the same and treat others in the same way. I know there will be people that say “Liberals (especially in Northampton) do not believe that.” I cannot (and will not) answer for any others, they will be able to answer for themselves. But I am not like others, I am not someone who will say something that is not true ~ maybe I say things too quickly without thinking, but I hope I do think more before I speak ~ I take pride in the fact I am that genuine. That I have no hidden agenda or ulterior motive.
I know many Liberals that lost their seats cared a great deal about the town and those they represented, and I also know many will not believe that. Seeing things politically from all sides, and being on the outside of it all; it certainly does seem a case of you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t... maybe the old saying is true, you can please some of the people some of the time; but not all of the people all of the time?
So what now?
Well, for the Liberals; I do not know. I imagine they are trying to see what went wrong and where they go from here, I imagine it will be the same with the other “independents” and those smaller partiers in Northampton.
Good luck to the Labour party who now have a huge task ahead of them, trying to be an opposition to a blue “stronghold” when the biggest gob (and I say that with affection) is gone; I hope they are up to the task.
Good luck also to the Tories, who need to be aware that they will have a million and one Liberals watching their every move with a keen eye... I hope for my town’s sake that they are successful, I shall be watching you too!
For me? I miss my party first off, but only I can take the blame for that mess. I honestly do not know where my politics lie, I am not sure I ever will to be honest. I guess that is the trouble with having political friends, regardless of if they mean to or not; they (whichever party they belong to ~ or were in) cannot help but be swayed by their own beliefs. A Liberal friend I miss terribly often said, “If you can’t stand the heat in politics...” and she is right. But this is not something I want to give up, I want to help; want to be part of helping things to change...
But maybe, until I can find my own path I need to take a backseat. I have a room I need to clean, more ironing I need to tackle, papers I need to read and sort out; not to mention writing assignments I have to attend to... gosh life does seem to creep up on you doesn’t it?
In closing, I would like to wish ALL those Liberals I met along the way. All of you (regardless of if you know/believe it or not) have had an affect on my life, I count myself lucky to have known all of you... yes even Mr. Woods!
Thank you for reading, and this is Nicky STILL a Liberal Democrat; signing off and saying see you on the backbenches.