The politics of caring…

This morning I went to the polling station to vote in what could possibly be the most pointless election ever. Electing MEPs to a parliament that we may not even be a part of soon. To be honest I am not even sure if we ever needed MEPs – but that’s a whole different discussion.

Yesterday I spent the day at the Midland Hotel in Morecambe at an event called Love Society where people from across our region were looking at ways to improve our community and create a more loving, kind and compassionate society.

There were all sorts of people there. Doctors, teachers, care workers, people from charities, local councillors, sociologists, holistic practitioners and people like me who care.

We listened to two amazing women. Bev Skeggs, a sociologist and Hilary Cottam, a social entrepreneur whose work focuses on solutions to social challenges such as ageing, loneliness, chronic disease and inequality. It became obvious how important connection and community are in these situations.

There was heartfelt and moving discussion in the room, and it felt good to be spending time with so many people wanting to help and improve things. Caring.

However, during the break-out discussions I became quite uncomfortable with how conversations became a political blame-game. Voices were raised and there was some metaphorical banging on tables. I know that every person in the room was passionate about change and desperate to make a difference but there was so much anger.

I have never been much of a political animal. I always see good and bad on both sides. I do not believe that any one political party is perfect. Recently here in the UK we have seen our parliament implode and for me…well I believe that politics is broken. Much like our benefits system and the NHS. Whether we were for Brexit or against, the one thing we can all agree on is that the last 3 years have been a total shambles. Nobody has come out of it well. And we are not out of the woods yet.

I have written before about how much I hate the spitefulness and disrespect in parliament. The British system of government has been adopted all over the world. Our traditions were respected and even revered. But that was then, and this is now. It is time for change.

Big decisions need to be taken to fix our broken society. And our politicians should be leading us, showing us the way, demonstrating the correct way to behave. They should be working together towards common goals, with a vision of a loving and respectful community. Not constantly slagging one another off and putting people down. Setting an example for everyone, here in Britain and across the world.

I truly believe that some things transcend party politics. Sometimes the ONLY solution is love. Love of each other, of truth and honesty, of respect for every human being. That is how we change things. I believe it is incredibly simple. Sadly, I cannot think of one politician from any party that inspires, encourages and could lead us selflessly and honestly towards a better future. I am fearful.

But sometimes from great adversity comes great courage. Somewhere there must be someone who can make a difference. Who sees that respect, compassion, love and caring is necessary to heal and repair. We need a hero. In the meantime, let’s all try to be local heroes. To work in our communities to bring change and improve our own little corner of the world. Start a ripple and send it in the direction of Westminster. In the name of love, not a political party.

The harvesting of our discussion yesterday