You expect me to vote?

I wanted to vote in the SU elections. I really did. I thought, “Right, let’s contribute to the democratic process.” Besides, all the promos and reminders told me it would only take a few minutes.

So I went to the SU website, clicked my way through to the voting page and discovered there were 12 or even maybe 16 candidates for the post of First Year Councillor alone. Undeterred, I clicked on the first name and was met with about two screens worth of text. Now I’m a Literature student, but even I didn’t have the time and patience to read through all that.
One of my friends said her corridor had decided to vote for the candidate with the funniest name, so if there’s anyone called Ben Dover or Les Bien reading who fancies a bit of power, go for it – you’ve got a good shot. Even the Union reps that came round our kitchen reminding us to vote said a lot of people just vote for who they think is best looking.

I, however, am one of those people who likes to know everything before they vote and make an educated choice. Not having the impetus to read everything, I decided not to vote. Now whose fault is it that I didn’t vote? Mine? Yes, largely. I’m quite lazy. But I intended to vote, and some of the fault lies with the SU.

I’m not saying they should limit the number of candidates – having the authorities decide who you can vote for is undemocratic. But when you got to the election section you were met with a list of names. Like Vienna, names mean nothing to me. At least not on their own.
How hard would it have been, how long would it have taken to get somebody to write a summary – as little as a sentence – outlining the main points of their policies, or what they stand for? Hell, I would’ve done it (though not for free!). Then, if you were intrigued, you could click on the name and read their full statement; or if you’re the lazy sort, just vote based on the synopsis. Get it sorted next time, yeah?


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