Hands up if you voted in the European election. I’m looking, I’m looking. You at the back – do you have your hand in the air or are you just scratching your head?
In a poll taken at the start of the month, six out of 10 Europeans said they were “not that interested” in the European Parliament elections.
The survey of nearly 9,000 people in 12 EU countries found only 35% would definitely vote, down on the 43% average turnout for the 2009 elections.
The greatest enthusiasm was registered in Belgium (53%), where voting is required by law so one wonders why 47% are ready to be punished rather than put a cross in a box.
France was the second keenest country to vote (44%) followed by the Netherlands (41%). The lowest was in Britain (27%) and Poland (20%).
Why aren’t we bothered? Do we think the channel of water between us and the rest of Europe means any decision taken elsewhere will never filter through?
But then we don’t just have ourselves to blame. Come general and local election time, we regularly have people knocking on our door asking us how we’re going to vote and if we’d like to vote for them.
Many push leaflets through our letterbox and I read them all. Particularly in the local elections, I sometimes end up voting for the person I believe is going to do the best job and not just their political leanings. If someone lives in my area – and has done for some time – I hope they are going to care about what happens to the place as much as I do.
I know that’s not possible when it comes to MEPs but I’d like to think they value my vote enough to at least hire/persuade someone to shove some correspondence through my door telling me what they plan to do, should they win.
The only thing I had through my door for this election was my polling card. I live directly opposite a polling station so had no excuse to know it wasn’t election day but, had I not, Thursday could have quite easily passed me by if I wasn’t someone who kept up with current affairs.
In the end, I made my decision based on the piece written by our very own political editor Paul Francis (thanks for that, mate).
I’m happy with my decision, and where I put my mark, but I do wonder if I might have voted differently if someone had just shown a bit of love and told me more about their dreams for the next few years.
As part of the build-up to the World Cup, the FA is holding a number of events all over the country to get more people involved in the big game.
And some parents will be showing their children (or maybe not) how it’s done, right here in Medway.
On Saturday, June 7, at The Howard School in Rainham, two teams of mums, whose youngsters play for Medway United, will take each other on in a match where Medway East will play Medway West.
The men, too, will be fielding their own teams in a Dads v Dads match.
It’s all to promote the Medway Cup 2014, a mini soccer tournament taking place on July 6 at Beechings Cross, Gillingham, and is fully backed by Gillingham FC.
It will be raising money for Take Heart Mercy Mission. You can find out more at www.facebook/medwaycup2014
The parents’ matches on June 7 get under way from 10.30am. There’s plenty of food and drink too, so do your best to pop along.