Why I Decided to Join UKIP, the Party of Common Sense
As a secondary school student, I don’t really know many people who are interested in politics. Because of this, all I could rely on is the curriculum the government provide for schools to teach me about politics. That lead to thinking a lot of things that I now know to be not true.
A few months before the 2015 General Election, I was watching the news with my dad and I saw all of the UKIP MEPs waving their GB flags and turning their backs while they played their beloved anthem. I was shocked! Confused, I asked my dad why they were turning their backs when the EU was trying to help us and was a good thing. He looked at me and said, “They aren’t trying to help us; they’re trying to take every bit of power from us they can!” That was the moment that changed everything for me. I had always pictured the EU as a group of politicians working together for the good of everyone! I did some research on the internet and discovered all of the hard-fought referendums that were ignored, all of the narcissistic unelected bureaucrats that were running the EU and how much damage it had done to Greece and the rest of the failing Eurozone and that angered me.
I started watching the news every night and looking at who the main parties were and what they supported. I read through all of their manifestos, watched all of the TV debates and spoke to everyone I knew about what they thought. From all of this, one thing became very clear; the traditional political establishment – the posh toff Tories, the Britain-hating Labour looneys and the lying Lib Dems – all had no idea what life was like for ordinary people like my family, my friends and everyone else in the country. I then saw the greens, who said they were different and offering an alternative. So I looked at their alternative and found that it was quite literally an even crazier version of Labour, so that was out of the window. That left UKIP, the ‘racists’ (or so I heard). Farage seemed to know exactly what life was like for the ordinary person. He said what he thought, whether the establishment liked it or not. He knew exactly what the EU was like – after all, he’d had 16 years’ experience there, he wanted to get immigration down to a sensible level (or at the very least control a number of people coming in) and truly wanted the best for Britain. I knew very quickly that he was the man for me. From that moment I persuaded my parents and grandparents (who were undecided between Tories and UKIP) to vote UKIP and did all I could on social media to promote UKIP and its policies.
Come the General Election, I stayed up late and got up early (as now happens once every May for me) to see the results. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. UKIP got almost 13% of the vote, 4 million votes and only 1 seat to show for it. I didn’t understand how it could work out so badly for UKIP. I did some research (that phrase is cropping up a lot) and discovered that we use a system called First Past the Post which was unfair towards small parties and favoured established parties. I signed up to the Electoral Reform Society and Unlock Democracy who both aim to change this to a fairer system of proportional representation. I started campaigning a lot for this and it became another thing I so passionately believed in.
Over a year later we had that little event, what was it? Oh yeah, the EU referendum. As I’ve already explained, I strongly wanted to leave the EU because I think it is democratical, economically and culturally destructive. For this reason, I followed every Eurosceptic I could find on Twitter, signed up to Grassroots Out, Leave.EU, Vote Leave and every other Brexit-backing campaign. I delivered around 1,000 leaflets, attended a Brexit rally and persuaded everyone I knew that Brexit was the way forward (and it worked in most cases!).
Not long after this, an event that is arguably one of the worst things that have ever happened to UKIP, Farage’s resignation. While I was clearly upset he had resigned, I thought it was the best thing for UKIP. He has clearly attracted millions of voters to the great party UKIP is, but he has also sadly been given the image of a ‘racist’ by the establishment. As good a leader as he was, if UKIP wanted to move forward, it needed a fresh face and I think UKIP’s great flagbearer knew it. I then realised that meant we are going to have a leadership election and the face of our party would be the most important thing for new voters. I wanted to have my say and to support the party through its greatest years to come. So I signed up online for only £2 (I’m under 22) and that’s where we are now.
I am now campaigning to get more people to follow in my footsteps and join up to our great movement. And I have one message for everyone that tells us there is no point in us now we have left the EU and that is that they haven’t seen the back of us yet. We will be watching your every move because while one of our key policies is completed, our common-sense, straight talking ideology is here to stay and there’s nothing you can do about it.