FRIDAY, NOV. 16: “I ain’t voting.” “All de politicians are the same.”

Both statements made frequently lately. At first listen, I wonder why anyone would even have this rationale? Then I remember that I, too, had this attitude at one point. I think it may have been around 1994 when the ‘Stubbs bill’ was being debated .

For many of us in the black community that was a major no-no. When some in the PLP sided with the UBP, it left many of us totally vexed.

So we had the mindset “why vote? “I ain’t voting” “All de politicians are the same.” It caused the PLP a bit of support for a few years.

 I have voted in every election since 1998. I often ask myself, had we remained vexed and had not voted in 1998, where would we be now? Look around the island and let us say the UBP had remained in power.

• No Perimeter Lane;

• No Harbourview Village;

• No Loughlands;

• No One Man One Vote;

• No FutureCare for our parents;

• No Heritage Wharf;

• No new Berkeley;

• No Sylvia Richardson Seniors Home;

• No Dr Cann Seniors Housing

• No fast ferries;

• No PRC holders;

• No Lamb Foggo Clinic;

• No relief from death tax;

• No affordable DayCare allowance.

Many don’t fully understand politics, even some ‘wannabe’ politicians. The back and forth bickering between the UBP/ OBA/BDA versus the PLP. Many don’t give a flying flip about actions in the Senate or the House. Most don’t keep up with the weekly ‘Igrance.’ So for many, politics is an alien language spoken by aliens.

What most are concerned about is having an equal opportunity in our own island.

We are concerned about guest workers having opportunities we don’t have. We are worried about that street light.

 We are worried about the youths destroying each other. We are worried about our landlords raising the rent, because they prefer guest workers as tenants. We worry about affordable medication for our parents.

Family, my journey on this political road has opened my eyes to both the voters’ concerns and the nuts and bolts of internal and external politics. It is no bed of roses. Haterade is consumed by the gallon.

Encouraged

Yet whenever someone stops me and says, “hey, I read your column, and now I better understand what is going on,” it encourages me to continue.

To my readers, I thank you and I love you. I will continue to be the ‘Pond Dog’ translating political gibberish into understandable ‘Bermy talk.’

I strongly encourage anyone considering not voting to look around this island and ask yourselves; if we did not put aside our differences, unite as a family and vote 14 years ago, where would we be today?

Do yourselves a favour — make sure you are registered properly. Stand with your family who have stood with you. We are here, and we will continue to defend Bermudians.

Not voting is unacceptable in 2012. It only benefits the other guys. Is that really what you want?

Vent if you must, but vote early and vote family.