Why is the level of political participation in Britain important?

Essay by nirvanarocksmysocksCollege, UndergraduateA-, November 2006

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Political participation at many levels in Britain is very important, the most important being voting in elections, because politics affects almost everything in our lives. As the Government become sovereignty for up to the next five years, and therefore make important decisions on behalf of the state, it is essential for every person eligible to vote within the state, to have a say in who are going to do the most significant jobs in the country. They are the people who make decisions about education, healthcare, and even the environment, so it is important that people participate in choosing the best representatives possible.

Britain is lucky enough to have a stable democracy, in which every adult is equal and allowed a vote, but this democracy relies on people using their votes. It is essential for every single person to vote in order for Britain's multicultural state to be fairly represented in Government.

Obviously this is not possible, but the more people that vote, the more the Government will reflect the mixture of people it governs, and it is then likely there won't be as much prejudice in its policies and its treatment of society.

Political participation in other instances is also important, for example in referendums. If the Government cannot make a decision on a particular issue, and goes to the extent of having a referendum, then it is likely that it is a very subject that affects everyone's lives in different ways. It is important to vote in great numbers because it demonstrates that a large number of people share the same opinion, and so a popular decision can be made that will benefit the majority, which should be the aim of any Government. Referendums are also an opportunity to educate the public about a particular issue, which is also important, because politics affects everyone and making sure that the public know what the government is doing and understand the issues affecting their country are essential for democracy. This can only be achieved by participation.

Voting figures in Britain are now so low, that the political participation is even more important, because participation encourages participation. There is evidence that non-voters remain non-voters, that voting is not passed down through generations, and that voting becomes habit. If people start participating in politics now, the more people will participate in future generations.