2015 has been the year of interest in politics and current affairs. From the Goodluck Jonathan vs. Buhari showdown Nigerian elections, to the Labour vs. Conservative battle just last week in the UK. It seems all conversations lately have centred around the economy, social mobility and maintaining a fair justice system, among other manifesto headlines. It might stun some of you, in light of the fact I'm often praised for my intellect in the comments below, but I grew up overstating my loathing for politics and current affairs. Growing up in Nigeria, politics seemed like a hobby for overworked business men, hacked up on liquor with tobacco'd puff-clouds swarming above their heads as they discussed issues they would never take active steps to rectify, or people they'd never vocalise such disdain towards if met face-to-face. I found their droning about problems mind-numbing, and thought of nothing worse than submerging myself in that clear blame culture.
Coat : River Island | Shirt : TK Maxx | Dress : H&M
However, something happened in University. Not just the broadening of mindsets that inevitably occurred when you chucked a loadful of individuals of different backgrounds but similar ages together, but...FEES! Tuition fees. Conservatives proposed increasing fees to mirror their foreign competitors, while their political counterparts argued otherwise. Students would riot while said politicians remained bigots, and the results saw the lower classes effectively pushed out of higher education aspirations in the last 5 years. That experience opened my eyes to social injustice, pressure groups, effect of lobbying for change, and most importantly, honouring my civic duty and voting in line with my views on particular issues.
Parish, City, State: Hogarth & Government (Hogarth House)
There's a common misconception that politics is for men, or reserved for the ugly, but that's not true. Politics is just a term, as every other profession or interest has its jargon, so does leadership of a nation and its governing policy. Your interests are affected by politics in one way or another, whether it be fashion & makeup (the price of products is affected by the markup/down of VAT decided by the ruling party), travel (from airport tax duty charges to free movement laws, politics has a lot of say over our right to liberty), or sports (financing leisure initiatives nationwide)...all that is at the whim and control of the governing political party we vote in. That penny-dropping eureka moment is when it struck me that I was inadvertently interested in politics for YEARS, as have all of you. So it irked me greatly when on election day, people were proclaiming their disinterest in politics based on an ill-conceived notion that it did not affect them or their daily lives, because as illustrated above, it clearly does.
Choker : Gift from South Korea c/o LolliHearts | Watch : Guess | Loafers : NewLook
I have found myself engaging in more political debates lately, and not just because I sound more intellectually enlightened substituting Cameron Diaz's affairs for that of David Cameron in conversation, but because I can see the bigger picture now. Politics isn't a topic set aside for adults alone either, or a subject matter only to be discussed by the nouveaux-riche, but one that's all encompassing in its reach. Tall, short, black, white, rich, poor. We are all fortunate enough to live in a society that affords us the liberty to debate, deliberate and eventually decide who governs us. That's not a right to be taken lightly, and putting my personal political policies aside, I am proud of the outcome of the elections mentioned above. It demonstrates the masses' engagement with their civic rights by voting in who they thought would uphold those rights for another term.
Riddle me this - "More people vote in 'American Idol' than in any US election" Rush Limbaugh