Black Teenagers and the 2017 Elections — Vote for Greatness in Community and Nation

Your generation has a chance to make its mark 

By Thomas L Blair 25 April 2017, copyright

The Disenfranchised Generation can make a difference now. Black teenagers are poised to put their mark on Britain’s most consequential elections in recent history.

The fight is about what vision of Britain will dominate your future.  Parties opposing the government’s re-election Brexit strategy have set their eyes on you. They aim to corral 750,000 just-turned 18-year-old voters. Among them, Black novices have a chance to deliver their own top-of-the-list concerns.

So far, the June 8 elections have not attracted much excitement. There is no full-throated rebuke of the Conservative government’s anti-European and restrictive immigration policies. Policies that may set the country on an uncertain path at a critical moment.

Yet, one thing is clear for Black communities and voters. This 2017 election will be won or lost on domestic, not solely on foreign policy issues.

Here are some action-thoughts for Black novices as they head to the polling stations.

Housing, jobs, health and opportunities are still at crisis point, and may get worse. Race and faith attacks  are already high over Brexit.

Renewing neighbourhoods and hostile living conditions needs more than talk-talk. Better to light a candle than shout against the spectral darkness.

“Poor-me” moans will not banish two under covered issues — homelessness and human trafficking. And it turns out they go together. The Balm of Gilead won’t protect homeless youth at great risk of being trafficked for sex.

Furthermore, teenagers must vote to curb knife crimes. This scourge of Black families is hovering on the edge of self-genocide. On this issue, voting a politician in or out is more effective than your loved ones tears.

Black teenage voters need to seize this historic opportunity. They can vote for an outreach to immigrants, acceptance of different faiths, as well as ethnic diversity. They can challenge “British first” policies that are dangerous and sectarian.

In London, where Blacks voted overwhelmingly to Remain in the EU, they can target 45 Labour MPs, 26 Conservative MPs, and two  Liberal Democrat MPs. The key ideas and strategies are clear:

  • Organise political self-education
  • Draft Youth Priorities and write a Social Contract to influence political action
  • Participate in citizen consultations, human rights clubs and workplace activities
  • Create online platforms and radio programs to broadcast youth’s concerns

Moreover, there is one over-riding task for  new Black teenage voters: that is to support creative action to heal a politically fractured country. Greatness is in your hands.

Read more on the Brexit referendum and Black Britain. See recent articles in the Chronicleworld Weblog