Apparently I am an ‘influencer.’ When I write about sex toys, some of you buy them. When I recommend books or articles, you click the links and read and share. You support me on Patreon to help me make audio porn. You incredible, beautiful, wonderful people: you sometimes take my advice. So if influence is currency, I’d like to spend it today. All of it. On one thing: persuading you to vote.
If you are eligible to vote in the UK elections tomorrow, please use your vote.
It’s the hope that’ll kill me, I swear.
We were told that this year the election was all sewn up. The Tories, they said, would win by a landslide. Then polls started telling us Labour were gaining momentum, and bookies changed odds and commentators scrabbled and people like me started to foolishly nurture a tiny spark of hope.
Don’t get me wrong, a Tory win is still the most likely outcome. It is not just likely, in fact: it is almost guaranteed. Five more years of Tory rule. Five more years of Theresa May, who despises ‘left-wing, activist human rights lawyers’ (actual quote), who as Home Secretary sneered at police who begged for more resources, and allowed the state-sanctioned abuse of women at Yarl’s Wood. Who as Prime Minister… oh fuck it. Do you know what? It doesn’t matter. If you’re planning on voting Tory you’ll already be down in the comment section trying to patronise me with arguments I’ve heard before, or explaining how disappointed you are.
But if you want the Tories out, read on. We need you. I need you.
Another five years of Conservative government fills me with a nauseous dread.
A Tory win is an almost certainty.
But it’s the ‘almost’ here that matters, and it’s the ‘almost’ that’s tearing me to bits. The ‘almost’ is what will weigh on your mind if you don’t vote, then wake up on Friday morning to see May giving a victory speech on the steps of Number 10. If you despaired the morning after Brexit, and despaired about Trump, and you – like me – feel weak and small and powerless and miserable at the apparent wave of right-wing nationalism that is thumping through politics…
This website will give you info on the best person to vote for in your constituency to keep the Tories out.
This website will help you find your polling station if you’ve lost your card (you don’t need your card to vote).
Vote. If you can. Please. If you can’t bring yourself to be excited about it, I don’t blame you. But if I can spend the few influence coins I might have to persuade just one of you to vote tomorrow, I’ll be excited and delighted on your behalf.
We – you and I and the millions who despair at five more years of this – will have tried.
We will probably fail. But we have to try. Even if all our trying does is make us feel less shit the morning after. Even if we’re doing it with a sense of resignation and dread.
Even if – as is very very likely – we will lose.
That’s why I’m writing a post today about voting. Not a sexy topic, by any stretch of the imagination. And it’s not something I’ve ever overtly done before: put a plea up to ask you to turn out and vote. Like voting itself, I’m not doing this because I’m convinced it will guarantee victory: I’m doing it because I couldn’t handle the guilt if I didn’t say fucking something. If I didn’t at least try.
And because, honestly, although it is a very slim chance there absolutely is a chance that the Tories might lose this election. There is. If the outcome of this election were as certain as everyone told us it was, I wouldn’t have bothered writing this today. But with a high enough turnout, and enough people who give a shit, we could genuinely swing this. And even if we don’t? Hey, at least we tried. We did a profoundly good and useful thing. We didn’t just share a fun meme or bitch about Theresa May on Facebook – we used the teeny tiny sliver of actual political power we have, and combined it with millions of others.We made it clear that whatever shit the Tories do in the next five years it is not in our name.
They might get what they want, but not without a decent fucking fight.
Because by trying – by voting – we can diminish their majority. Erode their confidence. Put them on shaky ground. Make every single cut to the NHS, every threat to rip up human rights law, every tax break for the obscenely wealthy… we can make all of those things just that little bit harder for them to get away with.
The Tories think they’ll be handed an election. They think it’s theirs by right.
By voting, you can at least make the bastards fucking work for it.