Is political campaigning just for elections?

Posted on 22 November 2016 by Josh Kaile
in the News and views blog

It’s been an interesting/exciting/fascinating/depressing *delete as appropriate* time in politics over the last few months.

We usually wait years for seismic moments in democratic history, and like the proverbial buses, we’ve now had several in short succession.

First bus up was the unexpected result at the 2015 General Election, followed by the political earthquake caused by the UK’s shock decision to leave the European Union, and now the US Presidential Election.

An uncertain future

All three have had huge impacts already, not only in the immediate results they brought with them, but in their impact on other countries and financial markets around the world, not to mention the hysteria they have caused in our media and social media.

We are all wondering what this all means and what will come next. Naturally we tend to think about issues that are close to our own hearts. I know I think ‘what does this all mean for animal welfare’, and I’m sure I’m not the only one. What will this mean for millions of farm animals in the UK and those we import with their standards of welfare? Will these changes improve their lives or make them worse?

Thinking about all three events, I have been struck by the immediate reactions they have caused in the public. Not just shock and despair from some, but immediate outrage and protests on the streets. Populations understandably frustrated that they felt their voice was not heard and their side did not ‘win’. 

You can make a difference

Yes, winning elections/referendums is vitally import. But there are many ways in which we can all affect change other than at the ballot box. That’s why there are so many campaigning organisations in both the UK and the US, not to mention global organisations like World Animal Protection. Every day there are thousands of people dedicating to seeing positive change for the causes they believe in. And what they all have in common, regardless of their cause, is that they need you.

They need the drive, the determination and the passion that we often see from people at elections, but throughout the year and throughout the term of a Government. Because Governments can only really govern when they have the mandate and the support of the public. It’s why you often hear of U-turns and policy reversals, because a Government can realise that their proposed plans are unpopular and do not have widespread support.

So, even if your party/beliefs/arguments did not ‘win’ a recent election or referendum, it’s not game over. It’s time for us all to get back to our feet and work with more passion and more determination than ever to progress the causes we believe in. 

I for one, and all of us at World Animal Protection will be doing everything we can here, in the US and all around the world to ensure we end the needless suffering of animals. From billions of chickens suffering short, miserable lives before being slaughtered for their meat, to marine life caught in ghost fishing gear and wild animals exploited in the name of ‘entertainment’. 

We won’t stop until we influence decision makers to change animals’ lives for the better. If you would like to join us in delivering this, sign-up here. We will keep you updated as to what this could all mean for animals across the world and when we may need your support.


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