On numerous occasions I have heard or read the words of Politicians pointing out that they are not willing to respond to a given call for action or change because those calling for it are merely a small and vocal minority whose views do not coincide with the rest of society. Whilst I don’t recall these words being used in February 2003, the march of 1-2 Million people against the impending war with Iraq may well have been ignored on that basis. Politicians may not treat these people as irrelevant but they make it clear that these voices must not be confused with representative groups of people who really do carry widespread views. Although a much smaller number of people, figures for those watching the Premiership football matches each week are around 650,000. Clearly it would be a mistake if the small minority of people watching Premier league football, or even the 5M of people who play football every week were allowed to set the rules and regulations which impact all of our lives. After all we all know that Politicians represent a majority of Society and so they are honour bound to expose any disproportionate influence from amongst society as a whole. The only problem with this line of thinking is that these Politicians are members of clubs that represent 0.9% of society or 600,000 and these clubs include 1000’s of people who are actually silent members, possibly wanting to do no more than work locally for a candidate and in time an MP or Councillor. It is these parties that determine the manifestos prior to the election and help ‘refine’ policies once the party is in power.
Next time a Politician refers to a small and vocal minority whose views cannot be allowed to influence the way in which we do things in the UK, I wonder if any of them will have the courage to have a quick glance into a nearby mirror. Or perhaps it is time for the rest of us to look at this small vocal minority and suggest that we do things differently?