Future Reflections

David Henry, Salford and Eccles 2010 General Election Reflections

Last week I stood in an election for the first time in my life.

This wasn’t just any election, it was the 2010 General Election which will without a doubt go down in history as the most significant in British politics. Regardless of the outcomes and implications for democracy, I am immensely proud to have played my part.

I’m forever grateful to of all those who did the same – in particular those friends, comrades, allies and hundreds of supporters of all political persuasions who made it all happen. It would take me a lifetime to name them all, but you know who you are…

I wanted to be able to talk more openly about where we are now far sooner, for those who have been waiting I can only apologise. It is vitally important I get my points across properly. so it’s taken me quite a few days to reflect on the highs, the lows, but I’m certain about one thing – we achieved more than we could ever have expected. Those feelings of immense feeling of joy and satisfaction will be with me forever.

Glancing at the news, Twitter, Facebook, not to mention my inbox of 1000’s of unopened emails it is difficult to keep up. Every minute of the day there seems to be another earth-moving development.

This is one of many articles I’ll be writing, so please stick with me. So far I’ve churned out pages which could easily fill several books, so I’ve decided to publish everything all bit by bit.

Anti-Politics?

Less than a year ago you could have firmly placed me in the “anti-politics” camp. I remain unconvinced of the significance electoral activism plays in bringing about social change, in fact these past few months have strengthened that view. I’ve always been firmly of the mindset that grass roots campaigning is the heart and soul and the driving force behind everything that happens above and beyond it, I made this clear when I was selected to stand for Parliament and I stick by that admission to this day.

Anti-Politics as a narrow term is a contradiction. I’ve always had great admiration for figures within the Anarchist movement such as the late Emma Goldman. That’s not to say I should have to define as an ‘Anarchist’ no more than I feel the need to define as an ‘Environmentalist’ for continuing to advocate a sustainable society and being proud of the election of the first Green MP Caroline Lucas.

People have tried their hardest to define me, I’ve been labelled everything under the sun these past few months – mostly with some degree of malice by those who simply misinterpret my open-minded, non-sectarian willingness work with anyone who generally agrees with what I stand for.

Everything is political – voting, parties and policies aside, “politics” in any shape of form from the radio station you prefer to the colour of your socks is a fundamentally human trait. Politics is the nature of choice. We all have the freedom to make our own decisions and that’s a right I will defend until the day I die.

Where Next?

Now for the biggest question of them all!… I’m still not sure exactly where we go all from here, nor have I fully explored the mind-boggling labyrinth of opportunities available. From the start I’ve called for “Left Unity”. Here in Salford that’s exactly what we achieved.

I’m hoping the Convention of the Left and similar collective groupings will lead the way in outlining a programme for the future of genuine, progressive politics.

Shiny new doors have been opened in my own world which I may yet decide wander into, and few have closed but at the moment – I’ve not made any decisions. I’m keeping an open mind with a view to follow what my heart tells me is best.

I’ve got to get back to work, we all need to pay the bills. Employment opportunities were drying up before the election campaign began, although I’ve now got a number of exciting options to pursue as well as community projects I desperately need to return to.

The future starts now, let’s keep looking forward to it.

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One Response to Future Reflections

  1. Joel Sloan says:

    Excellent work David, keep on fighting the good fight. You are an asset to Salford and represent it much more than Hazel ever could.

    Take care

    Joel

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