Here we go again!

So another election is on the horizon – well, its actually much closer than that. The PM has decided that she needs a mandate to take the country forward and into a new era. The good news is that there are only a few weeks of campaigning as I think the nation is still electioned out from the referendum last year! The bad news is that its going to turn into the Brexit election.

Labour and all the remainers will play on the fact that if they get into power, they will lead with a soft Brexit – whatever that looks like. The government will play on the fact that they are in the best position to deliver Brexit and bring the nation out of the other side stronger and more global. There is a danger that we could be looking at a re-run of the referendum.

As voters, we need to think about that this next government will not just take us through the Brexit process, but will then govern for another three years after that. Britain stands at a crossroads in its history. As a nation, we now need to look for stability. A change in government now will de-stabilise the nation, all the preparation work done to begin the Brexit negotiations will have to start again and more uncertainty will come into the markets and economy.

The bitter arguments and resentment between both sides during the referendum could re-surface again. A general election is supposed to be about who will represent your local area in Parliament and work for your interests – and not making it about an issue which has already been decided.

Lets hope that this election is about issues that will affect people every day – healthcare, jobs, education, taxation, etc. Yes, Brexit will be a theme that runs through all these things, but its happening and so we should be looking to the future about what Britain will look like after we leave the EU. It should be about building a better future for the nation, but I fear that the main issues will be about the Brexit negotiations and all sides will slide into a tit-for-tat war of words (again).

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Kinder Eggs? No. Guns? No problem. LGBT? Who cares?

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The recent attack in Orlando has once again highlighted the gun control issue in the United States. A country that has banned Kinder Eggs because they think children will try and eat the toy as well as the chocolate refuses to ban guns which can cause so much destruction. Why do they refuse to stand down on the issue? Until they tackle the problem, these things will continue to happen.

Australia have shown the US the way. 20 years ago, they significantly tightened the gun laws and since then, there have been no mass shootings in their country. There will always be those who are intent on killing and will get their hands on a weapon but having them so readily available just makes it easier for that split second of rage to come out and fire a gun. There is a 28 day waiting period to own a gun in Australia. That waiting time is crucial between someone already owning a gun, getting into a rage about something and picking it up and shooting people, to someone getting into a rage, going into a shop, waiting a month only to find that their mindset has changed in that time.

The Orlando shooting killed 49 people. Whether they were gay, straight, etc has no bearing on it whatsoever. They were people. Why does the LGBT community feel the need to jump on this and declare that they are the victims here? They shout about being included in society and treated the same as everyone else – yet as soon as something like this happens, they go back to being their own group within society. In the Paris attacks, did fans of the band Eagles Of Death Metal around the world come out and say that they were being attacked? Have a look at this video https://youtu.be/TEgd9q8ugs4 as a prime example.

The tragic shooting of Jo Cox shows that in the UK, if one person is killed by a gun, its a national tragedy. The US has become so used to shootings that its just another day. This cannot be right, and should not be the case. Shootings in the UK are, thankfully, so few and far between. This is of no comfort to the family of Jo Cox but it shows just what gun control can do.

As Obama leaves the White House later this year, as one last legacy, why not tighten gun control? It wont be popular, but its not like he is trying to win votes. If he does it, and it works, in 20 years time when the number of mass shootings has dramatically reduced, people will thank him.

All centralised institutions are corrupt

All centralised institutions are corrupt

The debate as to whether we should remain in the EU will go on well after 23rd June. Do we stay in and continue to pay billions every year to reap the benefits of a single market and freedom of movement? Or do we leave, save billions but jump into an unknown future both economically and socially?

Centralised power brings with it corruption, red tape and bureaucracy. Whether all centralised institutions are corrupt is a matter of interpretation, however, larger institutions where the majority of the power lies centrally will have some form of corruption – whether that’s financial or otherwise. The basic principle of decentralised power is that it is local people electing local people to judge, govern and make decisions on their behalf. The biblical principle is that we should appoint judges and officials for each tribe who will judge the people fairly. People from outside the tribe must integrate with them if they want to remain.

It is much harder to be corrupt when power is spread around, irregularities are easier to spot when one particular area stands out and local people have a vested interest in what they are doing. Do the MEPs in Brussels really care about small villages in Estonia, or rural farms in the north of Scotland? 

So, does this mean we should come out of Europe and go it alone? We would be stepping into an unknown. What will the economic implications be, if any? What will it mean socially for us as a nation? Whatever the result in June, the what ifs and theorising will go on.

Will the Manchester Boris stop you getting mugged?

Will the Manchester Boris stop you getting mugged?
You are three times more likely to get mugged in Manchester than in other cities across the UK. Would a Manchester Boris be brave enough to tackle this issue or would they just look to tow a political line?
Manchester will get its own Boris Johnson next year. For some, this will fill them with dread but for all his bafoonery and gaffs, he does care and fight for London. He fights the local issues and is not afraid to go against his party line. Manchester needs someone like this – someone who cares for the place they are supposed to represent.
That person needs to have kingdom values – justice, righteousness and live for the city. Does Boris Johnson have these attributes? To some extent, yes. He fights for justice but is fair. Look at the recent issue over the tube strike. He stood his ground because he felt what was on offer was fair. He also loves his city.
So, will the Manchester Boris stop you getting mugged? The answer will lie in whether that person is brave enough to stand up for what they believe is right for the city.

A new governance model – righteousness, justice and compassion

  

Do people get the governments they deserve? Are people prepared to fight for a government they want or need? What is the model that people are looking for? We tend to vote for the government that fulfils our self-interest and what benefits us the most. We should be looking for a government model that benefits society as a whole, but what does that model look like?

Why shouldn’t governments be built on justice, righteousness and compassion? Would voters bring in a government that stands up for what is just and right? Would the people see the compassion that wants to be shown and feel the compassion themselves? 

A government is supposed to lead the people. If a government wants a nation that shows compassion towards others, that live righteously and just, then that government should lead the people that way. Governance in many countries today now lies with the people. This is not where governance should lie. The people should have a say but that is why we elect leaders. A country’s governance should firmly be with the government. They are there to lead and govern, sticking to the principles that they stood for which enabled them to be voted in.  

Governance in the UK is on the decline. There is no strong governance within the politicians of today. They don’t look to do what is right but what will win them the next election. As soon as a new government starts, it is already looking towards the next election. This is no way to govern. Once voted in, a government should be looking to fulfil its pledges and its manifesto that people voted for. 
An ideal world would see everybody living a just life, doing what is right and showing compassion to others around. This can only work if everyone buys into this philosophy. Even a minority that do not follow these principles can upset the balance of society. However, a government that promotes these principles can try and reduce this minority as much as possible. 

Good governance means no corruption, or at least a reduced chance of corruption. Having no governance means corruption can easily enter the political arena. Good governance will mean that we will live in a just and fair society where those that don’t want to participate will either simply leave or will live with the consequences. A system of righteousness, justice and compassion would benefit everyone and would make that city or nation a force in the world. 

Mis-shaped fruit is just as good for you

  

When you go to the supermarket, do you ever see an apple that’s not quite round or a carrot that’s not straight? The answer is usually no. We have been conditioned to think that if a fruit is not ‘perfectly’ formed, it won’t contain the same goodness or taste just as good. A mis-shaped fruit will have grown on the same tree, in the same conditions at the same time. For whatever reason, one particular Apple or strawberry may be a different shape than the others. 

Why should this perfectly good fruit just be thrown away when it can bring goodness to someone who eats it? There is a parallel between this and the argument over abortion. The world has conditioned people to think that if an unborn baby is not perfect or its a little mis-shapen, we should just get rid of it. This baby though will have a destiny. There must be a reason why this child was conceived, it must have a destiny – just like all babies have. As soon as conception takes place, this baby is alive. My belief is that all babies have the right to life. 

Attitudes in society have made it seem more acceptable that babies are a commodity and to some, a fashion accessory. Society has made it OK to think that if a woman gets pregnant and it will be an inconvenience then it can be aborted. Society has somehow masked the fact that abortion is killing a living baby. 

This cannot be something that we want the next generation to know as the norm. The more we dilute and the more we just accept that this is OK, what will become the norm next? 

Every person has a destiny on their life. Only God can decide how long a person will live. If a person has a disability, does this mean that God cannot use them? No. It means God will use the disability to his advantage. Maybe that person will be able to touch others in the disability community. Maybe God will perform a miracle on that person at some point in their life which will inspire many more people. 

A strawberry contains goodness whether it looks like the ones that are served at Wimbledon or looks like the one above. An unborn child has a destiny on its life and has value as a human being whether it’s perfectly healthy or has a disability. 

Help them, but don’t just open the gates

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The refugee crisis that has engulfed Europe over the past couple of weeks has raised many questions about what we could, and many claim the UK should, do to help those fleeing Syria and other countries. Should we just open the borders and let thousands of people enter into our nation? Should we be helping them in their own country? Is it even our problem?

As a country with Christian roots, does this mean that should Britain should be willing to help all those in need by allowing them to enter the country? The UK government has an obligation to its citizens to ensure that their welfare is taken care of and that they are protected. The government has to decide whether allowing thousands of migrants to enter the country would jeopardise this.

We also have to consider that many people that are trying to get into Europe are doing so illegally and without a true humanitarian reason. The situation that played out in Hungary did not help the cause of those with genuine refugee status and need. They were trying to enter illegally, refusing to follow the process set out in the country they were trying to enter and caused disruption to that nation and to the wider community. I have read many articles quoting various bible verses, some taken out of context with some raising a valid point. One thing that scripture does say is to always obey and respect the government and the laws of the country you are in.

Why is it that these Syrians, the majority of whom will be Muslim, are trying to get to Christian countries? The principles and constitution of this country stand on Christian values. Muslims have strong faith in what they believe and so would tend not to integrate and adopt Christian principles. The bible describes these types of people as foreigners, whilst Aliens are described as those that come from a foreign land with a genuine desire to integrate and fit into the society they are joining. If Britain let in 10,000, how many would fit into our society or would they cause more fragmentation?

What are other Muslim countries doing to help their fellow Muslims? Should a Christian nation be diluting their society when there are clearly other nations more aligned with those seeking to flee their nation? Take Turkey for example. It has the 18th largest economy in the world (according to World Bank) and although a democracy it is a practising Muslim country. Whilst Turkey do take in a lot of refugees from Syria already (around 1.7m), they are well placed to accept them in and to ‘broker’ a true humanitarian solution Firstly, they would be helping fellow Muslims who would be able to integrate within society a lot easier than in a Christian country and secondly, they are geographically placed in an ideal location. The refugees wouldn’t need to risk their lives trying to travel thousands of miles, hiding in lorries and trying to go through the channel tunnel. The international community would be able to give aid to help Turkey cope with the influx.

Is this the stance Britain should be taking and promoting within the wider community? We shouldn’t just be opening our borders to anyone who has the ability to stir the media sufficiently to get their own way, but to those who have genuine refugee status and humanitarian need, not just social want. Clearly it would be beneficial for all if we gave aid to help those in need, so is opening our borders the only way to help these refugees? No. Do we have an obligation to help others who are desperately trying to get away from a war torn country? Yes. As a nation, we should be helping those in need, whatever their religion or ethnicity. However, the recent crisis has shown that if people move on mass, cause enough trouble and get the media attention, then this seems to be a move away from humanitarian need towards social rebellion to force countries into doing something they may not want or need to do.