Three weeks today the UK goes to the polls for the General Election. The various political party campaigns officially began just after Easter but it seems to the poor beleaguered electorate as if it began at Christmas.
Tonight on BBC1 there was yet another ‘leader’s debate’ - the third one on a matter of days although this one didn’t feature Prime Minister David Cameron. I’m biased, of course, but the SNP’s First Minister – Nicola Sturgeon – won the debate hands down. She is intelligent, articulate and passionate.
Enjoyable as the debate was, one can fully understand if the electorate start to become rather weary with the election campaign. Yes, it’s important that everyone who can vote does vote come May7th but sometimes I wish the political parties would stop to draw breath – and gie us all a break!
No matter where your political allegiance lies, this story may make you smile. An MP dies and heads up towards the Pearly Gates. There, the MP is greeted by St. Peter.
The MP knows the reputation of many of his colleagues has been tarnished somewhat so he asks St. Peter if it is right he should be allowed into Heaven.
“Well, my son” says St. Peter, “What happens for MPs is that we ask them to vote where they want to go when they die. This way you decide for yourself. You can have five minutes in Heaven and then five minutes in Hell. Then, you come back to me and put a cross on this piece of paper indicating where you would like to go”The MP was somewhat bemused by this but didn’t dare question the words of St. Peter.
He tried Heaven first. It was pretty much as he imagined with peace, tranquillity and kindness – although he didn’t see many ex MPs there…
Then returned to the Pearly Gates and went downstairs to Hell. With some trepidation, he walked in rather gingerly. However, to his astonishment, all he could see was people drinking wine, dining on fine food, partying, having a great time. ‘Wow’ thought the MP who returned to the Pearly Gates after his five minutes were up.
“Well, my son” asked St. Peter, “Here is your voting slip. Put a cross next to either Heaven or Hell, fold it and place it in the box over there.
“Oh, there’s no doubt” the MP thought to himself. “It has to be Hell. They’re all having such a great time down there!” He put his cross next to Hell and put his voting slip in the box as instructed.
“Very well” said St. Peter. “You’ll need to wait here until I come back tomorrow” The MP lay down by a harp and settled down for the night.
In the morning, the MP was taken downstairs to the entrance to Hell. The door opened and he stepped inside. All he could see was desolation, a wasteland with poor, weak people in heavy chains, barely able to walk. He turned to shout to the departing St. Peter.
“What’s this?” he shouted. “Yesterday this was pace was full of joy, merriment and laughter. What’s happened?”
“Ah” said St. Peter, “Yesterday I asked for your vote. Today, I have it…”