European Parliament election results are out, local council results are out too, all is done and dusted, the result is what it is black on white but there are a million and one interpretations of this result, according from which perspective one looks at it. There certainly are diverging opinions on who should go and who should stay, about what caused such haemorrhage within the Nationalist Party about how Labour is dominating the political scene with victory after victory both on a national and even on local levels and if such a resounding Labour victory is actually beneficial for democracy. Does the general feel good factor translate correctly in such a landslide or is it diluted with the fact that the Nationalist Party is at the ropes and does not inspire trust nor does it appeal to potential new voters? Nevertheless the people have spoken, and that is what ultimately counts. We all have to extract the answers we want from this result and make the decisions that ought to be taken. This exercise should be undertaken not only by the political parties, the candidates and their leaders but by each and every individual that cares about Malta and what the future holds.
It is interesting how varying the reactions have been. How aspirations differ from the reality and how the mighty can fall with the stroke of a pen or pencil. I fund local council elections much more fair than EU elections because councillors are judged on a performances that can be more closely scrutinized on a daily basis, because their input or lack of it is more tangible, less complicated and more direct, subsequently effecting the community in a more intimate way. This alone is proof of how successful the introduction of local government was. I firmly believe that the voter apathy shown in certain localities was not due to the council or its councillors underperforming but a means to send a message to the government or the opposition regarding their performance on a national level. It would be unwise to dismiss these messages.
Electoral campaigns will always leave casualties, but what bothered me most was the level of hatred shown by some. It is unacceptable in a time and age where we boast about equal rights for every one that political adversaries are treated in such a degrading manner. Personal attacks are a serious no go but it seems that we do not know any better. Social media portals were bombarded with messages of derogatory nature and this belittles us, this is not liberty of expression, this is in your face libertinage, and whilst one in a while some idiot gets caught and arraigned, the majority can get away unscathed and sometimes even encouraged . We boast that we are a nation that is ready to help everyone that is in need yet we do not blink an eye before demonizing our political enemies. It is unacceptable and exposes the shallowness of our morality.
This country needs to move forward, with the premise to improve and to become the ideal place where to raise a family, where to live in a healthy environment, where opportunities are equal to all irrespective of their political beliefs, skin colour and sexual orientation. We have to learn to live with each other and whilst politics is an important democratic tool, we have to cease making a political issue out of the smallest, slightest problem. We cannot say it is a crater when it is a pothole just like we cannot say all the streets are paved in gold. Good politicians are rare, we cannot afford to lose more valid people due to bickering and dishonest manoeuvres. It saddens me to see people like David Stellini call it quits because the system failed him. He was one of the few that believed that even people from different political spectra could work together in unity for the greater good. Ultimately it was his own party that let him down. He will be missed, not for his outstanding oratory which I must say was just average, he will be missed, not for his outstanding interventions in the house, he will be missed for his unconditional availability, for his honesty, he will be missed for being genuine for not harvesting a secret agenda. That is why David could not go on. Malta and Gozo will miss him and we all should learn a lesson from this loss and be mature enough in our actions so as to not to lose more valid people from within our fold.
I am still hopeful that we are not too late to change. I trust that the young generation of politicians will be made up of more David Stellinis and fewer prima donnas