Nigel Farage as my MP? Let's hope not

I felt very uncomfortable as he took to the stage. The standing ovations were so unsettling

Share

There are so many reasons why having Nigel Farage as an MP would be toxic for South Thanet, my home, and not just because of his politics.

In a constituency with the highest levels of unemployment in the South-east and the highest level of deprivation in the Kent districts, it is clear why Ukip and its pledge to get back British jobs for British people is appealing. But to this 18-year-old with a keen interest in politics, I believe it would be a negative outcome.

South Thanet does not need a person who prides himself on his drinking in pubs but someone who can change the outlook of local people, defusing their hostilities towards Romanians and other immigrants.

It seems as if the main problem isn't so much Farage but that the people from my area feel as if the only party which could represent them is one of intolerance and prejudice; that they are stuck in a mindset which says the only reason they are unemployed is because non-British people have taken all the jobs. However, in verbalising these thoughts, Farage is strengthening these fears and causing them to increase.

Mild racists preaching views of inequality – if this is truly where politics and Britain are headed, then I fear for the future. I fear that our country, after coming so far in terms of equality, will end up socially backwards; that there will be a furthering of political disenchantment, something we cannot afford to let happen. Ukip's future could impact on mine.

I intend to study politics at university, so, before the European elections, when Farage held a rally in Margate, my friend and I went to hear what he had to say, away from the media spotlight. Naively, we believed that it would be an open meeting and that other non-Ukippers would have come to hear him, but we seemed to be the only two there.

Surrounded by mainly middle-aged, white men and a few women, we felt out of place. But we became even more uncomfortable when Farage finally took to the stage. The standing ovations were so unsettling that we wanted the floor to open up and swallow us. Strangely, his racist remark about not wanting to live next door to Romanians, which he had publicly explained away as being down to "tiredness", was repeated during the rally, eliciting another ovation.

Despite our unease, it was hard to look away: Nigel Farage's ability as a public speaker is incredible. There was something very 1930s about it all. This man's every sentence had his audience wrapped around his little finger. He seemed to be indoctrinating them with every word.

The more platforms Farage is given on which to display this rhetoric and warped charisma, the more those who feel disenfranchised and silenced will support him; and the more fear will be caused. I fervently hope Thanet doesn't become a Ukip seat.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

IT Project Manager

Competitive: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based in Chelmsford a...

Business Intelligence Specialist - work from home

£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and growing IT Consultancy fir...

Business Intelligence Specialist - work from home

£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and growing IT Consultancy fir...

IT Manager

£40000 - £45000 per annum + pension, healthcare,25 days: Ashdown Group: An est...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Nigel Farage has urged supporters to buy Mike Read's Ukip Calypso song and push it up to the No 1 spot  

Mike Read’s Ukip calypso is mesmerisingly atrocious — but it's not racist

Matthew Norman
Shirley Shackleton, wife of late journalist Gregory Shackleton, sits next to the grave of the 'Balibo Five' in Jakarta, in 2010  

Letter from Asia: The battle for the truth behind five journalists’ deaths in Indonesia

Andrew Buncombe
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals

'You need me, I don’t need you'

Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals
How to Get Away with Murder: Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama

How to Get Away with Murder

Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama
A cup of tea is every worker's right

Hard to swallow

Three hospitals in Leicester have banned their staff from drinking tea and coffee in public areas. Christopher Hirst explains why he thinks that a cuppa is every worker's right
Which animals are nearly extinct?

Which animals are nearly extinct?

Conservationists in Kenya are in mourning after the death of a white northern rhino, which has left the species with a single male. These are the other species on the brink
12 best children's shoes

Perfect for leaf-kicking: 12 best children's shoes

Find footwear perfect to keep kids' feet protected this autumn
Anderlecht vs Arsenal: Gunners' ray of light Aaron Ramsey shines again

Arsenal’s ray of light ready to shine again

Aaron Ramsey’s injury record has prompted a club investigation. For now, the midfielder is just happy to be fit to face Anderlecht in the Champions League
Comment: David Moyes' show of sensitivity thrown back in his face by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson

Moyes’ show of sensitivity thrown back in his face... by Ferguson

Manchester United legend tramples on successor who resisted criticising his inheritance
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells