On Voting, And Emma Nicholson

“If voting could change anything, they’d make it illegal.” Old saying, from the 1960s counterculture.
The latest eruption in the ongoing culture wars, fuelled by Twitter as ever, is against Baroness (Emma) Nicholson of Winterbourne, who has been stripped of her largely honorary post on the committee that awards the Booker Prize. Her late husband set up the award many years ago.
Her crime was to vote, again some years ago, against the legal establishment of gay marriage, as I understand. Various authors, one of them gay, say this now makes her unsuitable.
Not entirely clear how this connects, especially as this is an honorary post, as I have said. I know a little about Nicholson. She appears to be a typical Shires Tory lady. I doubt she and I agree on anything much but I have to respect her views. She has done a lot of good work for the disabled.
The key point here, and one largely missed I think, is the word vote. Nicholson has been vilified and sacked because, in a democratic vote some years ago, she voted in a way that some now disapprove of. This is how democracy is supposed to work, a free and fair ballot on any subject, and to punish someone for voting the wrong way, some years later, negates the whole concept of democracy, then. And sets, I suggest, a very dark precedent.
For a fair discussion of all this, see today’s column by my fellow Suffolk resident, former colleague and a very brave journalist, Janice Turner. https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/the-righteous-anger-train-is-out-of-control-0zq3cgdkk

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s