Politics.

What a topic. It’s infuriating, interesting and it matters. Politics matters because it impacts each and every one of us, whether we like it or not. So, if you’re a young person interested in it, you’ll need a toolkit to actually be able to decipher fact from fiction, to understand bias and to know whose articles to read.

1. The Parties

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Nigel Farage, leader of UKIP

There are two main parties in England: the Conservative Party and the Labour Party. They are surrounded by many ‘sub-parties’, if you like, which could form coalitions with a government in the case of a hung parliament in a general election. Parties like the Liberal Democrats, the Green Party and UKIP are often the ‘other’ choice for people who are disillusioned with the government in power and the Opposition.

2. Listening

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Prime Minister and leader of the Conservatives, David Cameron

It is important to listen to both the politicians and then commentary and analysis. For example, listen to David Cameron’s speech on staying in the EU, then listen to what the BBC says, what ITV says and then spread out to other news outlets.

3. ‘Other’ news outlets

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BBC’s Political Editor Laura Kuenssberg, who has been accused of Tory bias by viewers

We grow up surrounded with the BBC and ITV. That’s all we initially know when it comes to news. However, the BBC is often accused of being biased towards the Conservative Party. Many believe this is because the government has more control over it than previously and they don’t want to be ripped to shreds. Some claim that ITV is also¬†biased towards the government, meaning it’s hard to find neutral commentary.

Alternative news sites like The Sleuth Journal¬†offer an independent look at the world and the corruption in it too. However, many other sites offer conspiracy theories and distract you from the reason you went there in the first place: to get a clear analysis of today’s news. Ultimately, only you can decide what you think, so read a range of newspapers and online sites, including tabloids and broadsheets. You’ll soon know which way you lean.

4. Write about it!

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Leader of the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn

If you like politics and understand bits and pieces, write about it. When you do that you seem to understand more and more. Before you know it, you’re analysing politicians and the media like it’s second nature.

Good luck. Here’s a meme of Boris, just because we had to:

boris poppins