Talk about madness. On December 9th, the New York City Council will most probably pass a law that would permit non-citizens to vote in elections for Mayor, City Council, Borough Presidents, school boards and most probably, dog catchers. Lunacy to the Nth degree. But you’ve got to give the Council members credit for persevering in their goal to destroy the big Big Apple. Over 800,000 non-citizens, both green card holders and non-citizens who have lived in the city for at least (WOW!) 30 consecutive days prior to the election, will have the opportunity to become voters if this legislation, titled, “Our City, Our Vote,” as it surely will, passes. More loaded moving trucks headed south.
According to the New York Times, the new law would grant New York City (which is the largest municipality in the country) the ability to allow non-citizens the right to vote in local elections. Even current Mayor deBlasio who is not known as much of a political conservative has reservations about this although he has little chance of stopping it since the Council will surely ram it through. He fears, rightly so, that the bill would reduce the incentive for immigrants to become citizens – should citizenship no longer be required to participate in local elections.
Ydanis Rodriquez, a Council member who became a citizen in 2000, said “We are restoring the rights of individuals who pay their taxes. This is about taxation without representation.” So, if an illegal immigrant pays sales tax in the store, he has the right to vote? Give us a break. And what about real citizens, non residents with second homes or apartments in the city who actually pay property taxes? What about international students who live in the city who pay taxes on merchandise purchased in the city? Shouldn’t the above also get the right to choose local leaders? Why not? And what’s stopping all who really want to become part of our city to not seek citizenship?
NYC’s Board of Elections showed its weakness at bookkeeping when it indicated it couldn’t even handle the tabulation of ballots after last year’s boondoggle election. What will it do next year (if this legislation passes) when these million or so non-citizens go to the polls? Will they be handed only ballots for just the city elections? Two sets of ballots – one for citizens and one for non citizens? A mish-mash sure to happen.
We fear this move is just another to denigrate our nation. To destroy the pride we used to have at being “Americans.” Our parents came here to stay, not to merely visit for a month or two. They gave this nation there all. They studied to learn about this nation. They learned English to indicate their love for this land. They cajoled their kids to “Speak only English! You’re in America.” They immersed themselves to assimilate, to become citizens, legally. They had a test to pass in order to proudly call themselves “Americans.” They lined up to vote on Election Day, rain, shine or cold. It wasn’t, and it shouldn’t be easy to become a citizen and have the gifts accorded to that status. But the move, growing all around the country is to make the designation; “citizen,” worthless. And with it the pride in this country. Sad, that New York City, the home of Ellis Island is now the leader in abolishing citizenship.