By Edith Bargoma, Rakeen Dow, Charlotte Forrester, Nancy Hanks, Richard Ronner, and Philip Safer
New Yorkers across the state have a rare and important opportunity to vote for a state constitutional convention in November. It is one of the few chances we have as citizens directly to make positive and lasting change by our own hands and with our own votes. We have an opportunity to fix problems (like Albany) from the outside in. Clearly it will never happen from the insiders.
This opportunity to amend the state Constitution is required by law to be put before the voters once every 20 years. It is written into law for a reason. We can govern ourselves when the political elite refuse to get the job done. Politico cited our Empire State as the most corrupt in the entirety of our 50 United States. That is shameful.
Opposition groups to the constitutional convention are using a myriad of absurd and insulting scare tactics to get New Yorkers to vote no. They think when they have you scared, they have you stuck. But what are they scared of?
They won’t tell voters is that we have the final say! We vote for the convention, We vote for the convention delegates, and after all that – no matter what the delegates we chose come up with – we get to vote again, as a state and a people, for the changes we want to implement or discard. Nothing changes without our approval.
On Tuesday Nov. 7, flip your ballot over and make Proposal 1, priority No. 1. When it comes to making positive practical change for our state and our people, I’ll trust my fellow New Yorkers over professional politicians or political parties any day of the week. Vote yes for a constitutional convention Nov. 7.
Do we want to take power from the politicians and give more power to the voters? Do we want to decrease the authoritarian control of Albany? Do we want to self-govern? Do we want our constitution to defend the right of every New Yorker to vote without having to join a political party? Do we want housing guaranteed as a right? If your answer is “Yes!” step one is to turn your ballot over and vote yes on Prop #1 on Election Day.
Edith Bargoma, Richmond Hill
Rakeen Dow, Jamaica
Charlotte Forrester, East Meadow
Nancy Hanks, Sunnyside
Richard Ronner, Astoria
Philip Safer, Kew Gardens