Read an interesting article by David Boeri on NPR this morning. He writes about the
six white candidates, six African-American — six black candidates, two Latinos candidates and one Asian running for the four at large seats on the Boston City Council.
He wants these 'New Bostonian's" to run for and win seats on the council. Something he does not feel will happen, for which he blames 'Old Boston' You know, people like me. People who roots in the city, people who care about the city, who vote. From reading the article he wants New Boston to vote more, and Old Boston to vote less. Or to just step aside and let the new younger generation take over.
In my experience, they don't want to. David uses the numbers given him by the Vietnamese candidate Hiep Nguyen, who says there are approximately 40,000 Vietnamese living in the city. Of those 40,000 maybe ten percent are registered. This is a smaller number than the percent of the community believed to be in Boston illegally. - One out of every six, in case anyone wants to do the math.
Instead of writing about why this community should vote, David takes issue with the people who do. Saying
"So it’s not the New Boston, but the old electorate that decides who governs.
“They are the traditional middle class, lower middle class,” says former City Councilor and former mayoral candidate Larry DiCara. He says it’s also the Catholics, the Irish and the Italians, its South Boston and West Roxbury who consistently vote.
“These are folks who are older, most of the time they are property owners,” DiCara goes on, “in many cases, they are elderly people in subsidized housing, where they’re easy to find and the polling place is often in the building.”
Cops, firemen, teachers, city employees — they all turn out consistently. Not so, the New Boston. When Deval Patrick ran an historic race for governor in 2006, 56 percent of Boston’s registered voters turned out. And when Barack Obama ran in 2008, turnout was 62 percent.
As long as the people living in Boston are not citizens, or do not register to vote the city will be run buy those who want to run it. I was raised to understand that voting is important, is a duty the price I pay for living in this great city.
I guess that makes me part of old Boston, my family has been here for many many generations. We all work hard, pay our taxes own homes and vote. New Boston is as shown in this article, made up of non citizens (many illegal) not voting people. If they are uninterested in helping to run the city, in helping to improve the city.
Well are we the Old Boston suppose to step aside? Should we also stop caring about this great city? The neighborhoods of Beacon Hill and Commonwealth Avenue are still affluent but have low voter. The people who live in those areas have no interest in staying in Boston, they don't set down roots in the city.
Much like someone who moves to Boston and never learns the language, they have no interest in Boston, not the Old and certainly not the New.
This article reads as a suggestion that Old Boston should step aside for the New Boston. Well I have yet to see much proof that New Boston much cares about taking care of the city. So it's up to Old Boston to continue caring for the city.
Stop telling Old Boston to step aside. Tell New Boston to step up. And if they prove themselves to be good caretakers they can share this great city.
In order to be the new electorate, New Boston has to start electing people. Which means getting interested in politics, becoming citizens when they can. Registering to vote, turning out.
I predict a very low voter turnout in the next elections. A city council that looks much the same as it does now. Not because it's a bad thing because the city council reflects the people who care about the city. New Boston does not exist, not as long as they sit on the sidelines. Be the the affluent of Back Bay, or the horribly poor of the Chinatown. You don't get a voice until you demand one, or better yet earn one.
Don't be angry at me because I vote, turn your angst toward those who refuse to. Get them to take the first step.