This is why it was a massive mistake for US states to allow new residents to vote. This rootless nomad is moving on after all of 14 years because he doesn’t like the way the politicians for whom he voted are governing Seattle.
I KNEW Seattle was no longer a place for me when I met with Debora Juarez — the District 5 City Council member I had voted for.
Last September, at what I thought was going to be a friendly one-on-one meeting between an elected official and her constituent, I expressed some concerns that were on my mind. I fretted over the deterioration of a city with which I had fallen in love — a city that, despite my 21 trips to Europe, I still believe to be the most beautiful in the world.
I told my council member that Northgate, my home, had seen a noticeable increase in litter and graffiti. To my dismay, she seemed to suggest these issues were someone else’s job, not hers. So, I moved on to a bigger issue: homelessness.
When I first moved to Seattle 14 years ago, to attend the University of Washington, homelessness essentially didn’t exist at Northgate. Though I have never been a victim of or witness to a crime, some of my neighbors have been, and they believe homeless camps are the reason. Additionally, the conditions in such camps are often atrocious — not only are the homeless more likely to be victims of violent crime, they are susceptible to infectious disease, such as the hepatitis A outbreak in San Diego that sickened nearly 500 people and has killed 20.
I believe strongly that it is not compassionate to leave people who are unable or unwilling to care for themselves to suffer and die on the street. Because many (but certainly not all) homeless people struggle with mental illness or drug addiction, I suggested that Seattle find a way to make it easier to provide treatment to these troubled souls — involuntarily, if need be. It could literally save their lives.
Juarez exclaimed, “What is this? Nazi Germany?” Appalled — in part because my grandparents survived Nazi Germany — I got up and walked out….So, my wife and I are heading to the Eastside. We really would prefer to stay in Seattle. But if safe streets, clean sidewalks, an affordable place to live and polite discourse is asking too much, we’ll gladly seek refuge in a city where quality of life and civility still matter.
Guess what sort of politician this guy is going to vote for in the next election in his new city. Almost certainly the exact same sort of politician he helped elect whose policies he is fleeing now.
This is why skin in the game matters. This is why it is a mistake for farmers to permit nomads to dwell among them, much less be permitted any voice in how they order their societies. When things fall apart, the nomad will move on and the farmers will be left to pick up the pieces as best they can. And this is why no immigrants, foreign or domestic, should be permitted any vote in a democracy or a republic for at least five generations.
The fact that one dislikes the consequences of one’s own vote enough to flee them should be sufficient cause to deny one’s future right to vote. Man’s ideologies and political philosophies have not yet caught up with his transportation technology and his ability to travel around the world to escape the consequences of his actions.