With today being election day, I found myself in a bit of a bind. Actually many binds. Binds and conflictions. As with most election days, it is important to vote for various reasons, including the right and opportunity to have your voice heard, and for the struggle and persecution for which many (minorities and women) experienced in order for us to have such an opportunity. And with this election coming off the heels of one of the most important elections in history, there is a lack of urgency that seemed to have been burned out after last year’s election.
Let me first admit, I am no political expert. I am not aware of who holds all the positions, who does what, and all of the other deep on goings. Continuing, nor am I a political fanatic that is engaged with political news, rumors, lobbying, feuds, and statements that some find informational, and somewhat entertaining. However, make no mistake about it, I am aware of the topics, the general positions of representation, and like most Americans, how they can affect change if they are in office.
With that said, today marks the election of what I feel is one of the most important jobs in the land - Mayor of New York City. It is pretty clear that most Mayors across the nation do not have the responsibilities (and headaches) that comes with the position. It’s a different animal. A beast. A position that requires a lot of elements including luck.
This year’s candidates albeit, including many others from students to the infamous naked cowboy, comes down to two men – Michael Bloomberg and Bill Thompson.
The issue that has left me, and probably others questioning their vote, is the topic of term limits. Bloomberg, the current Mayor for the last eight years has done a great job of restoring this city following the effects of 9/11. Crime rates are lower than ever, strict gun laws are in place (ask Plaxico Burress), Schools are in the process of being overhauled, and our city is being economically responsible.
Yet, after eight years of good service, at least in my opinion, and here at the DP, it usually is, Mayor Bloomberg changed the law of term limits to become eligible to run once again. And in addition to that, Bloomberg is seeking complete authority over New York City schools, and other City operations.
On the other side, former New York City Comptroller, Bill Thompson, has several years of experience in handling this city’s finances, and has interesting ideas and abilities that can help move this city forward.
Yet, this election comes down to a factor of allowance. The issue of term limits was placed in the constitution regarding presidency to limit the power of an individual, and from having "King-like” reigns. And the more good Bloomberg has done, the more power he has seemed to inherit. Is that a healthy recipe for a city?
That is the issue here with Mayor Bloomberg. Do we allow a man, who has a done a great job, to continue on with his vision on moving New York forward despite changing term limit laws and increasing power, or do we move forward with fresh ideas, new concepts, and partly, the unknown?
It is a tough call for voters today who, like me, aren’t exactly committed to either candidate. Unfortunately, I had to make a decision, and I did. What decision would/did you make?