IF Spain graciously condescends to give Europeans legally resident just a mere 1/4 of the voting rights enjoyed by our Spanish friends and neighbours, perhaps we European residents should boycott the next elections altogether?
We can vote for (1) the Mayor, but not for (2) the Consell (island councils), nor (3) the Balearic parliamentary elections nor (4) our MP in Madrid. One out of four.
I don't even know if we can vote for (5) our Euro MP (editor's note: Yes we can).
We Europeans are not second-class, but fourth-class (or 5th class) citizens - we have less voting rights than prison inmates.
Why do we continue to participate in this democratic farce?
The same applies to the Spanish legally resident in the UK - also disenfranchised.
Europe is not progressing nor evolving, but relapsing and collapsing democratically. As Europeans move, more and more, the less the number of people allowed to vote. Imagine the following extreme but logical scenario: if everyone in Europe moved, no-one at all would be allowed to vote. How bizarre is that? At present, 15 million Europeans are not allowed to vote where they are resident. A declaration of political bankruptcy and a disgrace for democracy.
Even voting for the mayor seems a privilege here, not a right.
The Spanish get this right automatically with no extra bureaucratic hurdles. Why are we not placed automatically on the electoral census when we become empadronado? The two would seem to go together.
If they summon me to be a good citizen and help out at the voting booth, I will stay for just one quarter of the time in proportion to my 1/4 enfranchisement.
How can they expect a fourth-class citizen to serve all day, watching while their neighbours vote for Mayor, Consell, Cort and Madrid?
Either we finally get full voting rights or we do not vote at all. Either way, this democratic farce stops.
Dr. Garry Bonsall
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