Friday, July 02, 2010

UPDATED FRIDAY NIGHT HANKSTER CHAT: How Independents Can Make the Most of the Fourth of July

UPDATED 12/15/12 -- Fourth of July in December! Talk about perfect timing -- I received an email the other day letting me know that there was a broken link on my post FRIDAY NIGHT HANKSTER CHAT: How Independents Can Make the Most of the Fourth of July

We have replaced the link in the second line "Read a section of the Constitution..."


You probably have plans to get together with friends and family for a joyous backyard or public park BBQ!  Here are some ideas to enhance your Fourth of July celebration:

Read a section of the Constitution as you're turning the dogs and burgers...

Let people know there's a radical independent streak in America that doesn't much cotton to the ideological right wing...

Get in touch with our working class history!

Here's what I'll be doing:

Drive around Queens County, one of the 5 boros of New York City, knocking on doors of independent voters (Independence Party members to be exact) petitioning to qualify candidates for the ballot.

New York City Independence Party Press Secretary sent this email to The Hankster today, and if you're in NYC -- or elsewhere, you might want to celebrate Independence Day by checking out these events and news items:

Dr. Lenora Fulani will be speaking at Rev. Sharpton's National Action Network meeting on Saturday hosted this week by attorney Michael Hardy. 
Tune in to WLIB 1190 am on Saturday, July 3rd from 9:00 - 11:00 am and listen to an important discussion on the issue of nonpartisan elections and its relevance to the black community.

This week an open letter to the Charter Revision Commission from a cross-section of 32 religious and community leaders, political independents, civil rights activists, educators, labor activists and elected officials was delivered to the Commission  urging them to place an initiative for nonpartisan elections on the ballot this November. The letter states in part:

Much has changed since 2003 when this matter was first put on the ballot. Voters are more restless, more frustrated with partisanship, and less content with traditional party politics. We believe the time has come for a full and open dialogue on the best ways to make our system more responsive to the changes in political attitudes. Putting the measure on the ballot will provide that forum...Such a dialogue should not be short-circuited on the basis of partisan calculation.  Let the voters be the judge.
You can read a press release on the open letter's submission here.
Also this week the 111-year-old good government group, Citizen's Union, has come out in favor of nonpartisan elections reversing their position from 2003. A New York Times article (p. A26, July 2, 2010) begins: 
In a reversal, a prominent government watchdog said Wednesday that it now supported eliminating the role of parties in city elections, adding momentum to an effort to bring the issue before voters in November. The group, Citizens Union, had opposed the idea of nonpartisan elections seven years ago, when Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg campaigned for it. His effort was handed a decisive defeat by voters. But in a report released on Wednesday, the group said that turnout had grown so low and elections so preordained that parties should lose their domineering power. 
Finally, the Amsterdam News published an opinion piece by Dr. Lenora Fulani this week in which she urges Councilmember Charles Barron, a newly declared independent candidate for Governor, to make nonpartisan elections for NYC a cornerstone of his campaign. 

Stay tuned for details about the next Charter hearing on July 19th and have a happy and safe 4th of July!

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