Don’t let opportunity for change slip away
I am hearing a lot from those opposed to holding a constitutional convention because they fear the delegates will be dominated by sitting legislators determined to strengthen their hold on political power.
At the last convention in 1967, only 7 percent of the delegates were sitting legislators. Former legislators and judges made up 13 percent, local officials and party leaders also served, and all these comprised a sizeable number of political groups for sure. But 23 percent of the delegates were citizens interested in public service, the very kind of individuals we want to undertake a task of such significance.
So, if you are a citizen concerned about the quality of the convention delegates, become a delegate. Pick up a petition, get the required signatures and run for the position. And when you are elected, make our antiquated, incomprehensible, unworkable, five-volume tome a document that will make us proud to live in New York State.
This is our once-in-20-year opportunity to make New York work better for everyone, including the sitting legislators. Let’s not allow this opportunity to pass us by again.