New Yorican Girl Word Press
When the President of the United States won his second term in office in 2012, he
promised again that immigration reform would be at the top of his agenda.
It was then that I understood it was now or never for my 28th Amendment
petition campaign. Strongly believing that if the president truly wanted to
champion all Hispanics, then surely he could no longer allow the
disenfranchisement of the more than 2 million eligible voters in Puerto Rico –
legal Hispanic American citizens – from equal voting rights at the same time
that he was vowing to solve the nation’s illegal immigration crisis.
I also felt like I was running out of time because my cousin, Jesus, the
one who’d inspired the petition and had become like a father to me, was
going to be ninety years old soon. All he wanted was to vote just one time in
the real election for the president of his country before he made his way to
Heaven. Sure, his country allowed him to vote in presidential primaries, but
what sense did that make if he remained banned from casting a vote in the
general election when it really mattered?
If the U.S. Congress had found a way to pass the 23rd Amendment giving the
residents of Washington, D.C. (citizens not living in a viable state of the Union) the
right to vote for the President of the United States, well then, why hadn’t this
same inclusive logic been considered – at least, debated – for the benefit of our
fellow legal Hispanic Americans living in Puerto Rico?