My name is Joan Marc, I’m 38 and I’m a Spanish citizen. I have been lucky to make friends of many nationalities and faiths. I consider Germans, Syrians or Chinese the same way I consider Spanish people, for me we are all world citizens and we should have the same rights and obligations.
I live in a country where democracy is in serious trouble. The big political parties are looting the country with the connivence and even cooperation of the judiciary, the banks and the big corporations. More and more people lose their jobs and salaries are being cut whereas fiscal fraud and tax evasion are barely being prosecuted.
In current circumstances I don’t mind that decisions on the future of the country are taken outside my country, especially when they happen in places with stronger democratic record such as Germany. However, I do mind that the people that take decisions about the future of my country are not being accountable to me, and the other Spanish citizens who will suffer the consequences of their decisions.
This is why I’m happy to be given the opportunity to vote in the German elections, not because this solves the problem of democracy in my country but because it helps to highlight the limitations of the current democratic system. I’ve read that the campaign for these German elections is the most boring since 1949. Well, if suffrage would be really universal–i.e. all who will be directly affected by the result of it would be allowed to run for elections and vote- I’m sure the elections will look a lot more fun and appealing.
I hope soon we can have European and world institutions that allow citizen participation so that we can stop having unelected bodies such as the European Commission or the IMF or bodies elected by other people such as the German government taking decisions that affect people who have not been given the chance to elect them.
Of course, the solution is not to allow Spanish citizens to vote in German elections but rather create a true European and global democracy: An EU with an elected and legitimate government and appropriate tools of citizen participation and a United Nations Parliamentary Assembly. However, as long as we can’t elect European and global institutions, participating in the German elections is the best way to highlight the current democratic deficit in Spain, Germany, Europe and the world.