Dear Mayoral candidates running in Palermo’s next election:
After my being awarded a university degree in civil engineering, for work reasons, I have been moving all around Europe. I’ve been living in Brussels, Paris, and London, just to mention a few cities.
I don’t think of myself as an emigrant, but a roving professional who has never planted permanent roots anywhere because of my love of Sicily. I am a Sicilian who cannot forget his motherland , one who works abroad hoping and dreaming that on one wonderful day, I’ll return to my beloved isle.
Today on the social media, as yesterday in town squares, I read about a new Palermo, a different, cleaner, a kind of Sicilian Barcelona (Catalonia). Candidates are promising a new diplomacy for the young, well:
The old diplomacy has outraged one generation and is running the danger of outraging future ones more, and even affecting our brothers and sisters who are abroad. For example, I have married a non Sicilian, and we have two children. My wife, because of the Sicilian politics, refuses to live or settle in Sicily.
I am aware of the list of problems that remain to be solved in Sicily and, in particular, in Palermo are extensive and often based upon other factors independent of Sicily. There is, however, one problem which can be confronted and resolved in Palermo. This problem is the disgusting filth and the garbage blanketing the city!
I would like to challenge and make a bet with Palermo’s mayoral candidates in order to give the city a makeover , convert it into a new, modern city, make it more dynamic, more European, indeed “A cool city”. The bet evolves from the question that I pose: Are you willing to clean the city starting from the streets?
1) A pizza by saying that nobody will answer these questions, because I cannot contribute one vote to your elections.
2) My relocation in Palermo will occur if the new mayor besides keeping the promise to clean the city also introduces a concrete plan to keep his promises.
I am not looking for work. I will bring home my own work! I only ask for me and in the name of the citizens that live in Palermo, to keep the city clean.
If you are not interested in my coming back, nor in the return of many other “emigrants”, or as you call them “brain drain”, then don’t put your messages on the social networks about the people who have left Sicily and Palermo for a thousand bad reasons! Do not fool us with promises of employment and revitalization of the city.
If you are serious about benefitting this city, I assure you that as far as I’m concerned, you will add four new identity cards . There is also the strong possibility that many others will decide to return home. The new mayor will have the honor of officially signing documents welcoming back those families who still believe in Palermo and in Sicily.
I can work in any city in Europe, but would like to come back to Palermo. As I said, my wife, as well as many foreigners, are horrified by the filth of Palermo. In most cities, even the poor ones that I’ve visited, one does not see the extensive decay which one can see in some Palermo’s streets. It hurts to see that! In conclusion, tell me if you plan to make these necessary changes. Tell me how you are going to do it, and I will be back.
If you know how to clean-up, refurbish, and revitalize Palermo ,and can handle the job, nobody will lose. All of us win!
I am reminded of the ancient, Native American(American Indian) proverb:
“Treat the earth well.
It was not given to you by your parents.
It was loaned to you by your children.
We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors,
we borrow it from our children.”