In these troubled times Americans are faced with controversial questions of citizenship, constitutionality, who can vote, and “love America or leave it.” These “troubles” trickle-down to the 23% segment of Americans living in the HOA-Land Nation comprised of independent HOA principalities.
Under these controversies the question of who is permitted to vote in public elections arises. It’s well known that eligible citizens of age, except the law breakers with a criminal record, are allowed to vote. There is no federal law against noncitizens from voting. However, no state has allowed noncitizens to vote.
Note: The following presentation takes an expansionist view of the below issues. It is educational and realistic IF state legislators, the media and the public in general are properly informed of the state of affairs in HOA-Land. As an activist advocate I am free to act. Since HOA attorneys, end even judges often take such expansionist views, why not advocates?
Who is a citizen?
This basic and fundamental question has bounced around in minutia but I’m am singularly speaking in generalities for my purpose here. Anyone residing in a state is a citizen of the US and state if he was born in America, or if born outside America one of his parent was American or naturalized. It has been long held doctrine that a citizen has duties and responsibilities under that citizenship. Jennifer Self States the obligations of a citizen quite plainly:
“A citizen is ‘a person owing loyalty to and entitled by birth or naturalization to the protection of a state or union.’ Citizenship means ‘a productive, responsible, caring and contributing member of society.’ . . . “The importance of civic responsibility is paramount to the success of democracy and philanthropy. By engaging in civic responsibility, citizens ensure and uphold certain democratic values written in the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Those values or duties include justice, freedom, equality, diversity, authority, privacy, due process, property, participation, truth, patriotism, human rights, rule of law, tolerance, mutual assistance, self-restraint and self-respect.
A natural consequence of being a citizen is losing your citizenship – be expatriated — which can be by outright renunciation, “I hereby renounce . . .”, become a citizen of another country and dual citizenship is not allowed by the current country, or by performing certain acts as defined by INA, § 349. For our purposes here, clauses that seem appropriate to HOA-Land are: (1) naturalization in a foreign country, (2) oath of allegiance to a foreign country, (4) serving in a foreign government position, and (5) formal resolution.
Do HOA members qualify as bona fide US citizens?
The first loud and clear objection to the above is that HOAs are not a foreign country However, “foreign country” is commonly defined as “any state where one is not a citizen” and includes designations of country, nation or state. I have argued that HOAs are principalities.
[HOAs are] de facto governments or principalities — political bodies unto themselves with their own laws and sovereign law-making bodies, dependent on a greater political entity for support and protection, like the Principality of Monaco in France. [HOAs are] allowed to operate and function outside the protections of the Fourteenth Amendment as if they were independent governments similar to a principality.
In 1994 Professor McKenzie wrote, “HOAs currently engage in many activities that would be prohibited if they were viewed by the courts as the equivalent of local governments.” I followed this assertion with,
The policy makers have failed to understand that the HOA CC&Rs have crossed over the line between purely property restrictions to establishing unregulated and authoritarian private governments. CC&Rs are a devise for de facto HOA governments to escape constitutional government.
Failure to reaffirm US citizenship
It is quite clear that the creation of HOAs with their legal structure as private contractual agreements was and is intentional, and sucessionist. An opportunity to reaffirm their US citizenship by amending their CC&Rs, and by sponsoring state bills to require a reaffirmation of being subject to the Constitution, was presented in 2012.
Therefore, the members of the association, having not waived or surrendered their rights, freedoms, privileges and immunities as citizens of the United States under Section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment, and as citizens of the state within which they reside, the CC&Rs or Declaration for any planned community, condominium association or homeowners association shall state that, or be amended to comply,
The association hereby waivers and surrenders any rights or claims it may have under law and herewith unconditionally and irrevocably agrees 1) to be bound by the US and State Constitutions, and laws of the State within which it is located, as if it were a subdivision of the state and a local public government entity, and 2) that constitutional law shall prevail as the supreme law of the land including over conflicting laws and legal doctrines of equitable servitudes.
This opportunity has been met with complete apathy and silence. The mindset and political sentiment of HOA members reveals a disregard for the Constitution and our democratic system of government.
Accepting the above that an HOA is a principality and a foreign country for the purposes of citizenship, then it follows that HOA members have lost their US citizenship as a result of an oath of allegiance to the HOA by means of the CC&Rs (clause (1) above) and by implied formal resolution (clause (5) above}. Officers and directors are also subject to clause (4) above.
Having lost their US citizenship, HOA members are not entitled to vote in public elections as prohibited by state law as stated in paragraph 2 above.
Open discussion and distribution are invited. Speak your mind.
 George K. Staropoli, Establishing the New America of Independent HOA Principalities, StarMan Publishing, LLC (Amazon, 2008).
 Supra n.2.
 Evan McKenzie, Privatopia: Homeowners Associations and the Rise of Residential Private Governments, (Yale Univ. Press, 1994).
 George K. Staropoli, CC&Rs are a devise for de facto HOA governments to escape constitutional government, HOA Constitutional Government (Jan. 18, 2015).
 George K. Staropoli, HOA member Declaration of US and State citizenship, HOA Constitutional Government (Nov. 2012).