I finished the letter today.
You know the letter; the one to the President of the United States.
Eight pages later, I'm exhausted.
September 3, 2009
President Barack Hussein Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20500
Dear President Obama,
I’ve never written a President before; and you may find this funny, but I have no idea where to begin.
First, if you could indulge me a bit, I think a little frame of reference is in order to help you (not that you need my help). I’m a white girl, about a year younger than you and live in the beautiful state of California. I say “girl,” but in no way think condescendingly of myself, I just find myself very young at heart, but I’m sure Michelle would slap me for saying it. Anyway, even though I’m all California girl now, I grew up on the east coast in a navy town, Newport RI.; yes, father made a career working for Uncle Sam as an officer and total, perfect gentleman.
It was a stellar childhood, much to the contrast of yours so it would seem (having ordained that opinion from what you have said in your books about yourself and your family, and taking into account information provided by your beloved media).
I am currently single and have a daughter who is about to turn thirteen. Recently challenged in finding myself without a job and weekly paycheck -- having had to get my own health insurance too, with pre-existing conditions and all, and did, rather easily and for only 232.00/mth, what I consider a bargain… but I digress. My “free time” has allowed me to turn inward for peace of mind in my quest for a new direction in life, both in finding a new career and livelihood. Surprisingly, it has also awakened my inner patriot and love of country that for all my 47 years have never felt so great.
My guess is you dismiss all of us patriots who tend to be too far right of center, because you were raised that way, raised to believe in a far more liberal view, if not further left than that, and anything less than that is considered irrelevant to the greater good and cause, thus can be ignored.
Strangely enough, I think I would like you as a person if we knew each other. You are certainly quite handsome and charismatic, as if you haven’t been told that before… I give thanks for being raised to be tolerant and accepting of all people, in all colors; and from my experience, believe wholeheartedly, that most people born after the early sixties share the abhorrence of prejudice and of racial injustice.
Of course, as with anything and everything, there are a few who spoil it for the whole, but I think that is the exception and not the rule.
It was a sad day, I thought, when you jumped into the racial fray with siding with Professor Gates without as you said real knowledge of the facts. As our new President, I hope that the experience is something you will take in with time to learn from for the sake of our future. Inciting racial tones that purely breed anger and more disconnect is not how we get to a real discussion on what issues remain as a country. And since you are the leader and all, what that means is people will follow you rather intently, so perhaps more caution could be taken, but what do I know. But not only that, you said you would be the ultimate unite’r, not divider (and by the way, the reason that you won).
Honestly, as I am teaching my own child to be tolerant and accepting and to not see color, I would hope that through this simple tack, by way of the influences of one generation to the next, we can find our way to transcend race being such a divisive issue or excuse. But this really isn’t the point I want to make with you today…
Raised in New England, the heart of America’s humble beginnings, I just wish I could feel more assured of the American spirit inside you.
I find it so disconcerting that within your first nine months of office you seem to have single handedly apologized and dismissed basic American principles and values to foreigners, attacked our Christian roots, and have put down nearly every effort of the last 100 years where America has reached out to come to the aid of people by way of food and supplies-- along with our fine military -- to help fight the injustices around the world. We are that country who comes to the rescue of those who can’t; and we have nothing to feel sorry about. It is YOU who should apologize to US for that.
Obviously pointing to reasons why our country only allows natural born citizens to run it, if you had spent more time perhaps in the mainland of America growing up, you would have been raised with a much deeper connection to the writings of our founding fathers, our culture of which you seem so indifferent about, and the Americana spirit permeating, both literally and figuratively, throughout our melting pot cities and countryside’s. You seem oblivious to all of it and in an uncomfortable way act like you don’t even care.
You see, this is the big difference of the last say fifty years, we have innocently allowed for people to come to this land of opportunity, having not required of them true assimilation and adherence to the values and attitudes and language of what makes America truly great. It is the idea of all routes melting into one that we have lost sight of, taking us off course the further we travel from our true north.
We are a REPUBLIC by design; having given birth to the Rule of Law, which today is certainly finding its share of challenges sticking to the true nature of the Constitution, while its escape from becoming a fully pliable document set to entirely unravel any day now. That isn’t a good thing. It seems SOME American people have forgotten how good they got it and how they got here in the first place, including you.
The true intentions of our framework is what needs to be taught and reminded in the hearts of Americans, and in schools; as it exemplifies the frame of reference for what we fought for and against so long ago. We don’t need a new framework, just like we don’t need a new health care system; as the foundation was laid a long time ago; and from this foundation all strength and all liberty and all freedom grows. It is simple but apparently too difficult a concept for some people to grasp; yet it is profoundly just and equalizing; all people can think and grow rich equally under the law.
And we need to look no further than your Presidency as a fine example of how successful this land is your land has grown to become; you didn’t get there by way of government interference, high taxation or being a slave to anyone, let alone an over zealous government who thinks it can take over a GM, Wall Street, Banking, Health Care, free markets, free enterprise and a free people.
You got there, like everybody else, through streets paved with gold, with purple mountains majesty, with bombs bursting in air in a land where opportunity lives and reigns, during an age when we allowed business, immigration, entitlements, and taxation to boom. Nobody was really paying attention, nor did anybody really want to stop… as it feels good living life without limits, doesn’t it.
But there is a difference between you and me and it has nothing to do with the color of our skin and that is what scares me. Putting the jigsaw pieces of your life together in what you have said, and in telling us also that who you are is found in “who you associate with” as a gauge, worries me. To be perfectly honest, I find that “who you associate with” just as disturbing as how you have publicly mischaracterize America today; and in turn have come to the conclusion that we live in very different America’s. We do not embody the same love for America, whether from her deep seated roots or from the acorn that falls; and to take it one step further, I think the way I was born and raised to love America is an entire contrast to yours -- and there in lies the difference.
I mean, explain how your background equals a true blue red blooded American? Not to discount Hawaii but you lived on an island so to speak, along with your time in Indonesia, and influenced by a family whose true heart lies somewhere else? Please explain….
How do you qualify, when you show up in public time and time again, pontificating such aversion to anything remotely American?
Explain how you would ever allow some of your Czars to take their place, any place, within the sanctity of our American government without it tearing apart the integrity of a system we hold so great and dear? How do you do that and sleep?
Okay, that may sound harsh, but you were raised on the streets of Chicago too, and considering as much, if someone like you can’t handle a few sharp tones from a girl, I would be forced to call you a sissy.
Anyway, this may seem a bit late given your sudden elevation in society but I beg of you to immerse yourself in the teachings of America’s roots. We escaped tyranny from Europe, protesting the Catholic Church, and became a safe haven for what is known as the very first Protestants. And even though we believed in a separation of church and state, the beliefs and values were interchangeable when it came to both aspects of our life and times.
IT was, and is, the belief system that gave birth to America and IT still stands today as her cornerstone, in spite of all the propaganda you spread against her. A Christian God was self-evident and everywhere in Its influence as to how our nation was created.
A perfect start would be a short read:
Charles Galloway, Christianity and the American Commonwealth.
And on a totally different level, a more contemporary, metaphysical viewpoint on living in the modern world with a heart:
Thomas Moore, The Re-Enchantment of Everyday Life
Its funny, here I am recommending books to my dear president…as if…; like you are really going to read them…oh the naïveté, that’s me… but well worth the price of admission to bring them to your attention that is for sure. I would send them to you, but as you know, I’m out of work…and you’re the millionaire in the big white house.
The books are wildly contrasting in some ways, while in other ways, link the issues we have converging in this great country today. We have lost our soul in a manner of speaking, and I’m not sure you are the one to bring about the magnitude of the change necessary, but it is well worth the call for attention and effort.
You know, your relationship with Rev. Jeremiah Wright bothered me deeply. How could this new President of ours listen to a man who, every Sunday in the pulpit, was preaching hate and anger and separation? How could this be? How could this man be his mentor of twenty years with nobody seeming to care about it? I question this still today, and would welcome the answer over a beer because I just don’t get that at all.
I am not the normal single mother, am I? I lean conservative and that in and of itself is a miracle these days (if you believe the media!). But we are a group that you, Mr. President, have an obligation to listen to. We will not go away and have every intention of making our voices heard through out your next three and half years. Oh joy for you, huh.
This is a good country. We are the kindest, most compassionate gathering of people ever brought together for the common good -- ever. I am so sorry if you feel threatened by the conservative viewpoint and philosophy and spirit; but I believe, that if left to our own vices, left without a real desire to participate actively and productively in society, and left too far left we will all surely suffer.
Our founding fathers were great thinkers and visionary men; of course it may be a hard act to follow, one that requires a higher purpose and deeper strength and true service to the public good, all of which you may not want to associate yourself with given your socialist bent and contrasting vision for America, time will tell.
We just may have a different definition on what makes a man or woman or governing body extraordinary. It is becoming increasingly clear that we just don’t have that kind of vision or foundation in our government today and haven’t had it for quite some time, and that makes for trying days ahead for all of us to be sure. Another recommendation, for all I know you may have missed an American classic, as in Emerson’s essay on Self-Reliance; for if you didn’t, I would have to wonder how this masterpiece could not have affected you deeply and down to your soul and changed your belief system entirely!
Somehow it feels like you missed the day in Social Studies teaching about the era of reformation and the conception of our brave new world; by the looks of things it would appear that Christopher Columbus has no meaning or importance to you whatsoever. But even if you were there, the reality is you were born into a family who viewed socialism, and even Marxism, as the answer to all of society’s ills; and ultimately the teachings which stuck.
Yet this family of yours couldn’t even provide you a reliable father figure and only a mother who caused you great insecurity; a childhood rooted with your own racial identity issues and naturally feelings of hate and confusion towards white people for goodness sake. I mean, are you kidding me? Just the absence of a solid father figure alone is enough, but to add the racial undertones and questions of identity, your formative years appear heart wrenching looking from the outside in. As a mother, NO child should ever have that kind of internal combat going on.
Certainly now, being a father yourself, you have wrestled with the what -if’s and experiences of your childhood and how it affected you and turned you into the man we see today, and further how it greatly affects the responsibility and influence to your own babies. Your girls seem authentic and sweet; I hope you share in my wish that our children are given every opportunity to the very best that life in America has to offer.
I realize your summer reading time is over, but another book recommendation comes to mind, Brigitte Gabriel’s, Because They Hate. For your girls, if you haven’t already, you MUST read this, it will touch you in ways you may be very surprised about and will probably make you cry (okay maybe not you, definitely Michelle, and yes, pass it on to her). Brigitte lived in our day, Mr. President, in our era, in our childhood; yet it was a very frightening one. While we enjoyed the running in sprinklers and climbing up trees, Brigitte struggled for her very life and breath. And I got news for you; her story isn’t going to happen here in my America. Sharia Law has no place next to our Constitution and will not prevail over the strength of America’s character and principles; and has no business getting special treatment as it appears today, none. Again, I digress.
We live in a different world now and all of our lives are in your hands. You are the great caretaker of not just your girls, but for all of AMERICA. Understanding how huge this is, and how my perception of how you embrace this daunting task may be so different than how it really is, I have to trust that you know what you are doing. It is a very vulnerable place to let my future be in someone else’s hands, let alone a Democrat (smiley face) but the reality is YOU are the one who’s got me, as well as our girls…
And economically, we cannot burden them with expenses we cannot afford (in both the huge debt and federal overhead) and it will be in their lifetime, not ours, that all of this will come to pass one way or the other. Doesn’t this sink in to you personally, as a father? It is a fact the top 2% cannot carry the bottom 60% forever, especially in light of the anti-capitalist environment you are creating today. Not Bush, YOU. Bush is gone-- bye-bye -- and now it’s your turn. Tag, you’re it. Give assurance to the American people that it really will be different this time; that you really can stop the madness; can you do that for us, please?
It’s probably too late to influence this next issue, as once the US mail gets this and it gets to you it will be well after the fact, but speaking of our children -- with regards to the Presidential address to our schools next Tuesday and in the future -- please bear in mind there are plenty of families who are choosing to raise their children passionately, lovingly and actively conservative. And if you choose to use tax dollars on curriculum for America’s students, it best be fair and balanced when it comes to the nation’s politics and teaching policies. But more important, our children are not a pawn, treat them with respect so they grow up strong and able bodied to make up their own minds as to which way the wind blows of their political allegiance, from one parent to another. Most of us can see through antics like this, it’s what it is, but this isn’t the kind of transparency we were all hoping for.
Not that I worry about my Savannah’s view being affected; truth be told, a family’s influence and attention to values holds greater authority than the government. You know, she has plans all the way through to the age of thirty laid out; ultimately wanting to be an architect. Please don’t punish her, as a person who could quite possibly earn a lot of money, with the burdens of caring for a mass of people who don’t deserve it; I beg of you.
Because the natural progression I assure you, as she is being raised with a good and compassionate and responsible heart, would be giving back to those in need all on her own, just as her parents do. That is how a free society works.
My Savannah is growing up in a family where we teach self-reliance and the beautiful opportunity to become whatever she wants to be without the government’s help. It can be done; stories abound with kids from the ghetto making it; immigrants coming to America through proper channels, not only making it, but thriving in it; while everyday, proof surfaces with people of all color and status rising above desperate circumstances and finding prosperity.
This is done everyday in America. And just because I usually vote conservative it is in no way, shape or form evidence that I’m a right-wing, war mongering, holding tight to our guns and religion (you regret that, I’m sure), nut job who takes advantage of the little poor people; that is sooooo yesterday. I have to hope, and pray, that the compassion found in my heart is just as good as yours and any other liberal who comes my way. We just have a totally different approach to life, which is hardly right from wrong, but warrants and demands everyone to work together. You said you were all about that, remember? You were going to be different, remember? Hello? (Again, the reason you are sitting in the Oval Office today).
Have no idea if you are still with me, but I’m almost done…
We all know the debt did not start with you, so stop being so sensitive to what the cause was, as each and every president before you had debt. We know that Bush left you with an expensive present, but you knew that going in! As did every president before! What has come to light over health care is simply an outpouring of the amount of contempt Americans have built up towards a Congress that no longer serves the people, by way of the blatant acts of out of control spending, be it bank bail outs, stimulus packages or new health care programs. The people have spoken and there are other ways to go about managing the federal government and the needs of the people.
More importantly, think of how much easier a President’s job will be after eliminating waste, fraud and programs that really don’t qualify or serve us economically, while working within the confines of a real budget and sticking to it, ultimately adding value to what we already have; it’s a beautiful thing. A family’s budget is no different than the Fed; real security is only in living within one’s means, buying only what we can afford, paying off debt and stop living on credit, while saving for a rainy day (not that it rains in California). I know this as I have many times in my life failed at this miserably.
Oooh speaking of my lovely state that reminds me, I almost forgot the issue with the smelt in our bread basket of California, you have to change that crazy environmental policy and the water must be restored -- you apparently have no idea what harm is being done in saving a silly fish with no regards to our economy and livelihood. OR maybe you do and just want the Terminator to go down in flames…
But seriously, with what is going on right now, you could look like a savior if you waltz in and do something about this (and we all know how much you like being treated like a king…come on now, that’s kind of funny). If you don’t pay attention to anything else I said in this long winded letter of exasperation, please look into the mess in California’s drought forsaken farmland that is begging for your attention, and I thank you, in advance, from the bottom of my heart and homeland.
Whether you ever see this letter will be a mystery, but I can tell you, I’m a great pen pal. And over time you will find that although this may be the first letter to a President, namely you, it will surely not be the last.
I was raised to honor my President in the patriotic spirit of America, with empathy and open heart; having also been taught that it is my obligation to speak up when something feels not quite right. This is that time for me to let my voice be heard with all due respect, Sir; it is simply a sharing of thoughts from one true American to another.
All for now, and may God bless you, Michelle, Malia and Sasha, Dear President.
Write back soon.
PS Consider this letter the next best seller on your list of reads, worthy of finding five minutes of your precious time sitting in a corner of the Rose Garden; a romantic notion, of course, but that’s how I would picture the ending turning out.
To My Dear Blogger friends....think I said too much?
Didn't really sign off with "G", but in keeping with the liabilities of the internet age, I used creative license to remove the closing name and address... you understand.