Dear President Obama,
Now that you have taken the oath of office and assumed the burdens of the presidency, people from all walks of life are asking you to do things: fix healthcare, fix the economy, end the war in Iraq, close Guantanamo, end “don’t ask dont tell,” restore America’s prestige in the world, help the middle class, improve our education system, free us from dependence on foreign oil and make us energy dependent, protect the environment, etc, etc, etc. Please don’t get me wrong. These are all important issues that you will need to address, along with so very many others. However, you can’t solve any of these problems by yourself. Even with the assistance of your Cabinet and their respective agencies, your advisers, and the millions of Federal Employess who will serve you, you will need more. The love and support of your family and friends will help, as will the prayers of this nation. But you will still need more.
During the campaign, Michele Obama, gave a speech at UCLA that, I belive, was a turning point for many Americans. It was a wake-up call. We as a people are tired of being insignificant, of being observers to our Democracy as opposed of full-fledged participants in it. We don’t need to shop. We’re tired of being isolated in our homes and communities. We need to be useful. We need to work, to help, to be a part of the solution. Michele knew this; she heard us before many of us even knew what we were crying out for. And, of course, she knows you. That is why she said the following:
Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zones. That you push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed.
Michele is a very wise woman; she has read the mood and the pulse of Americans well. You know this; perhaps that is why there were echoes of Michele’s words in your Inaugural Address. So, all I ask of you is that you continue to listen to Michele. Demand that we work and shed our cynicism. Help us to come together, Democrats and Republicans alike, to work for the good of us all. Bring us out of our isolation and lead us beyond our zones of comfort. Encourage us to be better as individuals, as citizens, and as a country. Encourage us to engage and give us the opportunities to do so. Bring about that change you promised us. We don’t want to go back to our lives as they were, uninvolved and uninformed. Give us a reason and the means not to. If you can do that, not only will you will succeed,we all will. Together, under your leadership, we can and will solve the other problems that we face now and in the future. You and we will leave our communities, our country, and our world far stronger and more secure than they are today. Together, we will set an example for our children and grandchildren to follow and pass on to future generations.
May God bless you and your family as you embark on this journey. May He give you good health and sustain you in times of stress. May He guide you as you lead us to better ourselves, to improve our lives, and to serve others. May He fill you with the gifts of the Holy Spirit:: wisdom, understanding, knowledge, counsel, piety, fortitude, and fear of the Lord. May He always be there to give you strength, courage, and consolation. May you never forget to ask for His guidance or to thank Him for his blessings. May we all do the same.
Malone, New York