By Amanda Zheranova
Updated 07:43 AM CT, Monday March 23, 2015
Editor’s Note: Amanda is a Grade 12 high school student from Houston, Texas.
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.
(EP) — Hello, Mr. or Madam President-Elect, my name is Amanda, a 17-year old high school kid from Houston, Texas. As a citizen interested in public policies and how they affect the lives of the common man, there are certain things that I will need you to do for us before your first 100-days in office runs through.
I do not know whether you will be a Democrat or a Republican. I do not really care. I only want the best man or woman for our country. And since the American people have chosen you, I accept that you are the best we have to lead our nation for the next four year.
If you are a Republican, please do not repeal Obamacare. Since it was passed into law and became operational, my mother, who is a single parent has been able to afford health insurance for our household. I am the oldest in a family of four including my mom. As we are all under the age 26, my brothers and I are covered under our mom’s insurance. And that is a good thing. Of course I watch television and I listen to political debates. From my analysis, there are some good prescriptions in the law and there are also some prescription in it that are not well thought-out. Rather than repeal the law, please work with Congress to review some of those aspects of the law that adversely affects small businesses and the little man and then pass a compromise appendage healthcare law to complement the already good things in Obamacare. If you repeal the law and we return to the status quo before the law was passed, we will lose our health insurance and you would lose your legitimacy as the president of all Americans.
If you are a Democrat, please do something about welfare. It is a good thing that we have programs such as food stamps to help people who are going through some hard times in their life until they find their feet. But what is not fair to taxpayers and hardworking people like my mom is when other adults make a career of living off of food stamps and refuse to better themselves. I will want you to reform the food stamp program and put a cap on the number of months a person can be on the program. It is also necessary to require people who are on the program to do some community service work at least once every week for the duration of time they are receiving the benefits. And finally on this issue, I will want you to make it difficult for someone who have already received the benefit to be able to receive it again without a proof to show that she had made an attempt to get a job, go to school, or improve her life in one way or the other. When people have a sense that government will always hand out benefits to them to subsidize the irresponsible lifestyle they choose to live, the incentive to work to supplement the life they are living zeroes out.
If you are a Republican, it is likely that you are a man. A white man. And being a man, I know you are a father. As a father, you are enthused at the idea that your son will one day grow up to walk on your footsteps and hopefully succeed where you have failed in life. Through your guidance, of course. That feeling is not native to you or white men alone. That is every father’s desire including African-American fathers. So I implore you that you work with Congress to pass a law to outlaw the killings of African-American men and teenagers all over the country by police officers. To us whites, they are just another data. But a time will come when it will blow up on the face of this country and undermine our greatness if nothing drastic is done about it. Segregation was outlawed. It was done while a white man was in the White House. Civil Rights Act was passed into law. A son of the south for that matter signed it into law. Outlawing extrajudicial killings of African-American men in this 21st century jet age is far easier to do. You have your precedents. Do it!!!
If you are a Democrat, please legalize marijuana and please do not only put an end to the practice of sending people to jail for possessing marijuana, but pretty please order your attorney general to release every man in jail that is in there for the sole reason of possession of marijuana. That is not a crime that merits American future rotting away in jail. Majority of the people in jail on the account of possession of marijuana are of course, Black men. And obviously, America does not consider Black youths its future. But Obama is president. And he won it. Both times! And so will the next kid on the block. America need ALL of its youth in the classroom and in the workforce. White men joke on TV and write in their memoirs about how they experimented with drugs, but Black men end up in jail for it. Please reverse the trend.
If you are a Republican, please do not take the country to another war. I cannot remember the last time a Republican was president and the economy was good. Not with Bush 41. Neither with Bush 43. Whether we will have Bush 45 is something that I do not know, but if we do, please Jeb, be different. We spent billions of dollars executing the Iraqi war. That money wisely spent could have rebuilt out bridges, modernized our airports, funded research and developments, and afforded scholarships for our posterity. But it was wasted in Iraq and greedy corporations who are only interested in their wallets profiteered from the spoils. No more war. I want our economy to reclaim from the Chinese its revered position as the largest economy in the world. Please consolidate on the gains the Obama Administration has made so far.
When Barack Obama was elected as the 44th President and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces of the United States of America, he did not set out to repeal every law passed under his Republican predecessor’s administration. He consolidated on the gains President Bush made on recovering the economy and continued with almost all of President Bush’s national security programs. To exemplify that governance is about continuity irrespective of the new political party in power, he even retained some of his predecessor’s cabinet members.
Governance is about the country. It is not about any individual. Whether you like the outgoing president or not, whether you dislike the color of his skin or not, those does not count in the scheme of things. What counts is lifting the country to a new height. What counts is inspiring the country to believe in its future and to convince the country that the future is bright. What counts is your fresh ideas to continue to build up and never to tear down.
I know I said I did not care whether it is a Democrat or a Republican that wins the 2016 presidential election. Of course I do not care. I am not a political party freak. But I know a man who I know will continue to build on the enormous gains the Obama administration has made on the economy. A natural leader. A seasoned diplomat. A man whose love for America is beyond question. A man who can bring both white America and black America; rich and poor together. A man that is not divisive. A reputable honest man whose love and fight for the common man is well known. He is the embodiment of the Edward Kennedy and Elizabeth Warren of America. A charmer, a people person who is well loved and respected across the political aisle. A veteran senator who represented his state for 36 years in the U.S. Senate and served in the trio of the Armed Services, Foreign Relations, and Judiciary committees of the Senate. A father, a husband, a brother, and a loyal friend. The personification of both resolute and soft-power America.
America, I give you Vice President Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr., the 47th and current Vice President of the United States and the 45th President and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces of the United States of America…