Dear President Obama,

You’re probably very tired. I know I would be if I were you. You have had to stand in the White House Press Briefing room and share condolences with too many families, communities, and towns. You urge Congress to act, and you promote sensible gun control legislation to no avail. Willie Geist put it best this morning on MSNBC: if 20 6 year olds did not move Congress to act, nothing will. Today, people are fighting about the gunman’s causation, they are fighting about next steps, they are fighting about freedoms, and bathrooms, and continue to try to legislate love. I don’t agree with you on everything, it would be weird if I did. Too many citizens seek a politician that matches them perfectly and can get elected. That doesn’t exist. But, I empathize with the struggle you have endured with Congress, the media and the American people for the past eight years, yet I can never fully understand it. I am a 28 year old straight white woman who voted for Bernie. I know nothing about the struggles of a biracial man who holds the highest office of our country and is the leader of the free world.

I write to you because I woke up this morning feeling the weight of yesterday’s tragedy on my shoulders. I work in student affairs on a college campus, and thankfully, students have left campus for the summer. Don’t get me wrong, I love my job. Oftentimes, my office becomes a space for discussing current events and I am usually happy to host, but I don’t know that I have any more words; of comfort, of explanation, of rationality. Today would have been even harder than it was if the students had still been on campus. I advise our student government and this year I helped them to draft a statement of equality and social justice. It was important to them to make a statement after Mizzou and other campus incidents, but even these young adults squabbled for weeks over the wording. If college students are supposed our future, I am trying my best to prepare them to be good citizens and more importantly, good humans. I no longer have faith in Congress, but I have faith in them. Certainly, you can relate.

I apologize for the delay in reaching my point but here it is.  Please don’t stop fighting. For sensible gun control legislation. For our disenfranchised communities. For future generations. I know the clock is ticking on your Presidency, but please don’t give up.  Your persistence in the face of terrible discrimination is what provides hope for those of us who are working for a better future. Your persistence is admirable. And while I truly believe that future historians will “tell your story” well and kindly, please remember that our new favorite playwright reminds us that “history has its eyes on you….” You have done so much for this country and I just hope that you keep fighting until your very last day in office. America needs you to lead. Thank you for answering the call. Ribbon LGBT

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#IBelieveinBernie

or “Why the 27 year old women wants to vote for the old white guy from Vermont.”

I am not enrolled in a political party. I am usually moderately leaning left. I hate the political party system that we have in the US of A. I hate that it costs millions and millions of dollars to run for political office, specifically when you are trying to land in the oval-shaped one.

I want a woman president as much as the next feminist, but I don’t want Hillary. I don’t want Hillary because she is part of the system; she is part of the problem.  When you start seeing the same names over and over in the office of power that is called a monarchy, not a democracy. Now instead of just a two-party system, we are moving towards a two-family system: Clinton and Bush. Can we not find a candidate that is not a part of those two family trees?

Now that is not the only reason I support Bernie Sanders. I actually believe in his campaign and what he stands for, mostly because I actually know what he stands for. He doesn’t pander, he doesn’t waffle.  He stands behind his convictions and is willing to challenge his colleagues to real conversations and dialogue. And no, I don’t agree with him on everything, but I don’t think you can ever really find a candidate that you can agree with 100%.

However, I am realist and I unfortunately know that this game show is rigged.  Unless something dramatically changes in the next year and a half and we have a major grassroots movement in this country, Bernie Sanders will never make it out of the primaries, he won’t be able to raise enough money. He won’t be able to raise enough money because the people who believe in him are too poor to donate to his campaign.  They are the recent college grads and the dwindling, blue-collar, middle class folks, and the environmentalists who likely aren’t making any money. And that is the saddest part of all, because the elections are not really in the hands of the voters, they are in the hands of the lobbyists and billionaires who can afford to pay for lawn signs and air time. It’s all very absurd.

And so, once again, I know I may be selecting a losing candidate.  I know I am backing the underdog. But, I am hoping beyond hope that this time is different. That this time my generation gets off its ass and gets to the polls and makes an informed decision. I am hoping that Americans realize that politics as usual is going to give us “results” as usual. I am hoping that people realize that we should leave the religious teachings to the rabbis, preachers, priests, and imams. I am hoping that voters realize that scientists should be trusted, not censored. I am hoping that Americans realize that we deserve better and that Bernie Sanders could be that candidate.

And so I will support the Sanders campaign however I can, until he is sitting in that oval room or until he has withdrawn his candidacy. But I refuse to jump onto a campaign just because that candidate is the front-runner.  Being the front-runner doesn’t necessarily mean you are the right person for the job, it usually just means your donors’ pockets are deeper.

#IBelieveinBernie #Sanders2016