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SpearWolf

To My Father

Dad,

I don't know how much you'll listen to me or care, but I want to try to tell this to you, because it's important to me.

Just a few years ago, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, and didn't really care. I just played games and had no goals, dreams, plans, or anything. But in 2008, I felt enamored in the electrifying debates happening at home, online, on TV, and everywhere else. I became intensely interested in politics, and as of now, I have close to fifty books on my bookcase, about half of which are about political topics. More importantly, I found out what I wanted to do with my education, and this fall, I will be taking classes on the judicial branch and the 2012 election.

I don't know exactly why or what got me into it so much and how I got to care so much about it. All I know is that right now, I really do want to do what I feel is best not only for myself, but for other people. I want to help others, even for no benefit to myself, and that is a big drive in my current interest in and studies of my college major.

When I voted for Obama, I didn't do it because anyone else told me to, I didn't do it simply because it was what most people my age did, or because my brother voted for him, or for any other similar reason. I did it because I read articles online and researched his positions, compared them to McCain's, and determined that McCain would be too similar to the Bush that everyone hated, whereas Obama at least was not Dubya.

I want to lay out some things that are important to me, and as your son, hopefully are also important to you, and also things that you should care about on your own.

First, immigration. I know that is a very important topic for you, among others. Recently, Obama signed an executive order would exempt some young children of illegal immigrants from immediate deportation, as well as college students, and allow them to get worker's permits that must be renewed every two years – an important aspect of this order is it doesn't allow for a path of citizenship, it only gives them a work permit, at least as far as I am aware. He wanted to make, but failed to get passed, a law that would create a path to citizenship for immigrants without a violent criminal record to by getting an education, doing community service, and/or serving in the military – this proposed law was known as the DREAM Act. In contrast, Romney has said he was against the executive order that Obama signed, usually saying that it complicated a “long-term solution,” even though he also said he would veto the DREAM Act, the only good comprehensive immigration reform proposed in recent times. Meanwhile, Obama has deported more illegal immigrants in his first term than Bush had done in his entire eight years. Obama wants to create a legal path to citizenship that would allow bright, young, intelligent people to enter the country; the kind of people who might spur the economy by creating new businesses, being good teachers, etc., while cracking down much harder than Bush ever did on illegal immigration. Compare that to Romney, who essentially has said he would do nothing.

The next most important thing I know you care about is marijuana legalization. It's true that Obama has been pretty terrible on this, with all of his crackdowns on state medicinal marijuana facilities. Romney is not any better, though. I know this will take awhile to type up in a computer, but if you can, please get to one and type this in: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vklb9Wed8B4 If you can't get to a computer to watch this, I will summarize. It is a video of Romney being approached by a man, disabled in a wheelchair due to a muscle disease, who says he has tried every prescription medication he's been given. They make him sick, do not help his medical problems, and that only medical marijuana has helped him, yet Romney just bluntly states that he does not support medical marijuana (or any form of legalization of it). The point is that since both candidates fail on this issue, it isn't one you should vote on, because you're not winning on it either way.

The last issue I know that is probably among the most important to you is war and the military. Obama has officially ended the Iraq War, he made plans to wind down and eventually exit Afghanistan, and has been resistant to aggression to Iran. Romney called Obama's withdrawl from Iraq an “astonishing failure,” he criticized Obama for planning to pull troops out of Afghanistan beginning in 2014, and has said he is open to the idea of military action in Iran over their nuclear program, even though the Supreme Leader of Iran has said that nuclear weapons “are a sin.” Also, this is interesting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCY30FXgLVY Apparently, Iran only might have nuclear weapons, and only maybe in five years. It's also worth noting that, other than paranoid propaganda you might hear on Fox News or CNN and the like, there are no actual records decisively proving that they are indeed making or intending to make nuclear weapons. If you don't want more needless war that costs trillions of dollars for no reason, Romney is not your man.

Those are the main issues I know you'd probably care for, and there are many more you'd care to hear, but that would make this letter to big (random example: Romney does not support labor unions like the one you used to work in [the carpenter's union], Obama does), but there's more to this letter than that. There are things that are important to me.

I have never had health insurance in my life, but with the Supreme Court's ruling that the Affordable Care Act is constitutionally legal, by 2014, I may indeed get some. The law says that if you make less than 35,000 a year, you can get subsidized, essentially meaning I would get free health insurance. If you make more than 35,000 and you choose not to buy health insurance, only in that case would a person be subjected to a tax for not buying any insurance. The law does many other things: it gives the FDA power to approve more generic cheaper drugs; decreases the cost of drugs through Medicare; bans insurance companies from denying insurance to those with pre-existing conditions (such as Mom's history of cancer, or your bad back, or Wes' diabetes – not that any of that matters since all of you already get public health insurance through medicaid and medicare, but since I don't and you all would be counted in my family's medical history, it is important for me); prohibits insurance companies from issuing a “lifetime limit” that when reached, the insurance would no longer cover for anything; allows people to stay on their parents' health insurance plans until age 26; bans insurance companies from dropping people once they get sick and puts limits on how much and how often they can raise their prices; they must tell customers on receipts what the costs are for in detail (they cannot hide it simply under “administrative fees” [i.e. their payrolls]); raises taxes by 0.9% for those making over $200,000 annually; prohibits insurance companies from charging women more than men for the exact same coverage plans; bans annual spending caps on insurance; gives small businesses tax credits to help them provide employees with insurance, while also mandating that businesses with over 50 employees insure them or pay a tax; a tax on pharmaceutical companies; makes it so that insurance companies must spend 80% of the money paid into premiums for actual healthcare costs; and allows states to come up with their own alternatives to the Affordable Care Act if they do not wish to participate in it, but only if it covers, at minimum, just as many people and just as effectively as what the ACA would have. And much more.

The other major thing that's important to me is, as uncomfortable as it may make you to read this, gay rights. No matter how little we talk about it, no matter how much you avoid the conversation, it's not going away, and I'm not going to stop, because I am not able to do so. Obama has openly said that he personally supports my right to marry anyone of my choosing. He ordered the Justice Department to stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act in courts, a law that allows states to ban gay marriage, to ignore gay marriages that were legal in other states, and also denies gay couples who do manage to get married in a state that allows it any and all benefits that the federal government gives to everyone else who are married (example: inheritance taxes for when your spouse dies and you inherit their wealth is higher for gay couples, because they do not get any tax reductions that straight couples get; it also  causes many legally married gay couples who serve in the military to be denied medical and financial benefits that they'd normally get, and so on). He also repealed Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Romney supported Don't Ask, Don't Tell, and has said he does not support gay marriage or civil unions that “have the same rights and benefits” as straight marriage. It is worth noting that Nevada has a domestic partnership law, allowing gay couples in your state to receive some limited benefits. I know these aren't things that you care about, but I care about them deeply.

I know that you and Mom had voted for Kerry and that he had lost to Bush, and after that, you had stopped voting and gave up on the system. I know that Bush screwed up the economy, had wars in the middle east that no one wanted, and had done countless other things that I didn't understand or know about until more recent years. Obama's message that he ran was basically not being Bush. My vote this year won't matter, Oklahoma is guaranteed to go to Romney, and I will vote only in protest. Mom's in even worse shape: she literally can't vote because of the Voter ID law in Oklahoma. Nevada, in contrast, is a swing state, and Obama won it in 2008. Your vote, unlike mine, isn't a worthless vote. It might make a difference. I'm not happy with everything Obama has done – he should've pushed for a public option or single-payer healthcare system, not a private insurance mandate; he should've tried harder to legalize marijuana instead of continuing the worthless war on drugs; he should've filed criminal lawsuits against the people on Wall Street who caused the recession (but at least he signed the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which while didn't do enough, at least limited banks and Wall Street a little, whereas Romney has said corporations are people). Still, the facts are undeniable. Unemployment has fallen under Obama, federal spending is down, illegal immigrants are being deported more while being given more legal alternatives, more people than ever have health insurance, he protected the Pell Grant that provides people like me with thousands of dollars to go to college that Republicans wanted to destroy and is pushing to keep the Republicans from doubling the interest rate on student loans, he has been about as anti-war as you could realistically hope for from a politician, and he is a lot damn better than Romney could ever be.

I'm begging for you to register to vote, and do the right thing when your moment of truth comes.

Your son,

John
Viewed: 71 times
Added: 6 years, 4 months ago
 
Thanatos
6 years, 4 months ago
HAD I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

-Yeats
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
*Snoggles.* Talk to me more often! =o
Thanatos
6 years, 4 months ago
You should link this on twitter hun. More people need to read these words.
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
I don't have a Twitter, but you can feel free to repost it anywhere you like.
Rem
Rem
6 years, 4 months ago
The importance of making your voice heard is immeasurable. Even when you feel like you are only one person, every voice is priceless and worth the world. Heh, I only recently realized this when you convinced me to call my Senators. I always felt lethargic and dismissive when it came to voting and politics. As if a tiny ant like me didn't matter. But thanks to you, I changed and feel a lot more empowered and enthusiastic about raising my voice and taking a stand for what is best for this country and especially its people.

So thank you, honestly.

I hope your message gets through.
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
Thanks for the comment! *Kisses and squeezes.* I'm glad I made you feel that way, it makes me blush. I hope I convince him, too, since my dad's vote might actually matter. Either way, I feel pretty accomplished and proud for writing this out so well and everything.
Rem
Rem
6 years, 4 months ago
*kiss* No worries, meant every word.

Yeah you should, heh. Your journals are always the most interesting and thought provoking on here (or anywhere for that matter).
Scorpiious
6 years, 4 months ago
This is good, needed to be said. You've made good clear points.
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
Thank you. =)
Scorpiious
6 years, 4 months ago
You are welcome.
Shokuji
6 years, 4 months ago
https://inkbunny.net/journalview.php?id=44250

I hope lots of people read this.
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
Aw, thanks! You didn't have to, but I really appreciate it. =)
DonutGalaxy
6 years, 4 months ago
Well..Atleast you're trying for everyone,well you dad,but you get it.
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
I hope I get through to him. I thought a few others might like or benefit from the journal, so I thought what the heck and posted it here, too. =) *Huggles.* Maybe it'll help a few people.
DonutGalaxy
6 years, 4 months ago
My dad..I can't get through to him. He...um...abandoned...me i guess you can say. Which i don't care because i've made it just fine with out the son of a bitch. *huggles backz*  ^ᴥ^
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
Wow, abandoned you? =x I sympathize, probably not exactly the same experiences, but my father's always been distant. Usually doesn't help pay for things when he's here, and he's been gone more often than not in other states on various things like get-rich-quick schemes that never work, or just to get away from having to pay around the house, etc. He's not a very good father, really, but I guess I want to try to find what good I can from him.
DonutGalaxy
6 years, 4 months ago
My dad just a total dick. A snobby,selfish,head-up-his-own-ass dick.
Nick2Shy
6 years, 4 months ago
what you do here is way too rare, forming an oppinion on facts, not on rumors and propaganda and explaining them in a great  and partly touching way
doesn't mean anything but you've impressed me and I hope your dad and others who read this will understand and/or realize these things
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
*Nuzzles.* Thank you for the comment! I'm glad you liked the journal, I hope others do as well.
Norithics
6 years, 4 months ago
This election is a bitter pill for many, not least of all myself.

I'm politically savvy, not just on issues, but on the mannerisms of politicians. I knew going in that Mr. Obama would have to walk a very fine rope, the likes of which few Presidents ever have. But the scope of this has changed demonstrably.

He knew he couldn't get Single Payer healthcare. I knew that, and most sensible people did. He did the next best thing, which was create a trap that would later enable that to be triggered. He didn't insist we buy the small car, he just painted the road lines closer together. A lot of people don't like that he couldn't get this, but I think he did as good a job as he could've.

Obama's becoming known as the Drone President. This practice is chilling and gives me nothing but bad feelings, at the same time that I know it's infinitely more sensible and cost-effective than a ground war. Still, the intelligence departments need to be improved drastically if this is ever to be more than an extension of our image as a terrifying police state.

Equal rights for gays are coming, they're inevitable. He was responsible for changing the tone, and skipped us ahead quite a bit. We're being played for political points, yes, but everyone does.

Citizens United is the biggest travesty to happen to our already money-addled political system. In a time where our infrastructure is crumbling, unions are weak, and the middle class is getting erased, corporations and private billionare donors want to spend as much as they like without ever being disclosed, to ensure the rest of us never get a voice.

In the end, President Obama will get my vote. But if it came to him personally, I would write on the back:
"We don't need Clinton, we need Roosevelt- Franklin and Theodore. Stop compromising our future away."
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
I read and heard that they could've pushed for something better than the private insurance mandate by some special action. I think it was reconciliation? That would supposedly let them bypass a filibuster without needing 60 votes, but it seemed like a pretty complicated procedure, so I'll stop talking about that before I misspeak and make myself look retarded.

The drones are pretty bad, we've killed tons of innocent civilians with them. It's better (at least for us) than using ground troops, but what'd be best is not having uneccessary wars to begin with. The fact that there's a growing urge towards isolationism and to simply not deal with other nation's problems probably compounds massively with the feeling that the drones are no good. A good start on improving intelligence is not continuing the policy of bombing targets that we haven't confirmed to be militants, and to stop counting them as such until proven innocent after death.

Yeah, he probably danced around gay rights for political reasons, since he used to support gay marriage, stopped, then went back to supporting it. I'll take what I can get, though. He's helped more on the gay rights issue than any other, pretty much.

Did you hear the Monday decision to uphold Citizens United? >=| CU's definitely the worst court ruling in our lifetime. After that, I was not looking forward to the health care ruling. I had almost lost all my faith in this country's future right there. If they can spend all the money they want to buy politicians, then it'll be impossible to have Congress approve an amendment to undo Citizens United, and I don't really think constitutional conventions are realistic for much the same reason - corporations and rich individuals will simply spend money in every state to discourage such an action. I still honestly think that it can't be undone, except through total luck by getting enough liberal justices in the Supreme Court and crossing your fingers in hope that they correct themselves. That reason alone is enough to make me vote for Obama, since Ginsburg is older than dirt and didn't have the foresight to retire earlier in Obama's first term when Democrats had a much better hold on Congress.

Can I be the next FDR? =D *Hugs you!* Thanks for commentin'.
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
Adding this and this so that people can see that, at the time of the health care debates before the law was passed, even Republicans supported a public option by a slim majority of 51%, along with 57% of the overall public. The actual relevancy of this may be subject to scrutiny given the previous statements of me and Norithics, but I thought they were pretty funny/awesome facts nonetheless!
ArcticWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
You should be proud of what you have done. You already know how I feel and what I think on the political issues so I will just say a little on the letter itself and why you have moved me.

People become disconnected with their parents and often do not care what they do so long as it keeps them safe. Often this becomes a near estrangement.

You have made a letter that is pleading both to the anonymous stranger and for someone very personal in your family.
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
Arf!
ArcticWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
*Snog*
DinHusky
6 years, 4 months ago
*huggles and nuzzles, smiling at you*
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
*Nibbles and slobbers all over you while cuddling.* =3
Littilwood
6 years, 4 months ago
I skipped out on voting. I just grew up with people trying to shove words in my mouth, and even still it seems hard to trust people on issues regarding anything. I really dislike getting into political arguments, and it isn't something that I plan on getting involved with. So many people turning around and complaining that the country is screwed up because people voted for the wrong person. I understand the issues and some I agree with, others I don't. But I'd rather not get into the whole "you voted for this person" thing. For that reason, I don't vote. It seems like a lot of effort and bs to take, for something that may just create more issues. Idk.
SpearWolf
6 years, 4 months ago
For Oklahoma, it's kind of pointless to vote either way. OK hasn't swung to a Democrat since LBJ, and before that not since Truman. In 2008, Obama didn't even bother campaigning here because he knew he couldn't win - and McCain didn't bother campaigining here because he knew he couldn't lose! Voting in liberal or conservative states for presidential elections is largely a waste of time either way, because the state is nearly guaranteed to go one way or the other, and it's mostly a winner-takes-all with the electoral college delegates. Until they get rid of that, it doesn't matter if you vote unless it's in a swing state. Kind of long-winded, but I'm explaining that I don't really blame you (or anyone) outside of one of those swing states for not voting. I still think people should, but that's my personal preference. I prefer to be taken down kicking and screaming in protest rather than laying down in shame like a dying dog in the case of a failure, or to merely make a public gesture to state my principles and beliefs in the case of a victory.

As for the actual points elsewise you wanted to make, I simply think it's important to talk about with people. I want to try to ensure a better future for myself, my friends, and my family, and I feel like this is a pretty good approach in making that attempt. I don't like getting into arguments of any kind either, and no matter who you vote for, you won't agree with anyone 100% of the time except for yourself, but I don't feel like that's a good enough reason to not try at all. There's a bellcurve, a degree of potential improvement, and I want to get as much into that range of improvement as I can, to strive for a more perfect union, always approaching perfection, yet never quite getting there.
Littilwood
6 years, 4 months ago
That's just the issue. When you've got parties going against one another, it really doesn't matter who the best candidate is. The party system was never meant to happen, and it shouldn't have. I don't vote because, regardless of who you vote for, as long as you are labelled into a party, you'll vote for the guy banging his head against a tree for fun, versus the guy that's actually talking about fixing issues, with plans ready to be put into effect. And it's all because this guy is in YOUR party.

I swear, if one party jumped up and said "Hey, our country is fucked! Let's fix this shit!" The other party would jump right up and go "Fuck that idea, because your party suggested it!"

Thing is, Obama could have come to Oklahoma. Compared to all the other dip-shits running, he's about the best we are gonna get, even if he didn't do a great job his first 4 years. I'd vote for him, simply because I'm afraid to see what will happen if any of these other jack-offs get in.

My point is, why waste a vote? I wanna vote for the person that is really concerned with standing up and fixing things. I DON'T wanna get stuck having to vote for the "best-of-the-worst," and so far, this is the case... AGAIN...

Voting should be about electing the person that is going to benefit our country the most, not the person we know is gonna fuck it up, but fuck it up the least of the group of candidates. It's pathetic that we are stuck with that choice, yet there are so many other people that actually care about our country, but would never get in because electoral college picks the winners, even if the general public is 95% against their decision. (Example, Bush vs Kerry - Three recalls, and Kerry won the first two, Bush won the third. Public voted for Kerry, Electoral college wanted Bush, so they were gonna recount until the results went in W's favor... That's how bad it is.)

All of our combined votes don't mean shit if the electoral college wants it the other way around.
Littilwood
6 years, 4 months ago
So why would one vote make the difference if they all couldn't? Why do we even vote if we have a group of "elected officials" voting FOR us? Our vote is just for entertainment purposes. "This is who the public would've picked, but we are the deciding voters." Nice of them to let us show them what WOULD have happened...

Regardless, why waste my time voting, if some jerk-off in the electoral college could care less what you or I think? Especially if someone with more money (money=power in politics) slips him a nice damn paycheck to "vote for the right person..."
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