Monday, June 18, 2012

Letter to the President from Billy

Dear Mr. Obama

      My friend Zoe told me that if I wrote you a letter she would try and hand deliver it when she met you.  As you can imagine writing a letter to the president can be a very intimidating task. The first thing is to decide what I do write about, the war, the economy, foreign or domestic policy. Then I had to decide the tone of the letter. Should I come across as groveling or demanding? Then there is the 3rd and most intimidating obstacle, using spelling, grammar, and punctuation properly. If you haven't guessed yet I'm not very good at any of those 3.  This left me with 2 choices. Either I could wallow in my analysis paralysis and not write you a letter for fear of not being perfect, or I could just go for it, speak from the heart, and make lots of mistakes. I thought I’m never gunna have another chance to have my letter hand delivered to a president. I should just go for it. I want to thank you in advance for taking time out of your busy schedule to read my letter.

     I'm a gay man and I have been in a committed relationship for 8 1/2 years. I love living in the United States, and I particularly enjoy living in Pennsylvania. If you looked at my heart it would probably be keystone shaped. Even though I'm very happy with my life I often ask myself why do I continue to live in a state that treats me like a 2nd class citizen. Why can't I marry the man I love? The biggest reason we don't move to another state is cuz we can't afford to, and also because we don't want to let bigotry control our lives. We don't have much money. As a couple we manage to get by, and we're happy in our working class, row home lifestyle. If something were to happen to me, however, my significant other would be in dire straits.      Because we cannot legally get married, I can't afford to add him to the deed of the house. The taxes we would have to pay for that are prohibited. If we were married there would be no taxes to add him to the deed. I have left the house to him in my will; but we don't have the money to pay the inheritance tax. If we were married the taxes wouldn't be so high. When something happens to me the love of my life will be homeless.

When I saw that you came out in support of same sex marriage I was overjoyed. I quickly googled your speech to see what you were planning on doing to promote gay marriage. I saw you were planning on doing nothing. When I saw that you supported the states right to discriminate I was crestfallen. The fact that you stated this the day after the North Carolina decision only legitimized their right to discriminate. Why couldn't you have come out the day before the election to announce your support for gay marriage? Did you really have to wait one day? Your statement of personal support feels as if it is nothing but a campaign trick. I feel like you are exploiting my 2nd class standing as a publicity stunt. You are the president. You have the power to put pen to paper and make some significant changes. Please do your job and bring about equality. Not many presidents have enacted change to legally eliminate a groups standing as 2nd class citizens. Don't you want that as part of your legacy?

Thanks again for taking the time to read my letter, and for allowing my to express my Opinion.

     A friend in Pennsylvania.

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