Posts Tagged ‘Ellen

24
Sep
14

A Letter from the President

by Africa

Helping Liberia – Thank you President Obama – from the bottom of my heart

On August 3, at the urging of BobFr, I sent a letter to President Obama. Essentially, it was a modified comment I had posted here.

It was just at the start of the African Summit that President Obama was going to be convening with leaders from across the continent. At the time, news of the Ebola virus ravaging several countries in West Africa, including Liberia, my native country, was being hotly discussed. We also learned that Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, the president of Liberia, would not be attending the conference because of the seriousness of the deadly virus. I lamented here that this would have been an opportune time for her to discuss not only the Ebola virus, but the deplorable health care infrastructure in the country.

I touched on some of those same concerns here in my August 3 comments (here)

That’s why after Bob encouraged me to write President Obama, I did. On September 22, I received a letter from him, dated September, 15, 2014.

I don’t quite remember everything I said to the president in my letter, because I typed it in the White House e-mail format and regrettably did not save a copy. But I believe I shared with him the lack of basic health care in Liberia and my own family struggle with my husband’s illness and desire to return someday, but could not do so. Without adequate routine medical care, my husband would not survive in Liberia, given that there is no treatment center there to treat him.

So, two days ago, shortly after I had gotten home briefly to drop off the car so that my husband could run and see his nurse, as I walked into the door, he said, “There is an envelope for you from the White House.” You can only imagine my surprise.

I immediately dropped my purse and grabbed the oversized manila envelope. I quickly opened it and began reading its contents. I was so excited, I could barely contain myself. I ran to my computer and tweeted that I got the letter and then posted it here.

My friends, words cannot express my deepest gratitude to President Obama for the swift action he has taken to save the lives of thousands of Liberians. It is a massive undertaking that many in Liberia will be grateful for, too. (Liberian Observer: President Obama’s Robust Response: A Security Council Resolution Could Greatly Help the Process)

You see, even before I wrote to President Obama, the U.S. had already taken steps to help Liberia and other countries in the region. And since my letter weeks ago, the President and his administration, alongside their International partners, have done much more to help battle the deadly virus. As part of the efforts to respond the Ebola epidemic, last week, the president sent 3,000 soldiers to Liberia to begin the work of containing the fast moving virus. (WH FACT SHEET: U.S. Response to the Ebola Epidemic in West Africa)

I am hopeful that the residual effects from the aid by the U.S. government and its partners around the world, will offer an opportunity for Liberia to emerge with a health care infrastructure, that will not only allow me and my family to go home, but will benefit thousands of Liberians who suffer needlessly and sometimes die from illnesses that could be easily treated.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), “the 2014 Ebola outbreak is the largest Ebola outbreak in history and the first Ebola outbreak in West Africa.” And to date, it has touched the lives of 5,864 people. In Liberia alone, some 1,500 people have died. (CDC: 2014 Ebola Outbreak in West Africa)

So far, both my husband’s family and mine still living in Liberia, have not been harmed by the devasting virus. Many others are not so lucky.

Not only do we count our blessings for this, but also for President Obama’s action to take a stand and join other nations to prevent the loss of countless lives.

For this, as a Liberian native, I am eternally grateful to President Obama and I thank him from the bottom of my heart. Many Liberians will never forget what you have done here today.

Thank you fellow TODers for all your support and encouragement. I am deeply honored to be a part of this wonderful place.

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19
Mar
14

The Obamas + Ellen = A Fantastic Time

In honor of President Barack Obama appearing on Ellen tomorrow (Thursday), take a walk down a delightful memory lane

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Continue reading ‘The Obamas + Ellen = A Fantastic Time’

16
Sep
13

A Smile Or Two

Continue reading ‘A Smile Or Two’

06
Jun
13

Privilege

by @Lib_Librarian – Cross posted on The People’s View

I did not grow up in an atmosphere of privilege. My dad owned his own barbershop, and my mom was a seamstress in New York’s garment district. I wanted for nothing, but I knew we were solidly working class. If I and my brothers wanted to go to university—and with our parents, it was expected—we would have to work for it. There were no college funds, and no rich uncle was going to swoop in and save us. All we had were each other, our willingness to work, and our native intelligences.

Not coming from a place of privilege, I know instinctively that most things in this life for most people come at a price, the price usually being hard struggle. The world gives up very little for free. Short cuts, when they do exist, are far and few between. As I said in my post yesterday, at first that made me a practiced cynic. Fortunately I grew out of it, and embraced the rewards that come with struggle; the struggle makes the reward all that much sweeter.

But just as cynicism infects our modern politics, so does a culture of privilege.

Continue reading ‘Privilege’

09
Feb
13

Six years ago….. Barack Obama announces his candidacy

Springfield, Illinois, February 10, 2007 – Photo: Pete Souza

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Text of the speech here

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NYT: Senator Barack Obama of Illinois, standing before the Old State Capitol where Abraham Lincoln began his political career, announced his candidacy for the White House on Saturday by presenting himself as an agent of generational change who could transform a government hobbled by cynicism, petty corruption and “a smallness of our politics.”

…. It was the latest step in a journey rich with historic possibilities and symbolism. Thousands of people packed the town square to witness it, shivering in the single-digit frostiness until Mr. Obama appeared, trailed by his wife, Michelle, and two young daughters….

…. The formal entry to the race framed a challenge that would seem daunting to even the most talented politician: whether Mr. Obama, with all his strengths and limitations, can win in a field dominated by Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, who brings years of experience in presidential politics, a command of policy and political history, and an extraordinarily battle-tested network of fund-raisers and advisers.

…. “If a campaign is premised on personality, then no, I don’t think you can stay fresh for a year,” he said. “But if the campaign is built from the ground up and there is a sense of ownership among people who want to see significant change, then absolutely. It can build and grow.”

More here

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Photo: Callie Shell

Click to see the rest of the post

14
Sep
12

Michelle

Fredericksburg, September 13 (Han Nguyen for Obama for America)

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Thank you Rita!

09
May
12

“An authentic act of political courage”

Charles Pierce: …. As to the argument that the president “didn’t want this” to open up in an election year, I think he did. It’s too perfect an ending to the narrative of his “evolving position” that he’s been talking about for three years. He saw a clear injustice — the North Carolina vote — and he decided that his conscience would brook no more delay. Look at how carefully he wove his support of marriage equality into the fabric of everything else he’d done for the cause of equality since he’s been president.

He talked about how our men and women in the armed forces (you know, the gay ones who can serve openly because he ended Don’t-Ask-Don’t-Tell, and who can get married in Massachusetts and Hawaii because he told his Justice Department not to pursue cases under the Defense of Marriage Act) shouldn’t be denied a right that we all have — to marry — just because they’ve left the killing fields.

…. I think both the Biden and Duncan interviews were long-range reconnaissance, and I think he got the information he wanted. I have my differences with this president, god knows, but this is one thing of which I am certain: He does absolutely nothing by accident. He has spent his entire life learning how to take cautious, considered steps. He’s damned good at it by now.

…. All of which is not to diminish what an authentic act of political courage this actually is. The dingbats will scream and fling their poo to all points of the compass …. even I can’t be cynical enough to deny that most of the reasons that the president said what he did today he said because he is a child of the civil-rights movement, someone whose fundamental ethics and whose most basic view of this country were formed as a result of the crucible through which the country passed in those years, and I believe he saw that denying gay couples the right to marriage when they contribute so much to so many areas of society was simply the right thing to do.

….. we all had a good laugh at his “evolving position on it,” but don’t we want our presidents to be thoughtful, to be open to new data and new perpectives, and new ways of thinking about things? …..I can tell you that, in my lifetime, I have had my fill of rigid presidents.

….a better and fairer country awaits ….I’m prouder to be driving through this country than I was this morning, that’s for sure.

Full post here

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Thanks BWD

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Liberal Librarian: President Obama has evolved to embrace everyone’s basic human right to marry the person they love. Mitt Romney has devolved from a moderate Republican to a puppet of the Koch Bros and the Tea Party. Enough said.

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See ThinkProgress for more, these are just fantastic – thank you DesertFlower

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