Email from a Letter Writer: "He Gave Michigan Hope Again"
Brianna Leathers from Sterling, MI reflects on how far America’s auto industry has come since she first wrote the President in 2009.
When she was 13 years old, Brianna Leathers wrote to the President to share her worries about her family’s future as the American auto industry stood on the brink of collapse. Today, she sent the following message on how far we’ve come since those days thanks to President Obama’s decision to bet on American workers like her dad. Didn’t get the message? Sign up here.
In 2009, when I was thirteen years old, I wrote this in a letter to the President:
“Dear President Obama,
My dad works for a company that manufactures cables for the automotive companies … This industry isn’t doing so well but these guys are still doing ok. I thought it would be nice if you gave them a visit … I am 13 years old and I am worried about my family’s future in Michigan.”
That was then. Today, the company my dad works for is thriving again, giving him a brighter outlook to continue his career as an auto supplier. The falling unemployment rate makes me feel more hopeful about finding a career of my own after college. People in Michigan are more confident about the future of our state than they’ve felt in a long time.
When President Obama saved the auto industry, he gave Michiganders like me and my family hope again.
As a 13-year-old girl, I saw a few of my relatives get laid off from the automotive companies they worked for. I felt that it was unfair to them because I knew they were hard workers. Through overhearing my dad talk to customers and colleagues on the phone, I got a sense of just how much the entire industry was struggling then.
When I wrote to President Obama in 2009, I felt hopeful something could be done to improve this terrible situation.
Seven years after the President took steps to rescue the auto industry, so much has changed. I’ve seen foreclosed homes being occupied again, new homes being built, and people going back to work in the auto industry.
A Very Short
Fact: On this day in 1934, the steam locomotive, the Flying Scotsman becomes the
first to officially exceed 100mph.
“Railroads undergirded the nation’s postwar
economic boom, transporting coal and iron ore to Carnegie’s steel mills, farm
equipment to rural America, livestock to Chicago’s slaughterhouses, grain to
the mills of Minneapolis, machinery and consumer goods across the land, and
immigrants to the vast interior. Rail tycoons like Collis P. Huntington and
Leland Stanford in California, Cornelius
Vanderbilt and Jay Gould in New York, and James J. Hill in Minnesota were among
the best known, and most feared, figures of the age. Coal-fueled steam engines powered the era’s factories, locomotives, machinery
works, and grain mills. Steam technology
developed rapidly in the late nineteenth century, powering ocean liners and
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“It was during the reign of Kublai in the thirteenth century that Marco Polo visited China and discovered a new type of alchemy— one even better than turning base metals into gold. He learned, to his wonderment, of money that could be created with paper and without being backed by stores of precious metals. This alchemy took place in Kanbalu, also known as Khanbaliq, the capital of the Yuan dynasty— now known as Beijing. The money that Marco Polo saw was printed on paper made from the bark of mulberry trees. The Yuan government used woodblocks and, later, bronze plates to print the paper money, which took the form of a variety of banknotes called Chao.”
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