Dear Mr. President,
8 years ago, I was a 16 year old high schooler who couldn’t vote in the upcoming election so I spent my time going door to door canvassing for a Democratic candidate in a historically Republican state. That election year, history was made when Indiana turned blue for the first time in over 40 years, and I was proud of you and the people running your campaign and glad that I was a part of it.
Your presidency had a lot of ups and downs. The challenges you have faced in these 8 years were probably greater than you even imagined to face. People said you were all talk and no action. And although you couldn’t keep all your campaign promises, I wanted to let you know that that 16 year old who was so inspired by your words, is now 24 and still does not regret her decision to support you.
Yesterday, you visited a Baltimore masjid and said a few words that really needed to be heard. As a Muslim American practicing hijab, I realize more than anyone the impact hateful rhetoric has on people who are ignorant and don’t know better. In the past few years, more people have been comfortable with passing comments to be than ever in my life. I’m an adult so it doesn’t affect me as much. But I couldn’t imagine being a young kid being bullied about being Muslim in school, and more than anything, your words were important for those kids who are struggling with their identity because of what a few “leading” candidates have said.
So thank you, for always being vocal for what’s right. And thank you for being the best you could be in these last 8 years. I cannot imagine anyone else in your place. Also, you’re cool af.
Best wishes to you and your family,
President Obama traveled to Springfield, Illinois today, nine years after announcing his candidacy for President. Watch his speech at the Illinois Capitol, and share where you were in 2007 using #WhereWereYou.