Saturday Selects: My Letter to President Obama

Saturday Selects is a series of posts I write that fall outside the general bookish theme of the blog. This is the first of 2017.


Donald Trump will be sworn in as President of the United States next week. So I did what I believe many Americans have done over the last eight years. I wrote a letter to President Obama.

This isn’t meant to start a discussion. This isn’t meant to somehow change your views of President Obama or Donald Trump. This is simply the sharing of my thoughts and life experience with my President of the last eight years. I don’t expect you to agree with me or to even care what I think about anything. This is simply something I wrote and am willing to put out for anyone who may be feeling the same way.

I know some of you don’t care to watch my video, so I’m also including the text of the letter here. This is no different from what’s in the video. This is exactly what I’ve sent to the White House.


Mr. President,

Your time serving in the White House is just about complete. I wanted to take a few minutes to write you a brief letter thanking you for your service to the country you and I both love and call home. I’m 25-years-old. I’ve lived my entire life in the state of Texas. I’ve been heavily interested in politics and current events since I was in high school, never more so than this year. Some would call me a cry-baby liberal who can’t get over losing this year’s election. But you and I both know that there was nothing typical about this year’s election. I have to be honest with you. I’m scared. I’m scared of what a Trump administration can accomplish in four years. I’m scared that those who look like me but weren’t fortunate enough to be born in the United States will be forced to leave the only country they’ve ever known. I’m scared that Donald Trump’s isolationist rhetoric and potential policies will alienate the United States from the rest of the world, most notably from our friends and allies. I’m scared that Donald Trump’s economic policies will only further widen the gap between those of us at or near the bottom and those at the top. I’m scared that Donald Trump will do nothing during his four years in The White House to tackle climate change. And I’m scared of the people who feel emboldened by his win to come out and say whatever they want, to whomever they want, no matter how wrong, disrespectful, or derogatory the remarks might be.

But the point of this letter isn’t to tell you how scared I am of the future. I refuse to live a life in fear. I want to personally thank you for your service. Thank you for helping to ensure equal pay for equal work. Thank you for fighting for marriage equality. Thank you for helping more than 20 million Americans gain access to affordable healthcare. Thank you for putting an end to “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Thank you for moving us toward clean energy because as you always say, this is the one planet we’ve got. Thank you for pushing for Americans to reach Mars. Thank you for pulling our country from the brink of a second Great Depression. My family lost our home in 2010, and my parents have struggled every day since, but we’re still here. We’re still fighting. We’re still putting our work in because in America hard work is rewarded. Thank you for keeping families together instead of dehumanizing illegal immigrants who are productive members of society. Thank you for respecting every American, no matter what they look like or who they love.  And thank you for bringing our troops home.

I could go on and on, as you can see, but I won’t. I want to end it very simply. Thank you for serving me and every other American for the last eight years with respect and dignity, humbly and gracefully. I’ll always be proud to say I voted for your reelection in 2012 to help continue to better the lives of every American.

I look forward to standing with you as a citizen in the continued fight against wrong, un-American policies, and furthering the idea that we are all created equal.

Sincerely,

A university educated, Mexican-American liberal from Texas

John Guillen

UPDATES AND CHANGES

It appears I’m off to a nice start to 2017. So I’m going to enact a few changes on here. I’ve been thinking about these for some time now.

First, Wednesday is video day. I’ve already shared one. But I’ve actually recorded two more. I know y’all aren’t as interested in those as my regular stuff. So Wednesday will be for videos. The next two will be for A Wrinkle in Time and Things Fall Apart. Already recorded, just waiting to share so I don’t bombard y’all with too many videos at once.

The other change will be to my long-running series Saturday Selects. For you newcomers, Saturday Selects is a series of posts I typically write on the first Saturday of each month about any topic of interest to me. They’re not about books. But I haven’t been doing them. I’m not stopping but I’m also not limiting myself to just one Saturday per month for these posts. I’m passionate about lots of things, and I want to share my thoughts on those things.

That’s all. 2017 will be momentous. Just watch.

Saturday Selects: Trump is Exactly Who We Think he is

Saturday Selects is a series of posts I usually write on the first Saturday of each month to discuss something outside the general bookish theme of the blog. Today I’m writing about Trump, again.

I’m sure you’re well aware by now of the recording that surfaced yesterday in which Donald Trump talks about sexually harassing and assaulting women. If you’re reading this and have no idea what I’m talking about, then I’ve got you covered. Here’s the video. There is lots of graphic language.


I can’t tell you how many people have actually defended his comments on social media and on TV. These people are the reason he feels he can say or do any thing he pleases. There’s no consequence. He says Mexicans are criminals. Meh. He says ban all Muslims from the US. Meh. He says women are disgusting. Meh. He says African Americans are living in hell. Meh. And now video surfaces of him sexually assaulting women because he’s a star and they let him do it.

There is no excuse. Republican. Democrat. Independent. White. Latino. College educated. Asian. African American. Middle class. 1%. It does not matter what you look like or where you live. A reasonable, respectful human being has no justification for supporting this man in ANY THING he does. And yet, he’ll still receive millions of votes on November 8th.

Saturday Selects: Your Voice

Saturday Selects is a series of posts I write on the first Saturday (usually) of each month to discuss a topic outside the general bookish theme of the blog. Today is a topic I touched on fairly recently. The 2016 presidential campaign.

Donald Trump will be the GOP nominee come November. Many who thought his candidacy was nothing more than a joke and public spectacle are now grappling with whether to support him or not.

But just because he’s emerged from a crowded field of contenders for the highest office in the world doesn’t mean anything is set in stone just yet. He’s been praised for having brought in new voters to the GOP while also being ridiculed by members of his own party.

But my message to you is quite simple. Your voice can still be heard. You have Trump, who needs no introduction whatsoever. And you’ll have Hillary. Many argue this election will truly be about the lesser of two evils, but I tend to disagree. Only one of the candidates is highly unqualified to hold the most important office in the world. And the other candidate has decades of public service.

My question today isn’t about your voting preference. I’m curious to learn your thoughts on how we reached this point.

This Week in Books #5: George R. R. Martin is (NOT) Dead

Welcome back to This Week in Books, where I dish on the latest and greatest stories in publishing each week. Today is no different. George R. R. Martin reportedly died and Amazon announces the location of their second physical bookstore. Now watch, watch, watch! And let me know what you think, please.

Saturday Selects #24: Go vote

Saturday Selects is a series of posts I write on the first Saturday of each month to discuss various topics outside the general bookish theme of the blog. Today’s topic is voting.

Congressional favorability ratings are still hovering around all-time lows. People are fed up with politicians. Many don’t think of their vote for president as being consequential. But everyone is only a part of one Congressional district for the House of Representatives. So instead of thinking about that one person who represents your area in the United States House of Representatives, why not think of all the local races and candidates on the ballot in November? Local judges. Sheriff. State senator and representative. School board. Mayor. State constitutional amendments. Governor.

You see, there is so much more on the ballot than just the presidential and congressional candidates. Every time I’ve voted there has been more than a dozen local items on the ballot. Voting for or against these items and candidates is probably even more important than voting in the national races. You could be voting on the legalization of marijuana or a major construction package. You could be voting on tax hikes or school funding. These would all be very important questions that are all local propositions. And items that could have a real impact on your life. Which is why I believe it to be so important to vote.

Maybe you don’t care about who occupies the Oval Office. Maybe you’ve never thought of what your Congressman is doing for you in Washington DC. And maybe you’ve been put off the entire political process. But voting is a whole lot more than political candidates hundreds or thousands of miles away. Election day isn’t for many months, but state primaries and caucases are well underway. And I’d encourage every registered voter to research their local candidates and get out to vote. Because you might not be interested in voting for Trump, Hillary, Bernie, or one of the remaining presidential candidates; but local races are also important.

How often do you vote?

This Week in Books #2: Apple, Khloe Kardashian, and more

Welcome to the second post in my new “This Week in Books” series here on the blog and YouTube channel. Today I’m discussing three interesting topics. Khloe Kardashian. Apple. And a new development about A Birthday Cake for George Washington. I know it’s a pretty random assortment of topics, but that’s what makes it fun! At least I’m doing something different, right? I mean, I could just grab the latest YA bestseller and review it like everyone else seems to do. But that’d be boring and not very original.

Anyway, now watch!

PS: I forgot to wear my hat this time. I’m sorry you have to see my hair. I’m embarrassed.