It’s stressful enough being an adult in this currently insane political environment – imagine how America’s children are feeling amongst the turmoil and wrath of Republican nominee Donald Trump. This election has so much of America already mourning the loss of one of our greatest leaders, President Barack Obama.
This letter from an 8-year-old named Lily, the daughter of a military family, to Obama perfectly captures both adoration and acceptance that Obama can’t be our president forever. In her letter, Lily wanted to thank Obama for his service and throw in a few suggestions of her own. One of them was to “wear a tie-dye shirt and shorts to something important” because America needs “more spunk”. And another, perhaps in reference to the chaos Trump causes on a daily basis, “Say something that will make everyone calm.”
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) August 12, 2016
Dear Mr. President,
I think this country needs more spunk. With all the attacks, the Zika virus, and the wars, this country is a very sad place. Please do something fun. Wear a tie-dye shirt and shorts to something important. Go on a water skiing trip in the Caribbean. Take your family to Disney World. Do something fun and out going. Also, please say something that will make everyone calm. You do know know how many politics worries I have.
Congratulations on having served almost eight years as President! I almost forgot to write that. I am your biggest fan, too. My dad is in the Air Force and that inspired me to have my back up job be President. (My dream job is cardiovascular surgeon.) Keep running the country!
8 years old
P.S. Thank you for being such an inspiration.
Obama has a history of taking care of the children in this country like they were his own. There have been numerous instances of him calming screaming babies and going out of his way to meet America’s youngest activists. So it should come as no surprise that Obama responded to Lily in his usual charismatic way. Although he was a little shaky about the apparel (“I don’t know how the First Lady or my daughters would feel about me wearing a tie-dye shirt in public”), he made sure to ease her worries:
I know things happening around the world can sometimes be worrisome, but we can make real and lasting progress if young people like you focus on growing and learning and keep speaking out about important challenges our Nation faces. As long as I serve in this Office and beyond, I’ll continue fighting to ensure kids all across our country are limited by nothing but the scope of their imaginations and the size of their dreams.
The commander-in-chief also made sure to express gratitude to Lily’s father, who is in the Air Force, and urged her to go after her dreams:
Again, thank you for the advice — and please tell your dad how grateful I am for his service. Wherever your hard work and talents take you — whether it’s becoming a cardiovascular surgeon, the President of the United States, or chasing a dream you’ve yet to discover — always remember that you have a big role to play in shaping the world and making a difference in people’s lives.
Obama concluded his letter on an encouraging note:
Your enthusiasm and drive give me great hope for the future, and I am confident you can achieve your highest aspirations if you put your best effort into everything you do.
Here’s Obama’s full letter:
Obama has certainly made an impact on even this country’s youngest minds. As Obama’s term comes to an end, we couldn’t be more thankful for his service, and we’ll all surely miss him. Perhaps the best thing we can do to honor his legacy is to protect all of the progress Obama made in America, by making sure that a Republican doesn’t get into the White House to ruin it.
Featured image via Biography.com and Twitter