Ever since the inauguration of President HeWhoShallNotBeNamed I’ve been under a lot of stress thinking about the state of our country and the world. My Facebook feed and conversations I have with friends, family and co-workers tells me I’m not alone. But as I vowed last month, I’m trying to keep a positive attitude. One of the silver linings I see as a result of having a con-man in the oval office is a wave of Americans with a newfound interest in the inner workings of our government.
The other night, after watching the latest bad news about the chaos in the White House and the ill effects this could have on our nation, I settled myself into bed. While trying to ease my mind for sleep I felt a sense of faith which, despite years of being a devote Catholic, was unlike anything I have ever felt before. It was a very deep sense of faith in the American people and the values we share. In that moment I felt in my soul that our Constitution, written and framed to protect us from dictators, would stand and in the end we would all be OK.
The next morning I carved 20 minutes out of my workday and wrote a letter to Paul Ryan. It was a very sincere letter, containing the very things I would want to say to him if I ever saw him in person:
Dear Mr. Ryan,
I write to you from California. While I am not one of your constituents, I am an American citizen who is extremely concerned about the preservation of our democracy and Constitution. I therefore ask that you please support all efforts to form an independent investigation of the current administration and their potential ties to Russia.
Mr. Ryan, the good people of Wisconsin voted for you to SERVE not only their interests, but the interests of this nation. As a fellow gen-Xer who, like you, grew up during the Reagan years I am baffled by your lack of engagement on this issue of Russia and their potential ties to our president. We need to know the truth of what is happening.
We need leaders such as yourself to put the interests of the Republican party aside and stand up for the best interests of the American people. Listen to your heart Mr. Ryan. Do what’s right. We are depending on you sir.
Castro Valley, California
The next day I wrote a letter to Jason Chaffetz. A lot about Jason Chaffetz makes me extremely ragey but I was able to put those feeling aside to also appeal to what I hope is his human side:
Dear Mr. Chaffetz,
I write to you from California, as a fellow gen-Xer (Granada High in Livermore, class of ’85!) and a concerned American citizen. I am asking you to please support all efforts to form an independent investigation of the current administration and their potential ties to Russia.
Our country is in the midst of a crisis Mr. Chaffetz. You know this and as Chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee you have a responsibility to get to the bottom of our current president’s ties to Russia. Your current refusal to do so has me baffled. You took an OATH sir. You took an oath to uphold the Constitution and preserve American democracy. Why are you not doing this?
We need you to be a leader Mr. Chaffetz. We need you to put the interests of the Republican party aside and stand up for the best interests of the American people. Listen to your heart Mr. Chaffetz and look into the eyes of your children. They deserve a father who is courageous enough to stand up and do what he knows is right. They deserve a father who is on the right side of history. They deserve a father who knows what it means to be an American. Stand up Mr. Chaffetz and be the American we all need you to be.
Castro Valley, California
I was able to send Paul Ryan his letter though email. Jason Chaffetz will not accept email from people outside his district (another thing about him that makes me mad) so I had to print the letter out and mail it by hand. Will either of these congressmen even see these? Of course not. At best my letters will be one of many that may be a momentary prick on the conscience of their staffers. But more importantly, writing these letters and sending them out made me feel better. They gave me a beacon of hope and are a reminder that I am an active American who has faith in our system. And I believe that faith is what is going to get us through this.