Huffpost Politics

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Biko Baker Headshot

An Open Letter to President Obama: You Brought Down the Boogie Man, Now Bring Back the Hope!

Posted: Updated:

Congratulations Mr. President, you've had an amazing week. Not only did you silence the haters by producing your long-form birth certificate (and kudos on roasting Donald Trump like a bag of Planters peanuts), but you also took out the world's most wanted criminal. During the campaign, your detractors questioned if you had the heart to be our Commander-in-Chief, but boy were they wrong! I can only imagine how former President George W. Bush felt when he found out that you were the one that actually "smoked him out!"

I know that there are dozens of conspiracy theories out there, including that Osama Bin Laden isn't actually dead or that he actually died years ago. But you know what? Sometimes you've got to let the haters hate. Trust me, these people are just trying to steal your shine. To me, it doesn't even matter if Bin Laden died yesterday, years ago and/or if he is still in a cave in the hinterlands of Afghanistan. Either way, the absence of the mastermind behind 9-11 represents an end of an era, and you are responsible for ending that chapter of American history.

Of course, there are those in Washington D.C. that argue that we may be less safe now, and that we need to actually make even more investments in our military-industrial complex. But I don't buy that. Bin Laden's death presents your administration with new opportunities to think seriously about our foreign policy and most importantly, the size of our defense budget. Because even if we only reduce the spending on the special forces operations that were chasing Bin Laden, our nation could be saving billions of dollars a year and reinvesting in our nation's economy.

At the end of the day, there are no bigger threats to our nation than the unemployment and joblessness rates affecting our nation's workforce. Especially in a political climate in which elected officials from both sides of the aisle seek to cut benefits for poor people. Because, unlike terrorism, which seeks to undermine society through shock and awe, hopelessness prevents the disaffected from believing that they have what it takes to become active participants in society. And I am not sure if you know this or not, lots of people, including the young people from your old stomping grounds, the South Side of Chicago, are teetering closer to the abyss of hopelessness and despair. (Did you know that since the wars in the Middle East started, more Americans have died on our streets than have died fighting for freedom? Sorta scary, huh?)

Continue reading at