Thoughts on the Presidential Campaign

Dear friends & family.. It's not often in one's lifetime that we get to witness a political campaign that inspires, that empowers, that has been inclusive of so many, as the one we are witnessing now. Perhaps that's because it's rare that a candidate comes along that we as a people feel we can believe in wholeheartedly. A candidate that we believe will do exactly as he says, says exactly what he means, and whose intellect, compassion and sincerity resonate with so many of us. Though I know there have been many, in my lifetime, I have only seen two such candidates. I watched when Jimmy Carter came into office and even though I wasn't old enough to vote or to even fully understand the true merit of a President like Jimmy Carter, I understood through numerous family discussions and their subsequent reaction to his winning that it was an important time in the world. I only began to understand much later the kinds of changes that Jimmy Carter was able to implement in this country economically, environmentally and diplomatically. Later on, I came of voting age during Bill Clinton's campaign and was so thrilled to be able to vote for a candidate that I actually believed in! One who's brilliance, generosity of spirit and love for the people of this country was palpable and heartwarming. What's striking about this to me now, is that I had already become jaded enough to be prepared not to believe in any candidate. After President Clinton's departure from office, I am saddened to say that I personally became so disinterested, then disgusted with, and finally, completely without hope in the democratic process. In the last 8 years I have witnessed things within the current administration that have made me feel angry, ashamed, disheartened and incredulous. More importantly, I'd begun to feel disenfranchised enough to wonder if perhaps my vote didn't even matter. And then out of nowhere came a breath of fresh air.. a ray of light.. a sliver of hope.. and his name was Barack Obama.. After witnessing atrocities like 9/11, the aftermath of Katrina and the Iraqi war, I think we can all understand what it means to begin to have a sense of hope again. I, like so many of you, have found Barack to be a voice of reason, a voice that has reminded us that the political process IS OURS to shape as we will. A voice that has encouraged and inspired me to remember that my vote is important, that I CAN make a difference and that we can stop this madness that the Republican party has unleashed on each and everyone of us! Now, once again I have the feeling of important changes taking place within our nation and of being a part of something bigger. I have that feeling of bearing witness to that rarest of things.. a campaign headed by a candidate who not only restores my faith in the political process, but who makes me feel as though HE believes in AND understands the power of that process. A process, he reminds us, that each of us has the right to be a part of. Here, at last, is a candidate who makes me want to get up, go out and find others who will join me in making our overwhelming need for change a reality. Barack Obama has proven he is committed to changing the political process by building a campaign founded on a broad base of support from ordinary Americans like ourselves. For Barack this campaign is NOT about winning the "prize" (as stated by Senator McCain), but instead about putting the people's interests ahead of the special interests, and to do that, Barack needs help from people like us. In light of all this, I decided I needed to do something, to get involved somehow, so I've started a fund raising page on the Barack Obama website. I've set my own personal fund raising goal for the campaign, which you will see when you visit the page. Will you click the thermometer to make a donation and help us reach our goal? I have no doubt that many of you have more than likely already contributed to the Obama campaign, but if you haven't or even if you have, let us put our money where our mouths are and not just watch this historical time in politics but be an active part of it as well. If we want to see change, why not let that change start with us.. Please give what you can. Go to: http://my.barackobama.com/page/outreach/view/main/viv Thank you for listening, Vivian Sessoms for Barack Obama