Hail To The Cheif

Hannah Daly

There is a common misconception among young voters, voters who are not as proactive as others, and in some cases the general population that President Obama accomplished very little in his four years in office and if reelected will accomplish very little again.  This point is a misconception and I will show some of these from a young person’s perspective.

President Obama has made amazing strides forward for the LGBT community; strides that seem so miniscule to so many people, but really end up changing lives. Some people who are less involved, or more concerned with the economy must realize the leaps and bounds Obama has made just this year with LGBT equality.

Women’s suffrage went state by state for 72 years before women got the right to vote, African Americans fought a war, followed by fighting for integrated marriage state by state. There is only one way this can go—forward.

Whether or not a person supports the LGBT community or not, it is important to maintain equal rights for all Americans regardless of their sexual orientation; Obama’s plan moving forward, not only progresses the movement for equality, but it maintains the advances we have made in the LGBT community.

“I think Obama has done a lot for the LGBT community… I would be optimistic about more LGBT progress in a possible second term” says Haven Butler FHS junior who continues on to say that “LGBT rights shouldn’t be ignored or denied” and Obama has taken steps in “the right direction”

Not only is President Obama the first president in history to openly endorse gay marriage, but he has also appointed the highest number gay officials than any other president has before. Whereas his running mates for example, hold different policies could potentially backtrack through all the progress we have made in acceptance.

President Obama also made sure that federal employees’ benefits were extended to their partner when he issued the extension benefits Memorandum-Extension of Benefits to Same-Sex Domestic Partners of Federal Employees; which means that their partner will count as a “family member” and their children will be recognized as their children.

The president also repealed the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy which stated that openly gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals could not serve in the military. Meaning essentially under this policy, you were good enough to die fighting for our country straight, but not gay.

These strides should not be viewed as unimportant, because we are making progress as an accepting nation and we should continue on that path for as long as possible.

President Obama has also pushed hard to reform student loans in a way that the middle class will come out on top. Obama signed a bill on student loans and healthcare that makes sure to expand college access for millions of Americans.

“I want to be able to go to college, and when I graduate I want to be able to get a job. School I guess, it’s definitely school” says Tyler Kokoszka, FHS Junior, when asked what is most important to him in the upcoming election.

Kokoszka agrees that education is important, and with the student loan reform being enacted in 2014 with Obama in office, it is quite possible attending a dream school isn’t a dream anymore.

With this law providing loans to college students and use much of the nearly $68 billion in savings over 11 years to expand Pell Grants and make it easier for students to repay outstanding loans after graduating, attending colleges of choice would be much simpler. Students would have to only repay loans at ten percent, instead of 15 of their income. Meaning you would get to save more money.

Not only does Obama recognize how important it is to have affordable school systems, but he understands equality. He understands that women and men are equal and should be treated as such.

The first piece of legislation that Obama signed was the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, an act that allows women who have been discriminated against because of gender to sue the company for missed income and benefits. The president has an amazing track record with equality and women’s rights, and he has promised to maintain that in his next term if reelected.

President Obama has had an amazing four years in office, even while inheriting the worst economic decline since the depression. Obama has ended the war in Iraq, proposed Obamacare—keeping children under parents insurance until they are 26 years old, gave millions access to affordable healthcare, proposed a plan for a brighter and significantly more green future, and pulled our economy back from the brink of a depression.

The next president must invest in our future, and based on the bills Obama has passed and supported he is on the right track. Now it’s Election Day, and we are going to see who America thinks has the brightest plan for our future. Let us know what you think!

Which is most important to you?


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