Thursday, November 15, 2012
Mr. Obama, help us!
Just possibly we can return to a more civil tone in our conversations and attitudes. I hope so.
But, with President Obama headed for his second term, I have favors to ask of him and the new Congress.
My requests relate to my own neighborhood and to the people who live around me, my neighbors. I'll just put my priorities in a list without much comment.
1. Please work to give us comprehensive immigration reform so that so many of us can live without the fear of deportation. The vast majority of us work hard every day to make Dallas great. Please give us all a pathway to legitimacy as residents and members of the labor force.
2. If comprehensive immigration reform is not possible, then at least give us the DREAM Act to put our children in documented status so they can finish school and go to work legally.
3. Help us obtain the workforce skills we need to land livable wage jobs.
4. Make sure our children can attend public schools that work.
5. Stay the course so that we can make progress in providing universal health care for all of us.
6. Continue to fund programs like AmeriCorps, and take a look at how the programs of the Corporation of National and Community Service actually pay for themselves in public benefit and educational advancement. AmeriCorps' ROI is astounding!
7. Help us rebuild the blighted neighborhoods often referred to as the "ghetto," but known as "home" to many of us.
8. Find ways to support/reward creative mayors who come up with new, innovative community renewal strategies that actually work!
9. Incentivize the utilization of creative financial instruments like social impact bonds (SIBs).
10. Lead the most progressive tax reform effort in our nation's history to promote policies that lift people and create new wealth at the bottom--I know those techniques exist and I know you are smart enough to identify them!
11. Bring work back to the inner cities of the nation.
12. Figure out how to make as many of those jobs as possible linked in training programs to the emerging "green economy."