An Open Letter to Candidate Biden

Democratic 2020 U.S. presidential candidate Joe Biden REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

Dear Mr. Vice President Joe Biden,

I offer my heartfelt congratulations and best wishes as you mark this significant milestone and beginning of this new era.  Congratulations on picking running mate Senator Kamala Harris as your vice president. Our community in Lehigh Valley are delighted and proud to hear that Senator Kamala will be your Vice President. You have made the historic, most sensible, boldest and qualified pick. No one should doubt about Senator Kamala Harris she is full of energy with abundant political  and prosecutorial skills. She has the right credentials, she is tenacious, smart and talented. She will be an asset as well a great partner on the campaign trail.

Senator  Kamala Harris is the third woman, first Black woman and the first person of Indian-descent to be picked as a vice president candidate. She has biracial roots, raised primary by her Hindi mother, a cancer researcher and a father economic professor of Jamaican decent and civil rights activist. Mr. Vice President, your selection of Harris, substanially appreciates racial diversity and gender parity. She will bring Americans together and unite for a better America.

May the journey you have begun, be fruitful, joyous and successful.

America is a great country that has suffered a great calamity in last three and half years of Trump, who is extreme racist, liar, religious bigot and fascist. I write this letter to the Vice President Biden as a concerned and proud citizen. The last three months of your zoom forum you have so persuasive articulated, and encourage us to believe that you are the right choice for the President. However, I urge you not to ignore and to listen to the voices of people – Black, Latinos and Muslims who will lift you to the President, rather than to the powerful lobbies and special interest groups who will elevate you to the top floor and then drop you. Black, Latinos and Muslim (BLM) vote will be the deciding block in all contested states which you need to win. Black, Latinos and Muslims will not thoughtlessly go to the ballot box to support you. Democratic party need to empower the Blacks Latinos and Muslims to win up and down ballot in November, similar to “Obama coalition” of 2008. The last nominee failed miserably and you cannot afford to make this mistake or many Blacks, Latino and Muslims will simply stay home. Blacks, Latinos and Muslims  poised to play a critical role in defeating Trump.

Mr. Vice President, We are divided as country, family and communities because of the poisonous venom coming from the White House and news media outlet. There is no reason to hate one another. Friendships have been lost. Family members have been ostracized. The fact that my political views or my race and religion don’t align exactly with yours and just because I like plain cheese pizza and you like pepperoni pizza should not stop, we being friends.

Past two decades we have seen endless proxy (Zionist) wars, failed foreign policy, degradation of our environment, steep rise inequality, enormous student loan debt, mass deportations, mass incarceration, police brutality, corruption, school shooting, gun violence and I can go on and on. This is partly due to that our elected officials have prioritized the voices of wealthy lobbyist, special interest groups and corporations over our needs. We need a vision for the future, not a return to the past. I hope you can deliver what you are promising.

Mr. Vice President, if you want your legacy to live forever among the coming generations, please do not misuse this great opportunity. I believe you have the skill but swimming in these difficult time in the ocean full of powerful currants requires courage and determination. We are together in ocean, you sink we sink, you swim we swim with you.

Mr. Vice President, It’s not that you can’t chew gum and walk at the same time during this pandemic and worst economic crises.! There are many things you can do in your first hundreds days and they are:

• You must end corruption with anti-corruption reforms such as limiting professional lobbying and introduce a constitutional amendment to limit campaign contributions – nulling citizen United.

• Your Justice department should investigate and prosecute all reported crimes committed against detained immigrants. We need comprehensive reform of our immigration justice system including solution to DACA.

• Your cabinet should be a diverse cabinet of Black, Latinos and Muslims so we have input in formulation your domestic and foreign policy. Blacks Latinos and Muslims should have a seat at the table so you can hear of our struggles and learn from our experiences, which come out of rich histories of struggle against oppression in this country. We want to be at the table, not on the menu. We want to help you develop the policies using equity lens to improve life of all Americans. 

• You should address $1.7 trillion in student debt and support free undergraduate tuition and vocational schools. It is time to turn the page on failed policies of Betsy DeVos and invest in our nation’s public schools, which enroll nearly 90 percent of all-American children.

• I must stress the urgent need to address climate change.  I believe that that climate change is an existential threat. Return to Paris Climate Change agreement and adopt the frameworks of the Green New Deal.

  I believe that healthcare is a human right, so strengthen ACA (Obama Care) and support the Affordable Drug Manufacturing Act to allow the government to manufacture generic versions of drugs and dramatically lower prescription drug prices. Support Medicare for All, especially in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

Finally, I would request you to read the book “The Voice of Human Justice” by George Jordac and the Book Nahjul Al-Balagha (a collection of saying of Imam Ali). Imam Ali, the icon of Justice – The man who practically demonstrated to the world the concept of human rights and social justice. He left behind an immortal legacy, which has continued to inspire humanity towards lofty goals of justice in society and adapted by the human rights at United Nation. You should also read the book Iqtisaduna (Islamic Economics) and Falsafatuna (Economic and Banking) by prominent by Baqir-al Sadr. It is a critique of European philosophy, especially of capitalism and socialism, from an Islamic viewpoint.

 

A Proud but Concerned citizen,
Mohammed Khaku

The author of this article was born in Mombasa, Kenya, residing now in Allentown PA, USA