dear mr president



Yesterday afternoon, I was asked to write a letter to the President.

I thought perhaps they meant the president of the PTO or maybe the president of the local Kiwanis club, but it turned out they meant, you know, the big guy. Like the leader of the free world. THE President. Like of the United States of America.

So really, no pressure.

But as it turned out, there was a good reason for it, so I was game.

The point of the letter was to tell President Obama why I think that he needs to light the White House blue on April 2nd in support of World Autism Awareness Day.

And from the bottom of my heart, I do.

Please read the letter and if you find that you agree with its sentiment, I’d be grateful if you’d leave a comment on the Light the White House Blue site saying that. Please then feel free to share it with friends (via the link below) and ask them to do the same.

Please don’t get me wrong.

Awareness is not  the goal.

But it is the only means by which we can reach it.

—> Please click here to read my letter to President Obama <—

45 thoughts on “dear mr president

  1. Awesome letter Jess! You are such an inspiring mom and your love and devotion to your daughters is so evident in this letter. Wow!

  2. Jess, This is awesome. I hope the President listens, because right now state governments are tightening belts and the first things being cut are early intervention programs and services for people with special needs. We need a huge national initiative to counterbalance this.

    Because a state representative of New Hampshire has said we should just dispose of all the broken people and not spend any of our hard earned money on “defectives”, like the disabled, and that furthermore he wished we could “ship them all off to freeze to death and die and clean up the population.” And some people actually agree with this lunacy. I never thought I would hear ideas straight out of Hitler’s Germany coming out of American elected officials, but it has come to this.

    Anyway, thank you for writing this heartfelt and beautifully written letter. I sincerely hope President Obama listens, hears and responds. We need this. Our children needs this. The moral fiber of our society is only as strong as how we treat the weakest and and most fragile members of our population. Here is a chance to do the right thing. Let’s not blow it.

  3. You speak for all of us, Jess. You really do. There is nothing, absolutely nothing that I would not do for my son. My incredibly intelligent, absolutely endearing, and completely amazing autistic son. Your words capture our struggles, our triumphs, our challenges, and our fears. I am confident that such a compelling letter will capture more than just my attention, nor solely the attention of the remainder of your captive audience. Our president simply has to feel the passion, the advocacy, the support, and the hope inscribed in your message, our message. I don’t believe that there is a compassionate soul on this planet that would not feel compelled to comply with your wish, with our wish, to raise awareness by Lighting Up Blue! Thank you from the bottom of my heart, from the very fibers of my being for standing up and being the voice of our community. Thank you. Aimee Velazquez aka Red Shoes, Autism Blues

  4. If only I had the foresight ( and this gift for exactly the right words at the right time ) to have already done so, this is the EXACT letter I would have written Mr. Obama. Thank you, from another home with a blue porch light, and another mother who fiercely and tenderly loves my daughters – one ASD and one NT – and who would move heaven and earth and anything else that got in the way of them reaching their full potential, or which hurt them…

    I am the LUCKY ASD mom. I have a daughter who is high functioning. One who is fully mainstreamed. One who is verbal. One who will be able to live, in some fashion, independently, when she truly needs to. One who can “pass” most of the time for “normal.” Except when she can’t. CAN’T. And perhaps the hardest battle we face is the one the blue-light is designed to address – recognition and following that, dialog and compassionate understanding.

    Because she functions so well so much of the time, because she looks just like everyone else, the world expects her to BE like everyone else. And she isn’t. And she won’t be. Not because she is stubborn, or bad, or selfish, or spoiled, or a trouble maker, or isn’t trying hard enough… Because she CAN’T. She isn’t BUILT that way. She achieves what she does through a force of will and an effort I can only just barely imagine mustering every day. And then, sometimes, the energy, the reserves, run out.

    When she can no longer manage to act and react like “normal” people not only does she have to fight to understand the great many demands of a world alien to her understanding, and fight to regain her self control, physically and emotionally, she must fight the rest of the world’s misunderstandings and judgments that there is something WRONG with her instead of something merely different about her. And then, she must fight to keep from believing herself that she is damaged, wrong, unworthy…

    No child should have to fight those battles, let alone fight them over and over, day after day after day.

    Please, light the White House blue. Fight WITH our children instead of against them!!!

  5. Thank you all for your comments, but …



  6. Jess, Thank you for writing this beautiful letter. I will light up blue for the day and keep the conversation and hope going for your wonderful daughter and all the others like her. Mr. President, I hope you will, too.

  7. Awesome words, as usual! Come on, there’s only an upside to putting in a few blue bulbs for a night! Plus, you’ll feel great to know you’ve helped get the conversation going! Come on, Mr. President, just do it!

  8. This is great Jess, one of your best letters ever. Many thanks for being our voice. I sure hope someone can tell him that YOUR letter is a must read! Many thanks!

  9. Dear President Doam,
    Thank you for pouring out your heart to people in high places on behalf of people in blue places. I, for one, am thankful to be a part of the community you represent. While blue places are challenging on a good day, there’s no denying the blessings that have come from such places. You have secured my vote!

  10. Jess, like everything I’ve ever read from you, this letter is beautifully written. You never cease to amaze me : )
    BTW-I left my comment on the site as well.

  11. I will leave a comment on the other site but just had to tell you how moved I was by this. I have already bought my blue light bulbs and have shared your letter with all my facebook friends and with your permission would love to share the link on my new Blog site.

  12. I read online that the president was already asked to light the white house blue for prostate cancer awareness month so why are we asking him to go blue again?

  13. perfect. your gift for words is in evidence here, the letter is exactly what needs to be said and heard and acted on. you: impressive.

  14. As always, very well said, Jess! Thanks for using your words so eloquently to help families affected by autism.

    Mr. President, please light it up blue to bring more attention to this very important cause. As the mother of a 14 year old son on the autism spectrum, I am all too aware of the work that needs to be done – research, education, and planning to help my son function well in this world and for this world to understand, accept, and embrace the remarkable person he is. Please do the right thing.

  15. Pingback: The Blues « Autism Mommy-Therapist

  16. Dear Mr. President,
    I hope you will join forces with us and light up your house blue on April 2nd. We need your support. We love our children as fiercely as you and your wife love your girls. Autism has reached epidemic proportions and the chances of it one day impacting on your life are growing. We need help. We need support. We NEED you to light up your house blue WITH us.
    Please show your support.
    I voted for you because I really truly believed in you (as opposed to how I almost always voted in the past – for the person I hope will do the least amount of damage during their term).
    Please reinforce my faith that I made the correct decision. For the sake of my child and all of the families (1 in 110 and ONE IN EIGHTY-EIGHT MILITARY FAMILIES) who live with autism, please show your support. We need it now.
    Thank you for reading (I hope).

  17. Thank you soooo very much for writing such a beautiful letter to him! We all hope that just him shining those blue lights will help us all in explaining to the world our children with autism. We all know everyday how many people REALLY don’t know what it is! How they look at our beautiful children and at us in disbelief of ‘how they act in public”. How we feel the need to explain ourselves and our children of how they can’t help it. How we have to hide our tears from our children and the world. For us to be stronger people then we ever thought possible. We would do anything for them! Thank you!

  18. Pingback: » Mrs. Obama, Jess still needs a little help. We all still need a little help. We need one- just one light bulb changed in your “home” from white to blue. From one mom to anther mom. Can you help? Redefining Typical

  19. Pingback: April is Autism Awareness Month | Life is a Roller Coaster

  20. Pingback: Autism Awareness Month « Autism Mommy-Therapist

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