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What would you do if you were the president?

I was listening to a local call-in radio program a few weeks ago. The topic was “What would you do if you were president?” I wanted to call in, but I was unclear as to what I would do.

A lot of my first reactions came from a place of anger. I know that anger is not an emotion that a president should base decisions on. I also knew that it would take time to really consider what I would do.

I have spent the last few weeks thinking about what I would do as president. I gathered information from many different sources, and I came up with what I would do. I started to ask why, because I realized I didn’t know enough to make an informed decision.



I asked about why have the Palestinians and the Israelis been fighting? What I gathered was that Israel had invaded Palestine and that the two had been fighting about it ever since. Then I found out that the United States has been supporting Israel in their fight for many years. I am unclear as to why we would support Israel and not Palestine. Maybe someone out there could write in and explain why.

I feel that it is important for us to find out what the root of the problem is so we can make an informed opinion not based on anger and fear. It did become clear to me why Palestinians grew to dislike the United States. Then it became clear to me why some Palestinians would turn their hatred and anger toward the United States.




When I realized this, I also began to realize what I would do as president. I would stop supporting the Israelis militarily. I would realize that by supporting only one side, I would be putting United States citizens in danger, along with all the other innocent civilians affected by this current situation. I would only be fueling the hatred in the world.

I would choose to support both Palestine and Israel in working together to ultimately find peace. I would encourage them to leave religion out of their peace process and remind them that fundamentally all religions say to love one another and to find compassion in your heart.

I would pull out the troops who are currently stationed abroad, and I would replace them with peacekeepers who would be willing to mediate between both sides and who were dedicated to supporting both sides in coming up with a solution to the problem, rather then throwing fuel on the fire.

I would then dismantle all the United States’ nuclear armaments, because I would realize that demanding that other countries do what we are not willing to do is wrong. I would encourage all countries to do the same, and I would work with these countries to help them accomplish a world without the threat of nuclear war so we all can truly no longer live in fear.

I know that at this point there are a lot of you thinking that I’m probably just some “hippie peace-loving scum,” and I respect your feelings. After all, we all are entitled to our opinion. All I’m asking is that we try and make our opinions based on understanding and respect, not on quick anger and fear-based assumptions.

I’m new to politics, and I feel that there are a lot of people like me out there who are also new. It seems that a lot of us make up our minds based on current news coverage, on what is happening now. The news never fills us in as to why a problem started.

It’s up to the elders to start sharing what they know because they are the foundation. It’s up to us, the children, to start asking and making informed opinions so that we can stop living in fear and anger.

I’ve lost respect for my elders who are running this great country. It’s time for them to earn that respect and stand up as truthful, compassionate leaders. Give us someone we can respect who will do the same in return. Let’s all start gathering knowledge based on truth and compassion, so that when we share with others, our opinion is true and honest.

I encourage everyone to think, “What would you do if you were president?” I challenge you to come at this question without the clouded mind of anger. Write about it, and talk to your friends and your kids about it.

Tobin Robinson lives in Nevada City.


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