Letter to the editor: Bernie

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Sanders in 2016

By Hanna Pollock (I just emailed her about getting her year in school, major and hometown. We always include this in letters to the editor. 🙂 

Bernie Sanders holds the belief that government must implement humane policies, especially those regarding higher education and the perpetuation of equality. He embraces qualities necessary for representing the United States effectively, making him the best presidential candidate. 

A native of New York, Sanders first attended Brooklyn College and later the University of Chicago, earning a degree in political science. In 1981, he became mayor of Burlington, Vermont. Bernie’s leadership helped Burlington make strides in affordable housing, environmental protection, childcare, women’s rights and the arts. In 2006, he was elected to the U.S. Senate after serving 16 years as Vermont’s sole congressman in the House of Representatives. Bernie is now serving his second term in the Senate, having won re-election in 2012 with 71 percent of the vote.

Sanders’s proposed policies on higher education could open the gate for many young adults to pursue an education that once seemed impossible. Last year, Bernie told the Washington Post’s Harold Meyerson, “In 1978, it was possible to earn enough money to pay for a year of college tuition just by working a summer job that paid minimum wage. Today, it would take a minimum wage worker an entire year to earn enough to cover the annual in-state tuition at a public university. And that’s why so many bright young people don’t go to college, don’t finish or graduate deeply in debt.” 

President Bernie Sanders would implement his ‘College for All’ act. This policy will eliminate undergraduate tuition at public four-year institutions, cut student loan interest rates in half and expand the number of students participating in the federal Work-Study program. “We have to make sure that every qualified American in this country who has the ability and desire to go to college is able to go to college, regardless of the income of his or her family,” he said. 

High-income families often find sending their kids to college easier than middle- or lower-class families. If America stands as a country truly based on equality, every citizen seeking a higher education should be able to attain one without incurring damage to their bank accounts. 

Sanders’s belief in equality makes him the best candidate regarding women’s rights. “We are not returning to the days of back-room abortions, when countless women died or were maimed. The decision about abortion must remain a decision for the woman, her family and physician to make, not the government.” 

Nearly half of all women who choose to get abortions live in poverty, and by implementing Sanders’s plan to reduce the number of Americans living in poverty, the rate of abortions would decrease. Sanders supports Planned Parenthood along with 2.7 million Americans who use its healthcare (not including abortion) services each year. Sanders also believes that American women should have full access to birth control, unlike many Senate Republicans who favor giving health insurance companies the ability to deny coverage for contraception.  

 Sanders recognize the seriousness of domestic and sexual violence women experience in the United States. In August 1994, he voted for the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which authorized $1.6 billion toward investigating and prosecuting violent crimes against women. Since the VAWA passed, criminal incidents of domestic violence of this sort have dropped more than 50 percent. In addition, Sanders co-sponsored a bill that renewed the previous VAWA and added additional provisions to protect LGBT victims, to increase access to justice for victims on Native American reservations and to expand protection for immigrant victims. 

Sanders recognizes that America is a country built upon immigrants and encourages the idea of supporting individuals who try to escape persecution and create better lives for their loved ones. As Bernie told PoliticusUSA, “American immigration policy should be about uniting families, not separating families.” Sanders’s DREAM act, which focused on giving young, high-achieving, undocumented immigrants a pathway to permanent residency in the United States (provided they pursue higher education or serve two years in the military), presents a great way to strengthen this country while giving undocumented youths a chance to become permanent residents in the place they call home. 

Sanders’s passionate beliefs ensure the perpetuation and expansion of social justice throughout the United States. Breaking down barriers to inequality that still present themselves, he will bolster American culture by improving everyday society. As the longest serving independent in congressional history, Sanders possesses more than enough experience—and compassion—needed to become great leader. 

This is triple the length letters should be. You’ll either need to cut it down dramatically, ask her to revise, or treat it more like a guest writer piece.
I think treating like a guest writer piece would be the best bet. I think asking her to cut it down to 400-500 words would be better though. Getting more of her actual opinion (which is in there) and less of a recitation of Sander’s achievements would read better