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Letters to President Obama


Bobby Ingram, Oxford, Mississippi

April 16, 2009

Mister Obama - My President,

In 2007 I was proud of my hands. They had veneered calluses where my palms touched my fingers. Cuts and scrapes were never severe. Splinters and blisters merely annoyed me. With a vise-like grip and dextrous touch my hands were heat tolerant and cold ignorant. I was nimble when whittling or when sharpening an axe. I could exfoliate with an open palm when my wife's back itched or my cat arched for a rub. My nails were usually stained after a chore; they were tougher, not cracked, seldom manicured. My hands defined my work, passions, my life. 

After 23 years as a land surveyor and nearly 2 years unemployed, I miss my career and my old hands. I kneel nights and clutch new hands together, praying we all can recover what seems lost. May God guide your hands to mould over our future. 

Thank you for listening to the Citizen I am, 

Bobby Ingram

The President's Response

Bobby - 

Thanks for the powerful letter. I'm working as hard as I can to make sure that hard-working Americans like you have the opportunities you so richly deserve. 

Barack Obama