1. Fanficlover
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    Fanficlover Member

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    Open Letter to President Obama

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Fanficlover, Dec 9, 2010.

    I want to write an open letter to President Obama about many kinds of subject, such as an idea for the future of USA and something that can or might work for today's issues. Should it be like perfect, or just write plain and simple? How would I write it anyway?
     
  2. darthjim
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    darthjim Member

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    Sorry to be the cynic here, but, seeing how there's next to no chance of him ever reading it, I wouldn't worry too much about tone or complexity.
     
  3. jo spumoni
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    jo spumoni Active Member

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    I like the notion of making it plain and simple. Since it's an "open letter", you should write for the average concerned citizen, and the average citizen doesn't like a lot of frills or rhetoric, they like pragmatic, concrete ideas written in plain language explained logically. But this doesn't mean your job will be any easier; on the contrary, writing simply and plainly is actually difficult to do well. You should know your stuff very well and argue coherently. Best of luck.
     
  4. R-e-n-n-a-t
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    R-e-n-n-a-t Contributing Member

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    Perfect, but moving, like a speech. Most people don't know perfect grammar, so to stand out, use what you've learned as a writer.

    Also, keep in mind that the president s very busy, and you may have to send the letter several times before he reads it.

    Edit---------------------

    If he ever reads it
     
  5. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    If you want to tell him about an issue, you'd have a better chance calling an office...not that you'd have a likely chance of speaking with Obama himself, but one of his aides or someone would have to talk to you about the issue once you get through. If you send a letter, it might just get discarded. Be polite but also assertive and consistent; sometimes political offices take a while to get back to you. The bigger and more federal the office, the longer it will take them. (I've called political offices before to use them as news sources - never called the President though!)
     
  6. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    You can contact his office online at http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact. And you will get an e-mail response, signed by Obama. But it will likely be a form response, and it will take forever to get it.
     
  7. Holden
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    Holden Senior Member

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    You're better off contacting a representative or Senator. The likely chance is, your words will never be read by the President.

    However, in terms of writing to an elected official with an open letter, keep it simple. Stay away from an angry rant or a Dickens-esque flourish of words. Present ideas in a way they can be easily understood, with as many examples and facts are you have.
     
  8. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    One other thing. In re-reading your initial post, it sounds like you have a very wide-ranging kind of statement in mind. As someone who has done advocacy work for years, I can tell you this will never get you very far. The most successful messages are very specific - one issue, a clear-cut choice, and a very clear case for the course of action you are advocating.

    Politicians love to talk in generalities when they are campaigning, but their decisions are made on case-specific facts. Your message should be short, simple, and supported by lots of facts. Otherwise, it's just noise to these guys.
     
  9. SashaMerideth
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    SashaMerideth Contributing Member

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    The idea behind an open letter is that it is addressed to the recipient, but the tone addresses a genral audience. He may read it, he may not, but that's not the goal of an open letter.
     
  10. Trilby
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    Trilby Contributing Member Contributor

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    Aren't open letters published in newspapers.
    If you ask questions about topical issues that the man in the street is asking, but, getting no answers. If you have sound ideas on how to solve some of his proplems then have a go.
    Look at what the journalist are saying and if you give a paper what it is looking for, you may find a one willing to publish your letter.
     
  11. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    an 'open letter' is not sent to the person you're addressing... it's only meant to be published in the op-ed or letters to the editor section of a newspaper/magazine, or in a paid ad...

    as for how to write it, that's up to you... you can write it as an essay in perfect grammar, etc., or as a personal letter with all of your own idiosyncracies... or any other way you like...

    the purpose of writing an 'open letter' over a 'closed' one is that the one you send to a famous person has literally no chance of them reading it, while an 'open' one will be called to his/her attention, if it's published in a well-known-enoughvenue that assures it will draw significant attention to be noticed by that person's 'minions'...
     
  12. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Also, an open letter is public in order to invite discussion by people other than the nominative addressee.
     
  13. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    yup!... that, too...
     

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