Please don’t dismiss Kucinich

Julie Forsmith is a psychotherapist in private practice and a member of the Butte College faculty.

Encouraged by your article of May 20 about Rep. Dennis Kucinich ["The liberals’ liberal,” Newslines], who is running for the Democratic nomination for president, I went to a friend and mentor of mine, James Baraz, who has seen Kucinich in person. I want to share, with his permission, his observations with your readers.

“It’s the first time I can remember hearing someone in government speak passionately, straight from his heart, communicating truth wisely and compassionately. Dennis spoke about creating a Department of Peace, of rejoining the world community as an important but caring member of a global family. He eloquently spoke of our need to understand the truth of our interconnectedness and interdependence with all peoples and life on this planet. He said that instead of creating more fear in the world it is our responsibility to address the suffering we’ve created through a policy based on greed and domination. He talked about using much of the $400 billion we now spend on weapons and defense for education, universal health care, a clean environment and addressing the many inequities our present system thrives on. He said that he knows there are many millions in our country who say with bewilderment, ‘I can’t believe the direction this country is going in.’

“Dennis’ words were like an oasis in a vast desert. They were not contrived. He used no notes. He is bright and articulate. He responded to questions from the audience spontaneously with the ring of truth that everyone listening knew was coming from a place of deep caring. He encouraged everyone to join him in repairing the American dream, in feeling inspired once again at what this country can be. I’m writing to you to let you know there is someone in our government who is not just another politician.

“Dennis decided to become a candidate after a speech he gave was put on the Internet. He received 20,000 emails urging him to consider running for president. Although he doesn’t have a big campaign chest, he holds a vision of hope and inspiration that millions are longing to hear. In this new electronic world there is a potential for swift communication on a grassroots level that never existed before.”

In conclusion, I want to ask the CN&R and its readers to take Kucinich’s platform into serious consideration. I am aware that Kucinich will have a difficult time getting his message out there in our time of "speed and greed," but that is all the more reason for us to tune in and take action. I am heartened that Kucinich is running for public office, feel privileged to support him and encourage others to do the same.