My Dear American Friends, 1st October 2013
by Kazeem Olalekan

Must we shut down the whole government infrastructure over an issue which can only be resolved with honest dialogue? I don’t know much about anything but this is an issue I know a little bit about. I have walked the journey with you from across the pond and will like to make a contribution or two to an issue which stirs your passion and mine.

For those who missed it, this link will explain why once again, I find myself here. I promised, after all, to ‘keep track of the progress of your healthcare bill’.


How did we get here?


We got here through a long, winding road. Something akin to your Pacific Coast Highway in California. It is an exciting journey filled with so many surprises, intrigues and at times danger. It was our honeymoon trip many years ago which started in the city of Angels and ended in San Francisco. We stopped over in Monterey, spent 3 nights in San Francisco and headed for the Yosemite National Park. That was a journey that made a lasting imprint in my mind.


This is not, however, a travelogue! We are here today because the GOP failed to engage productively with the Obamacare bill. That is in the past now and you punished the GOP for placing pollical calculation over the interest of your fellow citizens. I guess the GOP now wished, deep down, that it had showed up at critical moments. It didn't and the die was cast. I happen to think that when the GOP does decide to truly show up, it can actually improve the bill but not in this way!


My personal view is that the Obamacare bill must pass as it is and over time, it will evolve - with the help of a GOP, that is fully engaged with a process of improving the bill in a very bipartisan way. That will start a healing process which will cleanse your legislative houses of these deep divisions which is threatening to tear the house down! Remember, a house divided against itself cannot stand.


No political party has a monopoly on truth and all must embrace changes that will work for your fellow citizens.


My advise is that all parties quit this 'game' of brinkmanship and show leadership. Pass the funding bill as is, and get everyone back to work. Evolution of the bill will come later. There is San Francisco ahead and we all know how dramatic and exhilarating the landscape is there. The landscape took my breadth away. After that, it is Yosemite - with the tranquillity of the high altitude and the mesmerizing granite cliffs, waterfalls, Giant Sequoia groves and biological diversity. Our time there was so memorable that I felt heaven was near. It was tranquility personified - and that is the future ahead, if we do the right things.

Best Wishes

from A friend indeed.

Watch out for:
‘A Social Experiment – An Open Letter to Americans’
It is the story of this experiment