Column by Sam Rasoul
All of us have hit rough bumps along the road. Growing up in a working-class family, sometimes carrying the burden of bringing home the presents for the family during the holidays, convinced me a teen-ager should not have to take on such responsibilities.
In perspective, though, my challenges growing up are trivial compared to the real problems so many around the world, and even in our local communities, face every day. The stories I have heard in my year of campaigning for Congress in Southwest Virginia would humble the worst of complainers.
The hardships of our world make many of us into cynics, constantly wondering why the proverbial glass is half-empty. Complaining is so easy and cynicism can become second nature to those “stuck” in the routine of life, just trying to get through each day.
America needs a reason to believe why we can accomplish the improbable. Just as “ask what you can do for your country” landed humans on the moon, our country needs a reason to believe again.
Our grassroots movement over the past year is larger than any one election or than my candidacy alone. My values guide me to a commitment that delivers a positive message full of reasons why we can be practical idealists. This practical idealism gave birth to a nation yearning for freedoms and justice for all.
Elections and candidates will come and go. Hopes and dreams built overnight into tall peaks can be swept away by a flood of corruption, selfishness and power scavenging.
I believe it important for me to stay steadfast in my convictions to deliver a positive vision that sees an America 50 years from now with a generation that can promise a prosperous future for their children. This American spirit is why we love our country so much, and though the temptation of negativism that pervades our political arena will sometimes whisper in my ear, I will not, and must not, allow that darkness to pull me in the wrong direction.
While others will most surely use negative tactics against me now and in the future, I owe it to the citizens of our great Republic to remain a carrier of truth, an explorer of knowledge, and a champion for justice.
Sam Rasoul is a candidate for the Sixth District Democratic Party congressional nomination.