Tell the president — and the rest of us — your priorities

Here’s an opportunity to send a message to President Barack Obama on the eve of his second term, and to share it with the local community.

We invite you to write a letter to the president, telling him your hopes, warnings, priorities, praise and/or criticism – whatever you think he needs to hear as he begins another four years as our nation’s chief executive. We’ll publish these letters on Saturday, Jan. 19, the day before he takes the oath of office and two days before his inauguration ceremonies. We’ll also submit them to the White House.

We hope to get letters from kids as well as adults. Feel free to send art along as well; we’ll try to publish it, too.

We hope we get a lot of letters – so many we have trouble dealing with them all. We look forward to seeing how they represent the big-picture priorities of people up here.

Of course, the president gets all kinds of feedback, so the chance of him changing anything based on the opinions of a relatively small number of Adirondackers is extraordinarily slim. Also, you can easily submit comments to him yourself without going through us. (Click “Contact” at the bottom of, call 202-456-1111, or write – you probably know the address by heart: The White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20500.) But we see this as primarily a local thing. Here you can go on record before your neighbors with your message for Mr. Obama in his second term. It’s therapeutic, it’s interesting, it embodies the spirit of democracy, and even if it doesn’t directly sway the president, it is likely to influence others who can make a difference. For instance, we are sure Congress members and state and local lawmakers will read it and may even pass it on in their circles.

Since we expect to publish a lot of these letters, we must require that you keep each one short – no more than 200 words, and preferably fewer than 150. Otherwise, our regular guidelines for letters to the editor apply. Send them to Managing Editor Peter Crowley by email at, by mail to P.O. Box 318, Saranac Lake, NY 12983, or drop them off at 54 Broadway. Please put “Letter to the president” in the subject line or on the envelope.

We look forward to reading and publishing what you have to say to President Obama.