A letter to the president

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on August 4, 2009

The Colbath’s are missionaries living in Honduras. Their take on wannabe strongman and ex-president Manuel Zelaya is similar to that of a friend of mine reported in returning from a short-term missions trip last month.

What follows is a letter sent to President Obama by the Colbath’s daughter, Hannah, and forwarded to me by a family friend. I have verified that the letter was in fact written by Hannah and her parents have approved my posting of here.

                                                                                                      Hannah Colbath

                                                                                                      Siguatepeque, Honduras

                                                                                                      July 16, 2009

President Barack Obama,                                                             

I am Hannah Colbath, and I live in Siguatepeque, Honduras. I am 15 years old and I am a citizen of the United States of America. My family has obtained Honduran residency.  We serve in Honduras as missionaries, operating a boys home, providing homes for single mothers, and a farm.  I do not want to storm at you or rant my opinion. I simply want to state the view of many here and to do it without blowing anything out of proportion.

Here are some things that I hope you will consider.

  • Mr. Zelaya has been in close contact with Hugo Chavez before, and now.
  • Mr. Zelaya is involved in many illegal and corrupt actions here, including drug trafficing.
  • The Honduran Congress acted in the best interest of the country and in the perameters of the law and constitution here in Hondruas. 
  • There was not a military coup, the military simply aided the government.. 
  • If Mr. Zelaya was to be put back into place as president, the United States would be known as the main people that helped him to be restored. Considering the history of Cuba, would you like to be known as the person who helped years from now?
  • Why do you think Mel is so intent on getting back into office when his term ends this year?
  • Mr. Zelaya tried to install himself as basically a dictator and the Honduran Congress went in to remove him before Honduras became another Cuban Communist country.
  • Mr. Zelaya  maintains that he is for the poor people of Honduras. There was recently a wage increase made law by Mr. Zelaya.  Very many poor people were laid off from all the factories, so many poor are jobless because of this. If he just wants to help the poor, why would he do this?
  • Some of the rioters we have talked to explained that they just wanted Mel Zelaya back so that the election in November can continue.  This shows that they do not understnd the process and the law here. 
  • A lot of people say they want Mr. Zelaya back because he was for the poor people. Has anyone ever asked them what Mr. Zelaya has done for them? Consider the almost weekly teacher strikes because they have not been paid. They hurt the children's education. If you walk into a typical mountain school, you will find many of them have no books and no support. If you think that the public school is free, think again. The poor families have to buy numerous books, uniforms, shoes, upkeep for the school, and the teachers are constantly asking the parents for money. So many children do not make it to sixth grade because of this. The majority of the nation's children are in the mountains and are uneducated. Mr. Zelaya was for the poor? 

I hope you consider these things. If you have strong beliefs for Mr. Manuel Zelaya being put back into office, I would like to know what they are. Thank you for your time in reading this, if you do. I know that you must have a lot to deal with and I appreciate your time.


Hannah Colbath

Don’t expect this to be one of the carefully selected letters that President Obama is given to read. It seems that too often those on the left like the idea of “humanity,” but individual humans not so much.


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August 2009



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