Felicitas and Gonzalo Mendez High School

My second presidential term

He sits alone in front of his desk. His term is about to come to an end.  It has been almost 4 years now, but it feels like a lifetime to him. He is tired. You can see it in his face; he has aged and has been hardened by the responsibilities that have been forced upon him in office.  He reflects on the events that have lead to this moment. What has he done for his nation?

He looks around the room into the walls of the oval office; he feels drained, and, to his own surprise, happiness and a sense of peace that the end had come. He ponders on the thought of running again. He is unsure now. When he first ran, his platform was idealistic, but now he realizes that the changes he wished to make in government and society are unlikely to occur.

He recalls the feeling of great disappointment and disillusion when he failed to bring free education at the university level to the nation. He remembers as a child growing up in Los Angeles, California, surrounded by poverty and wealth. It was an interesting environment.  He was able to witness the wealthy and their way of living through his father, who was a principal at a high school and knew many upper class people.

He saw poverty, however…

through a more personal level,

through his peers,

through his friends, who in some cases had to work before finishing high school to help support their families,

through their struggles in schools.

This always disturbed him…

seeing such a great wealth gap between rich and poor,

seeing his colleagues and friends have to end their educational path short for the simple fact that it was impossible for them to afford college,

seeing all the advantages the wealthy had and the poor were denied.

And why wasn’t he able to achieve this goal? Because of the politicians who refused to accept change.  Bringing free education to the nation would have added an enormous amount of debt to the already greatly indebted nation and would cause the extinction of privatized school, both of which are very sudden and frightening modifications that not all people were ready to accept. Nevertheless, he believed without a single doubt in his mind that everyone deserved the option to continue their education at the university level; that one’s education should not be limited by income, not be only for the wealthy.

This change in society and government would have revolutionized the nation, and personally to the man, was the most important change he wished to make as president. I was that man. I am writing this now as I sit in my office and through writing this I have come to a realization.  I have rediscovered the reason I ran for office.  This is not the end for me and I now know I will run again.  By the end of my second term there will be free education at the university level.  That is the goal I set for myself and I will not fail. Besides my only competition in the election this year is a old, racist, white republican named Donald Trump… Yeah I’m going to win this election.

Writing by Mauro Bautista

Art by Alexia Sambrano

Join us February 16 as students perform their work live through spoken word, music, video and theatre on in Downtown LA. RSVP here