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The Courage to Speak Up for the Underrepresented

When Lauren, a six-year U.S. Navy veteran from Centerville, Virginia, backs a leader, she’s looking for a president who is not only competent in foreign and military affairs, but also courageous enough to speak up for underrepresented Americans. For her, this person is President Obama.

Lauren, who just graduated with a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling from James Madison University, sees the difference President Obama has made for everyday Americans.

“As a woman and a veteran, it’s very clear that he’s working very hard to protect all Americans,” Lauren said. “In the field of mental health, I’ve seen that directly through changes brought on by health care reform and increased funding for the Veterans Affairs Administration.”

Under President Obama, major funding to better the care of veterans, through the passing of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act in 2009, paved the way for increased resources for mental health care, and decreased waiting periods for claims. “These are changes for the better, and I appreciate him working hard to improve things,” she said.

Lauren, married and in her thirties, backs President Obama on his recent announcement on his support of gay marriage. During the time Lauren served in the Navy, she remembered what she called “an archaic policy” that was Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. “We’ve all served with people we knew were gay or lesbian,” she said. “With the repeal of this law, I’m happy that it’s no longer something we have to sweep under the rug; they don’t have to hide that. As long as you’re a good sailor or marine, who you love doesn’t matter.”

Back to the issue of gay marriage, Lauren said, “President Obama didn’t have to announce his support for gay marriage, but he did anyway, and that shows real leadership.”

On Thursday, we're officially launching Veterans and Military Families for Obama with veterans like Lauren and special guest Beau Biden. Click here to sign up for this special occasion.

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