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Open Letter To Bernie Sanders From A Formerly Homeless American: Don’t Blame Elon Musk For American Poverty

Dear Senator Sanders:

I want to start this by thanking you for your work — you stand up to racism, hate, and bigotry and we have very similar values. Your voice champions those who are in poverty, reminding those in power that people like me, someone who was on and off the streets most of her childhood and some of her adult life due to poverty, matter to you.

And I appreciate that. I also appreciate the fact that you are an advocate for clean energy and fighting climate change. However, your stance on Elon Musk is something I don’t agree with and I hope that this letter finds its way to you.

Elon Musk is not the villain you are making him out to be. He’s actually a kind and decent human being who cares about those who are in poverty — as you do. However, he doesn’t owe you, me, or anyone his wealth. Yes, Elon has enormous wealth and unlike many millionaires or billionaires out there who buy private islands and disappear to live the good life, Elon has dedicated his wealth to the side of good.

That side includes helping people. Elon Musk signed the Giving Pledge, which is a promise to donate half of his fortune to charity back in 2012 back, when he was worth $2 billion.

Your tweet, Mr. Sanders, implies that Elon shouldn’t use his money, which he earned legally and by inspiring others rather than coercing them, as he sees best.

In your tweet, you dismiss his dream of space travel and imply that Elon Musk needs to solve the problem of homelessness and lack of healthcare in America. I agree with you that “The level of inequality in America is obscene and a threat to our democracy.” However, this problem has existed well before Elon Musk moved to America with only $2,000 to his name.

I think, Senator, that if you and Elon Musk were to have a private sit-down and if you actually took the time to hear him out, you would probably agree on a lot of things, such as the problems presented by climate change that Tesla is working so hard to help solve — via electric cars, electric trucks, solar panels, solar tiles, stationary energy storage systems, and probably more.

I’m a survivor of climate disasters. I live in Louisiana and we face them every year — hurricane season is no joke. Speaking of hurricanes, Elon Musk donated funds to my local area charities to help with hurricane relief. That money was for Hurricane Laura but since that was only one of about 3 or 4 (I honestly can’t remember) I’m sure that money along with the other amounts donated was stretched to help as many as possible.

The point of my letter is to say this: I admire your resolve, but Elon Musk isn’t responsible for solving homelessness or poverty just because he has wealth in the form of shares in his companies. I agree that wealth inequality is a thing, but Elon isn’t the only billionaire in America. Yes, you’ve gone after others, but lately, your tweets have been focused on Elon Musk and I think that is in part due to all the FUD surrounding him and Tesla that is making him out to be this horrible person.

Elon is the type to help when asked to do so. Getting on Twitter and saying what translates to your base as, “Elon rich, Elon bad,” isn’t the way to ask for help, however.

Let’s Find Solutions Instead Of Problems

Instead of blaming Americans who build their wealth from nothing and enjoy the benefits of the American dream, let’s try to find solutions that will actually help those living in poverty.

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Written By

Johnna Crider is a Louisiana native who likes crawfish, gems, minerals, EVs, and advocates for sustainability. Johnna is also the host of, a jewelry artisan and a $TSLA shareholder.


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