Dear Mr. President,
The announcement that the US is going to resume off-shore oil drilling is truly disappointing. It is difficult to see this concession to the right as anything other than a political ploy to avert the 'disaster' of public discontentment at a coming rise in oil prices. Mr. President, you know that off-shore drilling will not change the basic reality that we use too much oil and that it will one day run out. We have to find viable alternatives and the majority of Americans will not support the endeavor to find such alternatives unless the price of oil goes up. We simply do not act unless it is in our immediate interest to do so, and I don't think it is unrealistically cynical to believe that the political will of much of America is more directly related to present economic realities than it is to our long term best interests.
If this move is, in reality, an attempt to demonstrate the urgency for energy alternatives by showing Americans that off-shore drilling won't alleviate rising oil prices quickly or significantly enough, or to preemptively combat the idea that your administration isn't exhausting all of our options, than I am sorry that the cost of such a strategy is so high. Instead of turning to a quick and simple solution (which, we both know, is no solution at all) we ought to be telling the hard truths; our current system in unsustainable. Our public works, agricultural and transportation systems are too important to depend on a resource that will not last. Either the systems or their dependence must be changes. This will be far less popular than continuing to tear through the Atlantic ocean in hopes of extending our fix a few more years, but future generations will never forgive us if we do not do these difficult things now, before it is too late.