It’s Time to return power to the people!
Isiah James is running for Congress to create an America that works for all of us—not just the wealthy or well connected.
I am running for Congress in order to create a Brooklyn that works for us all not just a few. As a husband, disabled veteran, grass-roots community organizer, social justice advocate, mentor and the proud son of an immigrant family, I have spent my entire adult life in the service of others. I have fought on behalf of those who have had their voices drowned out by the wealthy and the powerful. The people of the 9th congressional district deserve to send their children to schools that will prepare them for the future, they deserve affordable housing and healthcare for all as a basic human right, a livable wage and a safe community in which to live, work, and raise their families. The people of the 9th congressional district deserve a member of Congress that has their best interest at heart, one whom won’t stop, who will never quit; a representative that truly is a champion for the people’s needs. They deserve a FIGHTER!
My father immigrated to Brooklyn with a fifth-grade education and the dream of a better life. Growing up in a Jamaican-American household as one of eleven children; I know the hardships that working-class families in Central Brooklyn face firsthand. Born in an immigrant family as one of eleven children, I attended public schools from the time I was in kindergarten right through graduate school. After the events of 9/11, I immediately enlisted in the Army and after completing basic training I was deployed in support of Operation Iraqi freedom and completed two separate tours of combat duty in Iraq as well as a tour of combat duty in Afghanistan. I was injured in combat while serving my country and because of my injuries, I was medically discharged from the military. My life was suddenly radically changed as a result of my service to our nation and now I faced a choice. I chose not to give up on myself.
I enrolled in school and earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Brooklyn College and I am currently finishing my Master of Public Administration degree at Baruch College. While in school, I worked tirelessly as an advocate for tenant rights, a community organizer around criminal justice reform and police accountability, as well as being a mentor to student veterans struggling with adjusting to the challenges of returning to civilian life.
As a resident of the Flatbush community, I have seen firsthand the struggles of my friends and neighbors. I have seen the deleterious effects of skyrocketing rent cost throughout this city. I have witnessed communities destroyed when big-money developers build luxury high-rises leading to the displacement of entire families. I have seen our immigrant neighbors living in fear of deportation from a racist and morally bankrupt Trump administration. I refuse to sit idly by and do nothing as this continues to happen in my community and in our country.
My near decade of decorated service and leadership to this nation while serving in the military and years of time spent as a community organizer and activist, have given me the moral clarity and the courage of my convictions to fight for what is right. Growing up, my family survived on public assistance, creating in me an advocate for a living wage of $15 an hour and affordable housing for all working-class families. I am the product of public-school education, which is why I believe in fully funding public education, reducing class sizes in K-12 classes, and empowering teachers to help shape the next generation. Doing this also means we must eliminate the crushing burden of student loan debt that many of our young people in this country incur just to have access to the halls of higher education; that means fighting for 100% tuition-free, quality education at all public universities and colleges in this country.
Like millions of my fellow Americans, my family members have pre-existing conditions and like millions of Americans; my family struggles to pay their medical bills, that’s what drives my belief in single-payer healthcare in the form of Medicare for all. Because in a country as rich and as prosperous as ours, no person should ever have to make the choice of paying their rent or buying medication for a sick loved one. On all these issues and more, I truly believe that I have not only a moral obligation to fight for the betterment of those I love and those in my community, but a duty to do so.
Why I am Running
Central Brooklyn and America, for that matter, is at a tipping point. Housing has become unaffordable for so many of our friends and families, displacing entire communities; our families are stretched to the limit, shelling out more and more just to keep a roof over their heads all while wages remain stagnant, meaning less and less take-home pay. Central Brooklyn is a community of immigrants, immigrants like my father; who are under the constant fear of deportation and family separation from the current administration. While millions of people in this country are denied the basic human right of healthcare for themselves and their families, politicians are taking money from corporate lobbyists and major corporations, making them beholden to the wealthy and powerful while working people that truly deserve help are left to fend for themselves.
I will bring the voices and needs of hard-working Central Brooklynites to the Capitol in order to fight for a community and a country that is more representative of us all. Together we can build a stronger Brooklyn, together we can build a better tomorrow for our children and our families. Together we can shape a future in which no one is left out; a future in which no one is left to fend for themselves. Together we can create a community of inclusiveness and shared prosperity, and do away with a rigged system in which more and more wealth is funneled to those at the top or those in positions of power. Together we can be a nation that welcomes those seeking refuge at our shores......Together......We can return the Power to the People!
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