By Megan Kelley
LAKE ORION — It’s like the late singer Whitney Houston said, “I believe the children are our future.” And while it isn’t necessarily expected of them, they have their own views of the world. They might not be able to vote, but they can still use their voices to make change.
One of the children using their voice to try and make a positive change is nine-year-old Annie Key.
Annie, a third grader from Webber Elementary School, recently showed everyone that despite obstacles like age, you can still make a difference and make your voice heard after she wrote a letter to President Joe Biden about ocean pollution.
“I wrote about how turtles and polar bears are losing their lives every day because humans keep polluting the ocean,” Annie said.
Annie is a big fan of turtles and is a founding member of her school’s Save the Turtles group, a group made up of her friends who spend recess drawing turtles on the blacktop and spreading messages on how turtles need to be protected.
“I have been encouraging people to help turtles a lot since I’ve gotten the letter because it really inspired me to know that I can actually help,” Annie said. “We can stop polluting the ocean and try to tell people that anybody can change the world if they try hard enough, and that’s what we want them to do.”
Other than the turtles, Annie also suggested Biden provide some additional support to the Ukraine.
“I was also talking about how the Ukraine right now, how they could use some support right now. In the week after I wrote it to him, that actually did happen, he went to Ukraine. So, I was really excited,” said Annie.
After sending the letter, Annie waited, hoping for a response, and then one day a couple of weeks ago she went to her mailbox and found a response from Biden himself waiting for her.
“The other day I opened my mailbox, it had been a while since I wrote the letter and I wasn’t really expecting something, although I do always hope when I get to my mailbox that there’s something in there, and I pulled it out and I started screaming and my neighbor looked at me like I was a total weirdo but I kept screaming,” she said.
In his response, Biden told Annie he was going to try and make a difference when it comes to ocean pollution.
“He said that him and Vice President (Kamala) Harris were really proud and how he is going to try and help change it,” Annie said.
“Thank you for writing to me about the environment. Vice President Harris and I are so proud of you for taking a stand to help protect the planet,” Biden wrote. “I know that you have a bright future ahead. Study hard. Keep challenging yourself. And be good.”
Annie said she hopes her story can inspire others to be conscious of pollution and to take steps to do better and change the world for the good.
By Megan Kelley