Pete Buttigieg Won’t Invest in Ghost Trains

Dear [First Name],

Our country has failed us. Constantly, federal and state transportation funding favors automobiles—highway expansions for single-driver commutes, parking lots, surrounding forests and landscapes cleared for construction of toll lanes. Same with airline bailouts and tax cuts. Too few dollars go to further developing our public transportation and addressing the climate impact of our changing world, including through expanded train lines and more equitable bus routes. So what are citizens supposed to do when they don’t have a car, or when they want to affordably visit family in another state, or when they need to travel to the witch Zeniba’s house to return the magic golden seal that was stolen from her to break a curse?

Here’s what they’re keeping from you: Imagine the gentle, quiet hiss of train wheels skimming through shallowly submerged tracks as you pass across a vast, glistening body of water, your gauzy fellow ghost passengers looking on from the clean wooden benches around you. The ticket doesn’t cost a thing, because it’s a gift from your workplace manager. Or the quick bounding of a cat-bus transporting you over hills and grassy fields to the other side of town, unrestricted by roads or traffic on highways. Or a candle-powered toy boat, magically grown to fit an adult rider (or two children), quietly puttering across clear ocean water above the sunken town—a perfect solution to our increasingly flood-prone coastal infrastructures.

However, our current U.S. Secretary of Transportation has refused to invest any federal dollars in such magical transportation services that are responsive to our times and reflective of our needs. That’s why we are urging you, [First Name], to sign our petition calling for immediate federal action to support our public transportation crisis. 

Please also forward this petition to your friends and families, your community members, your bathhouse members, your river spirits and susuwatari, and so on. We are counting on you.

Sign now: [Insert Link to Petition]

Joey Hedger is author of the novel Deliver Thy Pigs (Malarkey Books) and the chapbook In the Line of a Hurricane, We Wait (Red Bird Chapbooks). He currently lives in Alexandria, Virginia, and his writing can be found at His Twitter handle is @joey_hedger

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *