Tuesday, February 28, 2017

An Open Letter to Donald J. Trump. (I don't think he read it.)

I mailed this to Donald Trump Feb. 2nd. I don't think he read it.

President Donald Trump
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave
Washington DC

Dear President Trump,

Thank you for taking the time to read my letter, sir.
All Americans want you to succeed in your goals in strengthening our economy and security.

As a left-leaning person (socially liberal, fiscally conservative) living for a long time in a right-leaning state, I have learned the correct answer is always somewhere towards the center of any argument. However, so few political figures seem to be able to bring people there. Meeting in the middle is crucial to bridging the huge divide currently having a negative impact on our citizens. So far your administration seems intent on maintaining and promoting the divide between our citizens, for what reasons I am not sure.

I know your previous career thrived on ratings-boosting controversy, unrehearsed off-the-cuff dialog and thrilling unknowns. It may take some time to adjust away from this mindset. The Presidency, sir, requires a different touch than Reality TV or the WWF. We Americans cannot live in this heightened state of concern and nervousness daily. We thrive on stability and calm.
Though I did not vote for you, I know many who did including my loved ones and people I respect. I  have been willing to give you a chance and sending positive thoughts for your success.

My concern is that you don’t seem to be taking some aspects of this job as seriously as you should. Your recent speech for Black History Month, for example, struck many as particularly un-researched, unprofessional and insulting (as you interjected insults about the press, and referred back to yourself and the election).
Everything you say carries tremendous weight and should convey greatness.

Everything you say will be permanently etched in history, sir. Please give a bit more thought to the things you say. Americans like your lack of rehearsed dialog, but often times it also seems there is no substance behind it—like a student giving a report on something he did not study and instead just filling the air with circular logic and repetition. You can have the extemporaneous “natural” style, but you still need to have something of substance behind it. Otherwise it rings phony and hollow.
Please give the Americans who did not cast their vote for you the opportunity to appreciate your efforts.

Attacking the press, attacking individuals and companies, and making a point to take away established civil liberties (including the rights of green card holders, vetted immigrants and LGBT citizens, as well as women’s reproductive rulings) is not making America great “again”. Endangering our environment and threatening our beautiful and treasured public lands does not make America great “again.”

The press is a crucial part of the government’s “checks-and-balances”, just as Congress is. While the truth may not always reflect on you well, instead of trying to quash it with “alternative facts”, perhaps think about how the truth can work in your favor because you are honestly doing great things. Do great things, sir, and there will be no reason to hide the truth.

In addition, when you overreact to insults, questions of your policies or satire you draw more attention to the lampooning taking place, and also come across as thin-skinned and weak. Saturday Night Live has lampooned political figures for more than 40 years and you are the first to have reacted against it in this manner. (The really savvy folks get in on the joke.)

You’re not really giving folks a chance to appreciate you when you behave this way, sir. I wish you the very best in your years as President and hope you are able to accomplish important goals, but also relinquish the negative goals that may be detrimental to our nation’s strengths and diversity.
Our diversity, both in population and wilderness, is crucial to our success on this planet. The future is sustainable, not based in 19th and 20th century fossil fuels, a finite supply and an old technology. There is money to be made in sustainable energy.

I love your idea of Americans building things in America and buying American. I have supported local business for decades. Many so called “liberals” like me support and shop local business.

One last comment, as an Arizona resident:
Rather than build an expensive and difficult-to-engineer wall over extremely challenging southwestern and riparian geography, it would be better to invest more in personnel and technology to patrol the border. We have amazing surveillance technology available to us in the 21st century, so why opt for a concept as ancient as a wall?  Of course you understand a large part of our “issues” with Mexico is actually the United States’ insatiable appetite for illegal drugs and cheap labor. If we did not have this demand, our problems with Mexico would abate.

President Trump, please do what’s best for peace and prosperity in our country.
Our economy remaining healthy is just as important as our planet, our freedoms and our citizens remaining healthy. There must be a balance.
We must meet in the middle, as a nation.
Our nation is depending on you, sir.

Best regards,

Ellen Jo Roberts
Clarkdale, AZ