I’ve always held firmly the belief that an oppressor is a broken human and the only way to help heal their damaged soul is to respond to them with love and forgiveness, even if they don’t deserve it. On November 9th, after several hours of all-consuming rage followed by deep, horrible sorrow, I decided I needed to channel the belief I had followed my whole life. It was time to write Donald Trump a letter.
Dear President Trump,
First, I would like to congratulate you on your recent election victory. You have worked very hard during your campaign and the American people chose you to lead this country into the future. I am writing to you today to share hopes and dreams I have for your presidency—hopes and dreams I have for every president who walks through those doors and gets the privilege of representing this great country to the world.
I’ve had a lot of time to think about what I hope your presidency looks like, and I’ve decided that more important than what you accomplish are the lasting changes you make to the lives of young people and those who look to you for guidance and for help.
I hope that you are a kind president. I hope you forgive your enemies and you rise to every occasion with grace and with humility. I hope you will model for our children the understanding that a strong man will not throw insults at those he doesn’t like. That sometimes, kindness is harder and takes more courage to follow-through with. I hope they will remember you as the president who taught them that sometimes it is more important to be kind than to be right.
I hope you are a compassionate president, who knows that not everything that is fair will be equal. I hope you take mercy on families who are just getting by, on people who are sick, and on people who have been told all along that they are not welcome in their school, their town, their country. I hope you stand up against bullies and you protect us from the dangers of poverty, illness, and violence.
I hope you are a wise president. I hope you know the difference between equality and equity and that you will realize that women are not a topic of argument, but autonomous people who will govern their own bodies regardless of your opinion of it. I hope you will realize that what women need are less laws dictating what they can and cannot do for their own health, and more education and celebrations of their body. I hope you will remember which body part you came out of.
I hope you will be a loving president, one that models every kind of love through the kinds of love he allows. I hope you will show LGBTQ youth that their love is valid and good and beautiful by protecting their rights and doing everything in your power to lower teen suicide rates. I hope you empower our young people and make them feel like people every day of their lives.
I hope, most of all Mr. Trump, that you do a great job as our president. I hope you are remembered as one of the best presidents that we ever had in this country. I hope you remember us each morning that you wake up, and that we can be proud of all you do.