“Help with a Federal Agency”

Dear President Trump,

It’s interesting how the “Message Type” choices have shifted in the month or so that I’ve been contacting you every day. Initially the options were something like “Reflections for the President,” “Reflections for the Vice President,” “Reflections for the First Lady.” Then they were changed to “Contact the….” instead of “Reflections for….” but there were still the same different options for who to contact. Now it’s just contacting you or clicking on the oddly worded “Help with a Federal Agency.” What does “Help with a Federal Agency” mean? You’d think that for citizens contacting the White House the options would include something like “Help from a Federal Agency.” Maybe the current wording is intended to mean that people can ask for help trying to deal with a federal agency but it could also be asking which federal agency the citizen is willing to help with.

If that’s the case and you all are asking us which federal agencies we’d be willing to help with, I could give you a long list because, my goodness, most all of them seem to be in serious trouble now that your administration has taken over. Where to start? I’ve only got 2500 characters so there is no way to run through the list exhaustively but I would be happy to work with new head officials at the EPA on how to understand the basic methods of scientific inquiry. I would also be happy to help officials in the housing authority figure out to step out of their own Horatio Alger narrative so that they can learn from those they are supposed to serve. Then there’s health care and the cynical Republican House bill to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act. I would be more than happy to help but first we’d need to have a heart-to-heart about what it is they are truly trying to accomplish and they would have to agree to meet, in person, with a variety of Americans who would be affected by their decision-making. Basically, I see most of the problems in federal agencies stemming from a profound disconnect between ideology and “this should work” attitudes and the real lives of real people in a variety of circumstances and an unwillingness to hear from and truly consider the needs of the most vulnerable.

Although you aren’t likely to ask me to do these things, here’s a blessing in this same spirit:

May you be safe.
May you be happy.
May you be healthy.
May your life unfold and intersect in peace.

Sincerely,
Tracy Simpson

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