If possums are sentient beings….

Dear President Trump,

Off and on all day I’ve been gingerly checking in with myself as to whether I am writing to you every day in good faith. I started out with the intention of sending you loving-kindness blessings so I could soften towards you and not become embittered and hateful. If I’m honest with myself, I have to admit I really haven’t softened toward you. At all. In fact, most days the motivation behind writing you is to have an outlet for my frustration over what you are doing to our country and the world. I’m usually pretty much on autopilot when I’m typing the LKM blessing to you. I’m going to try and be more present and attentive when I send you the blessing part as it really is important that I focus on our shared humanity and work to be compassionate toward you as a fellow sentient being. Ugh. I just cringed when I was typing that last phrase but really, if possums are sentient beings then you are one too. I realize this is unkind, but some days it seems you are not operating with a full deck and you really don’t know which end is up. I suppose that means I really should be even more compassionate toward you since you are likely suffering to some extent with being in over your head.

I have sometimes envied people who can blithely maintain they are able to “hate the sin and love the sinner” since it seems so neat and clean. They don’t have to get their hands dirty with hating anyone but they can still righteously bemoan the sinning. Even though I sometimes wish I could pull off that neat dualistic thinking/feeling, I also think most of the time people aren’t being honest when they claim this stance, especially since it’s most often invoked to pretend to be nicey-nice about LGBTQ people while making clear they believe we are sinners (and going to hell). When I hear that, I know to be on guard.

As I talk myself through this tangle, I’m seeing I just need to be honest with myself regarding how I feel about you and your actions. Basically, both you and your actions cause me deep distress and fear, but in my heart, I can’t bring myself to say I hate you. Strongly dislike feels ok, though. Loathe, maybe, too.

Because I do believe it will help me and because there is an outside chance it will help you (and thus everyone else), I will continue sending you LKM blessings.

May you be safe.
May you be happy and content.
May you be healthy and strong.
May your life unfold and intersect peacefully.

Sincerely,
Tracy Simpson

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