Unforgivable

Dear President Trump,

I hesitate to tell you about what’s been happening for my little family today because even in the medium scheme of things, it’s not really a big deal; certainly not life and death like things are for so many other families. I’m still in San Diego attending my annual work conference. Our daughter is getting ready to leave on a three-week trip out of the country with her athletic team tomorrow. We knew it would be challenging for Laura and our daughter to get everything together with me not there, but we thought it would be ok and up until about 3:30 today it basically was. What we didn’t factor in was the possibility of something unrelated going wrong. On top of the pre-trip strains, one of our dogs has gotten acutely ill. With me over a thousand miles away I’m not able to be help much at all. I’ve tried to troubleshoot with from afar and provide support, but it feels awful to not be there.

I’m confident everything is going to end up being ok for us. Our daughter will get on the airplane tomorrow and will go have her adventure. The dog will get through this bout of illness like he has a dozen times before. Laura will be wrung out from it all, but will be ok soon. I will reset once I know the airplane has been boarded and the dog is keeping his food down. First world stuff. Stressful and hard, but manageable. I am aware that we are really very, very fortunate.

As stressful as having me gone for a few days at an inopportune time has been for our family, I can only imagine how frightening and overwhelming it is for families living under the threat of a parent being deported or enduring forced separations, detentions, and desperate uncertainty at the border after trekking hundreds of miles to escape life-threatening violence at home. It’s a miracle that any of the people in these families is standing upright at all. One of the symposia I went to today was focused on the bad, bad long-term effects of social isolation coupled with unpredictable stressful exposures. I know I gave you a lecture about this yesterday, but you need to keep hearing that there are terrible long-term consequences to the actions your administration is perpetrating against immigrants and asylum-seekers and what you are doing to them is unforgivable.

May your actions be safe.
May your actions shift to support everyone’s pursuit of happiness.
May your actions support all children’s health.
May your actions be about real peace.

Sincerely,
Tracy Simpson

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