Dear President Trump,

It sure doesn’t feel like there’s much about the USA to celebrate on our collective birthday today, at least nothing having to do with the Executive Branch. That this is our Independence Day anniversary is especially galling and ironic following the release yesterday of the bipartisan Senate report (nice timing, eh?) concluding that our intelligence agencies got it right, that Russia did interfere in the 2016 election to help you win. The findings are no surprise to most of us, but frankly I wouldn’t have bet any money that the GOP-controlled Senate would actually issue such a report (the Intelligence Committee must have slipped it out to the press while McConnell was taking a bathroom break). I bet the report has put a bit of a damper on your mood today. At least I hope it has.

One can never really tell with you, though, can one? At this juncture in the crazy, terrifying Russia-America saga (sickeningly aka the Vlad-Don bromance) I think it’s reasonable to pause and consider your intention to meet with Vladimir alone at the Helsinki summit, no interpreter, no note taker, no aids, no one but the two of you. Alone. Able to talk freely. If the meeting ends up taking place lots of shitty things could happen, including but not limited to, you 1) giving up national secrets; 2) arranging to have adversaries “disappeared” or brutally murdered, and 3) asking for asylum for yourself and your family. However, what I think is even more shitty and should be scaring the crap out of all of us is that you are broadcasting the intention and clearly think you can get away with doing it. Your base may take this to mean you have nothing to hide because if you did, surely you wouldn’t be so bold as to plan a solo meeting with him, but I think the larger meaning is that you are now brazen enough to tell us all to our faces that you are a traitor and you are conveying loudly and clearly that we can’t do a damn thing about it.

We have now officially moved into a new, more disturbing chapter of this tragedy, but rest assured, it is not the final chapter and you and yours will not prevail in the end. In the meantime, though, because I’m holding hot coals that I’d dearly love to fling at you, here’s a prayer just for you:

May you be safe and wake up before you become expendable to your boss.
May you be happy to renounce your traitorous ways.
May you grow a healthy moral backbone this Independence Day.
May you stop trying to incite a civil war.

Tracy Simpson

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