Raving maniacs in plaid sundresses

Dear President Trump,

There are so many things going on. This morning it occurred to me that I could close my eyes and get Laura to open the WP and I could randomly point to something, anything and it would be a worthy letter-to-you topic. Then there are the things going on here with people I love including continued uncertainty about our brother-in-law’s cancer and my dear friend still being in labor after 33 hours. Plus, there are the hot temperatures that are mitigated by the smoke from massive wildfires to the North and to the South. And the rage, all the palpable rage that is erupting around and between us.

The last thing, the rage, is what I haven’t been able to shake so apparently it’s what I need to write to you about. Last night right before bedtime, I saw footage both of your performance at the Florida rally and of audience members hurling expletives and shooting fingers at the press corps covering the rally after you’d left the stage. Both were deeply disturbing. And they were of a piece. You animate them and they animate you. No wonder it took a long time to fall asleep.

The images from the tape were chilling. The camera slowly swept back and forth taking in the crowd of people yelling hateful taunts and jeers and making rude, obscene gestures. Nearly all the faces in the crowd were distorted by rage and what looked to me to be a derisive “we know best – you all really are enemies of the people and we hate you” sort of look. A handful of people looked stunned and overwhelmed. One woman especially caught my eye. She’s a white woman, probably in her mid 30’s. She has pretty, reddish brown hair and was wearing a cute plaid sundress that I could imagine enjoying wearing. It’s hard to tell, though, what she really looks like because she was yelling “F*** You!” over and over at the top of her lungs and flipping the journalists off with both hands. She looked like a raving maniac in her cute plaid sundress. She was a raving maniac in her cute plaid sundress. Ultimately she will need to take responsibility for her individual behavior, but I hope that someday, some how there will be a reckoning and you will have to own your part in having led your supporters to so thoroughly debase themselves.

May we be safe from one another.
May we be happy to disagree without needing to annihilate one another.
May we be strong enough to accept that there can be no real “win” in culture wars.
May we get ourselves together and make peace.

Tracy Simpson

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