Part of why kindness is so important

Dear President Trump,

Here’s the letter I had about 65% written yesterday when I pivoted to comparing niceness and kindness instead. You’ll probably be able to tell when I segue to new material to finish it out, but it doesn’t really matter – everything is connected and all of a piece.


Does it add a level of shivery mystery and intrigue to your relationship with Bill Barr to be in cahoots about keeping Congress and the American people confused when it comes to political manipulations of the judicial system for your friends and allies? Will the chorus of right wing sycophants sing their parts loudly and dramatically enough to keep the GOP and Your Base in line? Or will you or Barr (most likely you) slip up and give some sort of tell that your all’s performance was choreographed ahead of time to give the illusion that the DOJ is independent of you?

I guess we’ll see.

Or we won’t. You all are mostly doing a fantastic job of keeping the news cycle churning at lightening speed so it’ll be interesting to see how long this story stays above the proverbial fold. I’m afraid that pretty soon here, it too will be relegated to the huge pile of democracy-shredding stories that are forming an invisible, but increasingly impenetrable barrier around you and your presidency. You are all about walls, after all, aren’t you?

I know I’ve issued this next type of lament before (and no doubt, will again), but while you and Barr do your coded thing, the Antarctic is heating up, landmasses in the North Atlantic are enduring a massive bomb cyclone, Australians are trying to figure out their new all-charred-everywhere landscape, and Americans are variously dealing with record rainfall, snowfall, drought, and tornadoes.

Part of what got me going (again) on this jag about your constant manipulations was seeing some disturbing art on the side of a Backwoods Brewing Company van the other morning. The forested mountains behind the logo look just like the still-forested mountains of Washington and Oregon, but in the lower left corner of the image is a huge log truck. I’m bringing it up because I think it sucks that a company called Backwoods Brewing is using the image of a log truck hauling what look like very large, likely old growth, former trees. I’m bringing it up because I think they shouldn’t get to have it both ways – ostensibly celebrating old growth, backwoods forests with their name and using macho clear cutting imagery to sell their product. I’m bringing it up because the planet is inexorably heating up while we waste our precious time sorting through the daily onslaught of manipulative crap from you and your administration.

I read a WP article this morning by Caitlin Gibson about climate scientists with young children. There’s a lot there to unpack, but the part I want to highlight is about how one of the scientists, Sarah Myhre, is focused on helping her 6-year old son “become the strongest, kindest person he can be.” She goes on to say:

“I believe that the through line for us, as communities, as individuals, is the humanity that we bring to solving problems. Our ethic of care, our empathy, our stewardship of one another.”

What she’s talking about ties in with yesterday’s letter beautifully – 1) she believes her son can become kind, that it’s a malleable quality that can be developed, and 2) she believes we need kind, empathetic, strong people if we are to address climate change with integrity and creativity, which we obviously need to do. This is why kindness is so important, this and 8 billion trillion other reasons.

May we be safe from ourselves.
May we be happy to be kind and altruistic.
May we all grow up to be healthy, strong, and kind.
May we make peace with change and meet it with integrity and resolve.

Tracy Simpson

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