An Open Letter to Donald Trump Supporters

Dear Donald Trump Supporters,

In this letter, I will not call you a Nazi, racist, bigot, misogynist, fascist, xenophobe, or narcissist. I will not blindly ascribe a motive to your support of Donald Trump. I will not judge you or dismiss you as uneducated. I will simply make the case why I don’t believe you should vote for Donald Trump for President of the United States. If after reading my letter, you still decide to campaign and vote for him, I will respect your decision and constitutional right to free speech. I’m writing this letter because I care about our country, as I know you do, and I’m hopeful you may consider an alternate point of view.

Many people have underestimated and mischaracterized people who support Donald Trump. I get it. People are unemployed, loathe illegal immigration, fear terrorism, detest corrupt Washington politics, and despise the ratings-driven, lowbrow media. I understand. But, I don’t believe Donald Trump is the person who can solve these problems.

I recognize our choice is not between George Washington and Abraham Lincoln in this election. Our country deserves better leadership. I am not a fan of either leading candidate. It is a choice between the lesser of two flawed candidates. Our government might better represent its people if the halls of Congress were filled with elected carpenters, firefighters, coal miners, school teachers, auto mechanics, nurses, and single moms who better understand the problems Americans face and don’t go to Washington to get rich and famous and abuse their power to further their own self-interests. But Donald Trump has been no better than the Washington insiders he bemoans. A salient argument could be made that he is worse. This isn’t someone who has been volunteering for Doctors Without Borders.

I know Donald Trump may remind you of Ronald Reagan. He is an actor and looks presidential. He is tall, white, and American. He has a one syllable last name. But he is not Ronald Reagan. Reagan had knowledge of the issues and the process and worked in politics for 20 years before he served as a Governor for eight years. Reagan would disapprove of Trump’s divisive language and misconduct. I understand Republicans long for another Reagan. Trump is not Reagan.

Here are five reasons I believe you should reconsider your position.

1. Donald Trump sets a bad example for children.  Whether berating people who disagree with him, resorting to name-calling, defending the size of his genitals, incessantly boasting about his personal accomplishments as opposed to seriously addressing the diverse set of problems Americans face, his demeanor and values are no better than the politicians you abhor. Politifact, a non-profit, non-partisan organization that fact-checks politicians, has rated 77% of Donald Trump’s statements mostly false, false, or pants on fire false. The belief that he tells the truth isn’t supported by the facts. This is not somebody children can admire or emulate.

2. Donald Trump promotes stereotypes and discrimination. Placing entire groups of people into one category inflames tensions and hatred, demoralizes populations, and has the potential to exacerbate terrorism and domestic unrest. His conduct is irresponsible and harms our relationships at home and throughout the world. It’s too late to shake the Etch A Sketch.

3. Donald Trump’s temper puts our safety at risk. Trump suffers from a personality disorder known as narcissism. Hopefully even his most ardent supporters recognize it. As a result, he takes everything personally and goes to great lengths to defend his ego. His medical condition makes him unfit to be responsible for the well-being of 320 million people. Foreign dictators and terrorists will not take his illness into consideration when they strike. We also can’t trust his ability to restrain himself given his penchant for flying off the handle over trivial issues such as the size of his hands.

4. Donald Trump’s environmental policy threatens the planet. When asked about the environment, Trump stated “we can leave a little bit.” It is a shocking admission with the potential for devastating and irreversible consequences to the planet. His call to deregulate billion dollar corporations that will wreak havoc on our oceans, lakes, air, and water supply in addition to our precious wildlife and marine life should alarm every American citizen.

5. Donald Trump lacks basic knowledge of the issues. A president must be capable of doing more than choosing good people to do his job. If that’s his plan, what purpose will he serve? Why don’t we simply elect Carl Icahn instead? Will his ego really allow others to make decisions? Trump has no policy track record. He has made many of the same underhanded decisions as Washington politicians — admitting to donating money to curry favor, putting his name on buildings he doesn’t own to profit, and taking shortcuts with the tax and bankruptcy laws to benefit himself and cheat the American taxpayer. Did he buck trends and decide to make his products in the U.S. and employ Americans? No. He followed the companies he criticizes and shipped jobs overseas. What is he most known for the past few years? Asking for President Obama’s birth certificate years after the Republican party gave up on the issue. Does that seem like a leader focused on what matters most to you? Or someone who is unbalanced and obsessed with petty politics?

For these reasons and many more, I submit that Donald Trump is unfit to be President of the United States and would be a disaster for our country. I encourage you to think critically about your vote. He must be stopped or the results could be catastrophic. This is not a mistake our country can afford to make.

Regardless of your decision and even though we may have political differences, we’re fellow Americans. I hope we can elevate the discourse, stay focused on discussing the issues, and not resort to personal attacks or violence that devalue our democracy. In an age where apathy reigns, I applaud you for participating in the process. I hope my letter resonates with you and causes you to rethink your position.

Respectfully,

Andrew Kirschner

47 thoughts on “An Open Letter to Donald Trump Supporters

      1. Hi Boon,

        Hitler was not a vegetarian. That’s a myth.
        http://www.naturalnews.com/025163_Hitler_vegetarian_vegetarianism.html

        Even if he was, it wouldn’t matter. It would be like me naming the millions of people who ate meat and killed people and suggesting that somehow you are like them because you also eat meat. To be taken seriously, you should consider another approach.

        You do not represent yourself or your candidate well. I provide links to facts. Facts are not lies. Lies are lies. It’s always interesting to me that when people quote Donald Trump directly whether it’s about torturing people, killing innocent families, only leaving a little bit of the environment, or accusing immigrants of being rapists, his supporters can’t defend him so they simply dismiss people quoting him as liars. It’s politics at its worst.

  1. This is an incredible piece of work, Andrew. Not only are you an exceptional writer, but you have a kind heart and know what it takes to unite people by finding common ground, even it’s just for a chance to share such an important message. Can we throw YOUR hat in the ring for President?? 🙂

    1. Thank you Paris. I believe we can do much better as a people. We should focus more on our common interests and seek compromise or simply to disagree when necessary. For a country that calls itself the “United” States of America, we certainly don’t seem very united. It is possible to disagree and still feel united. That’s missing from our political process, largely a failure of the people we have elected to lead by example.

    1. Hi DV,

      I’m sorry to disappoint you. The purpose of my blog is to help make the world a more humane place. While I usually focus on animal rights, I occasionally share political opinions.

      If you would like to stop receiving my articles via email, you can click the unsubscribe option at the bottom of the email. I’m unable to unsubscribe people.

      I hope you will consider remaining a subscriber. More importantly, I invite you to share the reasons why you’re supporting Donald Trump. I’m sure many people would find your perspective informative. It actually saddens me that we can’t even discuss our differences in a respectful and safe forum. It’s such a valuable opportunity to learn from each other.

      As for making up our own minds, I’m always open to others’ points of view, even if they challenge every assumption I’ve made. That’s how I stopped eating animals.

      Thank you for everything you do to make the world a better place.

      Your friend,

      Andrew

    2. Yes, you have the right to make up your own mind, but do not call yourself “educated” if you favor an individual who is not competent to be president, who knows zero of international diplomacy, who is a loose canon w the capability w a “finger on the button”, who has a documented history as xenophobe, racist, hater, liar, enemy maker, hateful discriminator, con artist and made his wealth through hurting American workers, has kicked out veterans, is profanity laced w the explosive temperament attacking every single person who disagrees, animal abuser, wife cheater, climate change deniar, ally alienate, enemy accumulator, and the worst danger to America than ISIS. If you are so educated, it’s time you started to fact check rather than find a reason to favor someone who can only hurt America because of your own personal hateful and uninformed/misinformed agenda. We only ask that you fact check this time bomb!

      1. Louise, my hope is that you can follow the example of the author and not include name calling and categorization of the person being discussed here or any other person that comments. Andrew has done a great job of illustrating compassionate communication and I think we/you should respect that in your comments.

      2. Hey I read your post. I’m not educated on politics really but what do we do to stop terrorism? We need someone with guts! I’m not sure who would be the right person but I do know I feel scared for my children seeing this freak show go on. I feel we are in a lot of danger and our country is weak right now. What is the answer then? Who is the right person to protect us, to stand up and fight this terrorism and not just sugarcoat it. People have been taking advantage of us for sometime now what is the answer? Please reply and educate me a bit.

        1. Hi Edward,

          Thank you for your thoughtful note. We would probably be more united as a country if more people approached issues the way you have here. We share in common a desire to make sure we’re all safe.

          I think it’s hard to say which candidate would better handle terrorism. A more heavy handed approach could either resolve the issue or exacerbate it. Many experts argue ISIS formed as a result of the misguided Iraq War. ISIS is not a government and they don’t wear uniforms so defeating them requires a complex set of strategies. Kill 100 and 200 more can join their cause and become more motivated to kill us than the previous 100. Defeating ISIS has been compared to a game of whack-a-mole. Military advisers would be better able to answer your question although many of them disagree on the best approach.

          Is terrorism the biggest threat we face? What if it is climate change as many scientists argue? Would electing someone who says he will “leave a little bit” of the environment keep us safe?

          These statistics may also provide perspective:
          # of Americans killed in past 10 years by
          terrorism: 24
          domestic gun deaths: 280,024
          car accidents: 330,239

          That’s not to say deaths from terrorism can’t increase significantly if either left unchecked, contained, or pursued aggressively but if we look at allocation of government resources and our concern, we may ask ourselves if our response is proportional to the risk. More than 500,000 people die from cancer every year. The war on diseases such as cancer starts with a shift towards plant-based food and cleaner water and air. I would like to see a greater sense of urgency and passion from our federal government and citizenry spent on this issue.

          Thank you again for sharing your concerns. What do you think?

  2. Andrew, thank you for this post! I couldn’t have said this better myself. You gave a valid argument without resorting to name-calling and insults, which is how a political stance should be presented. In light of that, I would also be interested to hear why dv20again is supporting Trump.

  3. I’m undecided. I don’t mind at all what you write about…..if it’s something I don’t like, I simply don’t read very far. I’ve never liked Trump, and then he started appealing to me as the new president because he seamed like he could be strong and get rid of ISIS and keep our jobs from leaving the country, etc. etc. Then I see that his sons go to Africa and kill animals. I could just see how we would not be able to count on Trump with animal issues. Is this why you don’t like Trump Andrew????? Anyway, but WHO else is there to vote for??? I think the election should be called off until we get some decent candidates!!

    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts Donna. Well said. I read articles with opposing points of view often to understand how others think. I never take them personally. I even read animal agriculture magazines. When someone is comfortable with their positions, they should not fear hearing the other side. It’s not as if someone can force someone else to hold their position.

      Regarding Trump, telling Apple that they have to keep their jobs here, for example, isn’t feasible. His policies are short on substance and his threats to tax imports will be passed on to the consumer. He doesn’t have a viable plan to keep jobs from going overseas. Neither does the Democrat party. Even with tax incentives, it is much cheaper to pay someone .45 cents per hour in Vietnam than $8.00 per hour in Texas. There is no easy solution to this issue.

      Regarding ISIS, we will never get rid of ISIS. ISIS is not a government and they are not an army. They are all over the world and we don’t know the location of many of them. The best we can do is contain them. Trump has no foreign policy experience and no sense of world affairs. I would not put him in charge of handling ISIS. His rhetoric and hatred towards them only fuels their desire to kill more people. Simply saying “we’re going to take them out” isn’t a strategy. It’s recipe for another endless and winless war in the Middle East. Hopefully the Iraq War taught our country a lesson about wars in the Middle East.

      You should watch the interview with Trump where he has magazines spread out on his desk with his photo on the cover of all of them. He proceeds to talk about each cover and why it’s so terrific. Only a clinical narcissist would engage in such behavior. There is no humility. This is about him. He is feeding his ego and enjoying every minute. He is powered by attention.

      I hope you find this feedback helpful. Please feel free to share your thoughts.

      1. Yes, very helpful. I think my mind is made up now. No Trump voting for me. I’m beginning to think he’s an idiot. And I also think he’s on an ego trip. I think this is one of the items on his bucket list before he leaves this world. He said something on the news today about not listening to anybody but his brain talk. It’s getting scary!

      2. “Only a clinical narcissist would engage in such behavior. There is no humility. This is about him. He is feeding his ego and enjoying every minute. He is powered by attention.”
        .
        Same as he’s always been. In the past, he brought himself to bankruptcy. This time, his narcissistic behavior endangers all of us if he’s elected. I believe we’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg in terms of how much of a mockery he could make of the presidency. And I was not at all surprised about that 77% falsity rating. I’ve gotten the impression that there are times that he simply makes things up as he’s going along.

    1. Thank you. Republican David Brooks makes a compelling case.

      “Donald Trump is epically unprepared to be president. He has no realistic policies, no advisers, no capacity to learn. His vast narcissism makes him a closed fortress. He doesn’t know what he doesn’t know and he’s uninterested in finding out. He insults the office Abraham Lincoln once occupied by running for it with less preparation than most of us would undertake to buy a sofa.

      Trump is perhaps the most dishonest person to run for high office in our lifetimes. All politicians stretch the truth, but Trump has a steady obliviousness to accuracy.

      This week, the Politico reporters Daniel Lippman, Darren Samuelsohn and Isaac Arnsdorf fact-checked 4.6 hours of Trump speeches and press conferences. They found more than five dozen untrue statements, or one every five minutes.”

      Full article: http://nyti.ms/1XzyN39

      1. How did Trump respond to David Brooks? Did he address his concerns? No, he called him “dumb” and a “clown.” This is how a five-year-old child would respond. It’s unfortunate that the American people find this conduct acceptable in a presidential candidate. The ripple effect, especially on children who see people embrace this type of behavior, will be long lasting and detrimental to the fabric of our society.

        http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/273639-trump-david-brooks-one-of-the-dumbest-pundits

  4. I haven’t been watching this election too closely. I don’t need to to see him for what he is. All the points you make -I concur -wholly.
    One point your reference to is his mental health condition.
    This is a huge reason that I loathe the man’s views 100% – he gives people with mental health conditions a bad name.
    Totally reblogged this for Mental health politics 🙂 great post.

  5. Reblogged this on Daisy in the Willows and commented:
    *REBLOG*

    Why have I reblogged this post?
    Totally reblogged this for Mental health politics 🙂 great post.
    I haven’t been watching this election too closely. I don’t need to to see him for what he is. All the points you make -I concur -wholly.
    One point your reference to is his mental health condition.
    This is a huge reason that I loathe the man’s views 100% – he gives people with mental health conditions a bad name.

  6. I enjoyed reading this letter as I usually enjoy reading everything you write my friend. After assigning my students a research and a slide presentation on each of the candidates to have a better understanding of them and being able to male informed decisions, I feel tempted to use your letter today in class for further considertaion. Thank you for such a deep insight as usual. Thanks for what you do.

  7. In defining narcissim, this is clearly the pot calling the kettle black. Im my 54 years of life, I have not quite met anyone as narcissistic as you. When you don’t have the spotlight, you will condemn the others who may be.

    You are a leftist liberal, why would you write anything differently than what you have written here.

    “Here are the reasons why I don’t think you should vote for Donald Trump.” Who exactly are you to tell anyone why they “should” do anything? And why would anyone care what you think of them or judge them on the basis of who they choose to vote for. Who do you really think you are?

    This is typical liberal bullying at it’s finest. Instead of spreading your own message of your sugar coated, well written hate for Trump, maybe you could write about the person you choose, their positive attributes and why. You are manipulating your “blind followers”.

    You’re exactly the reason people are swinging to Trump.

    If it wasn’t your intention to call him those names such as xenophobic, racist, etc., you wouldn’t have even referenced it in this dialogue.

    Stick to animal activism. Stop using your influence to brainwash and Trumpwash your sheeple.

    1. Hi Bruno Barlotta,

      Fascinating response. I’ve read many articles in opposition to people I’ve supported through the years. Rather than get defensive, become unglued, and blindly identify someone else’s political affiliation, I read them with great interest. In fact, many times they’ve helped me to evolve on issues. I’m not married to every position or any political candidates. My mind is always open to the possibility of compromise, new ideas, and perspectives.

      It’s unfortunate that my opinion and free speech causes you so much anger. I’m a “bully” and “narcissist” for sharing my observations on a blog that aims to make the world a more humane place? By stating in the letter that I respect Trump supporters’ right to disagree with me and campaign and vote as they choose, you believe it makes me a bad person? I think reasonable people will find your statements misguided at best.

      I’m sorry you don’t care what anybody else thinks. I do. I actually care what everyone thinks, including you. If that makes me a “narcissistic, liberal bully,” I’ll gladly wear the label. Thank you!

      You wrote: “Who exactly are you to tell anyone why they “should” do anything? And why would anyone care what you think of them or judge them on the basis of who they choose to vote for. Who do you really think you are?” In addition to being inaccurate, that is such a bizarre statement. This is what millions of people do every day in a democracy — make a case for what they believe in. You seem interested in suppressing free speech which explains your support of Trump. You act as if I’m telling people what to do so they no longer have a choice. It’s as if you’ve just arrived from North Korea and have no concept of free speech. Unlike you, I encourage people to share their views, even if I disagree with them.

      Do you think that by telling me to “stick to animal activism” and not exercise my constitutionally protected free speech, you are actually being the bully? Would it be all right if I told you to stick to cutting hair?

      Read my letter and your response. Ask yourself which one of us is open to ideas, encouraging respectful debate, “telling” someone what to do, and avoiding name-calling.

      In “No, Not Trump, Not Ever,” Republican David Brooks makes a similar case, outlining why people should not vote for Donald Trump except his language is much stronger than mine. Is he a “leftist, liberal bully” too? Is he allowed to share his opinion or should he stick to something else too?

      http://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/18/opinion/no-not-trump-not-ever.html?_r=0

  8. Obviously the last few administrations have left people behind. The innihilation of Christians in the Middle East and we have done nothing as a nation. Our roads are crumbling, our students are in debt with huge student loans, the jobs are leaving America, there is currency manipulation, and our education system is ranked at the bottom in this world. Our police are not respected because our President does not support them. There is the black population that under President Obama hoped that he would help them with better education and jobs but that never happened. There are gangs because often the mothers are raising kid and working and these kids who have hard working and overwhelmed mothers want to belong to gangs to fill the void. I know because of a jury experience where a gang member killed someone and I saw what their life looked like.
    I can go on….the very fragile kids at Emory who are afraid because Vote Trump on the sidewalk was written in chalk. We would not be a country if they were around during WWII. The drug problem is everywhere with kids on heroin. I respect your request with your comments but why don’t you figure out how to change the problem which is the establishment that is ruining this country. This country is running out of time and all the other candidates will go on doing the same old thing. You want us to decide whether we vote for a very likeable socialist, a criminal politician or establishment candidates. Not sure if it was Newt Gingrich who compared Trump to Andrew Jackson in personality and political style..looked him up as he was ranked around sixth best president. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expects to get different results.

    1. Hi Joan,

      Thank you for sharing your views.

      We agree on the following issues:

      1) We need to invest in infrastructure.

      2) Students are buried in debt. I support reducing rates.

      3) Many companies are outsourcing their jobs. There is no easy solution to this problem given that they answer to shareholders, not the American workers.

      4) We need to continue to work on improving our education system.

      5) Students should be free to support any candidate on college campuses.

      Where we disagree is that someone with no political experience, so little knowledge of the most elementary issues, and an incorrigible demeanor can fix these problems. While I agree that career politicians, including Congress, often fail us, it can get even worse. I believe Trump would be even worse.

      This is not a choice between Lincoln and FDR.

      1. So you think Obama had lots of experience? A good leader in any field needs to surround themselves with good people and I believe Trump will do that. Trump said he would brings both sides to the White House to try to find common grounding on regular basis. Agree he is a narcissist but do you think that Obama is not? Trump has amazing kids that have had privilege but work hard and love and respect each other and their father..rare qualities among the super rich. My husband worked in NYC and had a view of the Wollman skating rink..city could not finish and Trump stepped and finished ahead of projected time and under budget. I am not going to change you opinion and you are not going to change mine.

  9. Andrew,
    I did no mean to be abrasive in my answer. Donald Trump made me understand why nothing gets done in Washington. As long as our representatives answer to the lobbyist things will never change. I am not saying there are not many in Congress that are working to make things better but it seems that there are also many who change once they arrive in D.C. Sad but we have some really lousy choices with a very nice Socialist, a woman who lies and when people are asked to name her accomplishment they are at a loss to answer. Ted Cruz not liked by anyone in Congress so guess that might not go well on many issues before Congress. Hope whoever wins they can bring this country together.

    1. Hi Joan,

      Thank you for your reply.

      No, I don’t believe in someone who is so grossly inexperienced and uninformed that he states he is going to wipe out what will be a $24 trillion national debt with interest in eight years. It’s preposterous. He can’t file the U.S. for bankruptcy. He stands alone on Politifact as the politician who tells the most lies. He is a pathological liar and truly a deplorable person who incites violence, promotes violence, and preys on uniformed people’s fears.

      Google the facts about immigrants and crime. It’s a farce. Immigrants commit far less crime than legal citizens. Trump uses the issue to divide, breed hatred, and discriminate. I realize many Americans, sadly, enjoy that kind of politics. I care about all people and do not.

      His sons kill exotic animals for fun and pose for photos holding their defenseless, dead bodies. Simply because he says they are good people doesn’t make them good people. His children are irrelevant to his candidacy.

      President Obama did not have no experience. This is just a Republican talking point. He served for 15 years as an Illinois Senator and U.S. Senator and taught constitutional law at a top university in the country. That is all related experience. He was also very informed on global and domestic issues which Trump is not. Trump is simply an opportunist. His lack of knowledge on the most elementary issues is breathtaking.

    1. Hi Joan,

      Absolutely not. I have major issues with all of the candidates in both political parties.

      While I believe Sanders cares deeply about people and does not have ulterior motives (unlike many politicians who care deeply about corporations and fattening their own bank accounts), he would have a difficult time getting his proposals through the U.S. Congress (no chance if both houses remain Republican). Thus, his bills would be watered down at best. And he has been abysmal on animal agriculture as have they all.

      If given a choice, I believe he is the least worst of the pack.

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