Dear President Donald Trump,
Grace and Peace and Love be multiplied.
I wanted to offer my congratulations but our state of emergency precludes me from empty pleasantries. Further, you rode a wave of division, fear and hatred into your electoral college victory for the presidency of these "yet to be" United States. I must admit that you brilliantly united in unholy wedlock, manipulating the media with your cult of celebrity and the ugly unresolved issue of race and racism to give birth to your illegitimate victory. Your "reality show campaign" stirred up white rage and produced a "whitelash" to use the explosive expression and "Messy Truth" of Van Jones. You did and said anything to get elected by preying on ethnic, religious and racial hostilities in a nation that has never been truthful about the ugly undercurrent of white supremacy and heteropatriarchy. You've even placed a picture of Andrew Jackson, the genocidal, slave holding racist in the Oval Office because you see him as a model. You appointed a neo nazi, white supremacist as an influential and powerful leader on your staff. All of those are warning signs that portend your concept of making "America Great Again" has everything to do with making America hate, again. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr was right when he quoted James Baldwin and wondered if we had integrated into a burning house? Our house is on fire and you are throwing gasoline into the conflagration.
I hear from those who've met you in person that you are a nice man. If that is true then you must be bipolar because your policies and nominations are mean spirited and a reflection of white supremacy which, in case you don't know, has an expiration date on it. In love, I offer you some medication for your bipolarity.
Honestly, I am praying for you. I am praying that God would arrest you and cause you to experience a repentance that will lead to personal and national transformation. I write praying that you will rise to the dignity of the presidential office and be delivered from the petty politics of demonizing others.
Our nation is sick and you are feeding more toxins and poisons into the body politic.
I couldn't remain silent as you embrace Islamophobia and xenophobia while marching this nation towards an ugly fascism. You have ignored the pained protests of the indigenous Standing Rock Sioux and jeopardized the health of millions because of your determination to repeal Obamacare; because apparently you don't care. You have attacked the media that was complicit in your election because they didn't hold you accountable for your "alternative facts" and belief that if you say something that's not true, long enough and loud enough, it will become true. Now you have used religion as a weapon with the full support of your puppets in the pulpit.
In the Name of Jesus, stop it!
This nation, snatched violently from the natives, was built on the backs of stolen Africans and with the hands of immigrants. Now you've issued an executive order targeting those you have "othered" in the name of religion. In the Name of Jesus, I stand in solidarity with my Muslim sisters and brothers and oppose this bigoted ban. If you are so concerned about terrorism from religious extremists then ban the Ku Klux Klan. Don't forget that Timothy McVeigh was a Christian terrorist. Those clinic bombing pro life zealots kill people in the name of their god. Ban them! Native Americans were slaughtered by immigrant Christian terrorists.
You seem to relish photo ops with black people who have high profiles but limited public policy understanding. Worse, you have surrounded yourself with preachers who would rather be puppets than prophets. Even David needed a Nathan to keep him in check. I have some Nathan's I'd like to recommend. They stand in the prophetic tradition of Amos of Tekoa and Jesus of Nazareth, Martin King and Fannie Lou Hamer. Why don't you invite Minister Danielle Ayers, Dr. William Barber, Dr. Traci Blackmon, Dr. Amos Brown, Dr. Iva Carruthers, Dr. Keri Day, Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, Judge Reverend Wendell Griffin, Drs. Otis Moss, Sr and Jr., Dr. James Perkins, Father Michael Pfleger, Dr. W. Franklyn Richardson, Dr. Gina Stewart, and Dr. Raphael Warnock, to name a few. They would prophetically lift your presidency and policies from the dark place of hate to the sunlit spaces of justice and love that would move America to becoming a "more perfect union."
You need prophets like the above mentioned in order to insure that you don't go the way of another who was intoxicated by his self importance. Please, Mr. President, read Daniel chapter 5. Belshazzar had a party celebrating his greatness, that was crashed by a hand that wrote on the wall. The handwriting on the wall was interpreted by a foreigner with a different religion than Belshazzar. His name was Daniel. Daniel interpreted the handwriting on the wall "God has numbered your days with an expiration date. You've been weighed in the balances and found wanting. Your kingdom has been divided and given over..." in your case to Russia!
Mr. President, the handwriting is on the wall. "What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with your God." The handwriting is on the wall. "Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves,
for the rights of all who are destitute.
Speak up and judge fairly;
defend the rights of the poor and needy."
The handwriting is on the wall. You are obsessed that your presidency not be illegitimate because the Russians appointed you and you lost the popular vote even as your Republican Party suppressed the Black vote (That's what you should investigate. Voter fraud is fake news but voter suppression is real). Prophetic justice reminds you that you built your political platform questioning the legitimacy of the first Black president and now your presidency is illegitimate! "Be not deceived, God is not mocked whatever you sow you will reap!" The old saying goes "What goes around, comes around."
The handwriting is on the wall!
I write as an ally of what Angela Davis refers to as "an inclusive and intersectional feminism that calls upon all of us to join the resistance to racism, to Islamophobia, to anti-Semitism, to misogyny, to capitalist exploitation," and Palestinian apartheid.
The handwriting is on the wall.
Psalm 72 is instructive for leaders "he (or she) delivers the needy when they call, the poor and those who have no helper."
The handwriting is on the wall because Jesus warned that when He judges the nations He will separate the sheep from the goats. Will he say to you, Mr. President,
"I was hungry and your executive order made it more difficult for low and moderate income families to secure a home loan and you appointed a gifted surgeon, who needs to go some where and sit down, with no experience to give leadership to HUD.
I was thirsty and you issued an executive order to run roughshod over Native American, Standing Rock Sioux sacred grounds but Flint residents still don't have new pipes for fresh water from a fresh water source.
I was in prison because of the war on drugs which was really a war on black and poor people and because of stop and frisk; and you appointed Jefferson Beauregard Sessions as a racist fox to guard the henhouse of justice
I was a stranger and you built a wall and issued a ban on muslims." You will ask "Jesus when did this happen." He will say "Inasmuch as you did it to the least of these, you've done it to me."
Mr. President, the handwriting is on the wall.
I am praying for you and this sick nation to be healed.
Peace and Power,
Frederick Douglass Haynes, III
From the time I first met you, I admired you. I always enjoyed every movie you were in, watching you on Family Feud while away at college, looking up YouTube videos of you and all of that. You seemed so big in my eyes! It was so cool to know that my dad knew you and you knew my dad. Now, I am extremely disappointed in you and wondering what you're thinking. Was meeting with Trump a personal victory or were you really there fighting for our people? I can't help but to think you were there for the latter because there is no way you could walk away from that meeting and report back to us that you found him "congenial and sincere" and that you would "sit with him anytime." I don't understand. You would sit with a man who has spewed racist and hate filled language to everyone who is considered "different" or not white? You would sit with someone who has some of the most divisive an adversarial language in the 21st century? You would sit with a man who brags about grabbing women by their private parts? You have daughters and you have a wife, who just the other day posted Meryl Streep on her IG and remarked on how inspired she was by her speech at the Golden Globes (which had a lot to do with Trump). I am not mad that you met with the man. I am just mad that in your IG report back to us you stated "Trump wants to help with the situations in the inner cities so he immediately got Dr. Ben Carson." PAUSE. Trump picked a man whose only relation to the inner city is that he once lived there and like a lot of people in the inner city he is Black. He isn't qualified. If Trump were really concerned about the inner city he would've gotten someone who is capable and well versed in Urban Housing issues to really address and rectify the situation. Dr. Ben Carson has showed that he has no interest in really helping his people with the moves he has made and with every ignorant thing that comes out of his mouth. Come on Steve you fell for the okie doke? I thought you were better than that. Why not come out of that meeting and tell us you challenged him on his selection for Housing and Urban Development Director? Why not come out of that meeting telling us you challenged him about his reprehensible comments about women because you are a father, a husband and a man that has a fan base of millions of women? Why not come out of that meeting telling us you challenged him about his comments on Stop and Frisk? Why not come out of that meeting saying you challenged him on his pick for Attorney General? Why not come out of that meeting telling us you challenged him on saying Black people have nothing to lose? Why not come out of that meeting telling us all of that before you mention he is "congenial and sincere?" I am not falling for it Steve. And for the TRUMP TEAM who thinks that they can pick every Black Entertainer that we love so much to go meet with Trump and come back saying its okay, you're showing your "conservative racism." Black people aren't a monolith. We don't all believe the same things and even more so, we aren't STUPID. Just because we love their art doesn't always mean we will love their heart. Oh and Steve, I know this man isn't sincere. He just attacked one of our foremost leaders in the Civil Rights movement today. Also Steve, I have a strong feeling that you know you punked out because you turned off your IG comments under the post you made about Trump. I know you know that you disappointed your people and your fan base. So you can stop with the BS.
1/10/2017 39 Comments
January 11, 2017
This weekend our nation will pause to celebrate the phenomenal life and prophetic legacy of the drum major for justice, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who fought to make America "One nation...with liberty and justice for all." On that historic summer afternoon in the symbolic shadow of the Lincoln Memorial, the Rev. Dr. King was presented as "the moral leader of our nation" when he narrated the nightmare of oppression before defiantly declaring in the iconic speech, "I have a dream."
In the moral and prophetic tradition of Dr. King and so many others, from Fannie Lou Hamer to Barbara Jordan, who have been courageously eloquent and exemplary of the values of American citizenship challenging our nation to bridge the gap between principle and practice, I oppose the nomination of Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, III as the next Attorney General for the United States of America. Mr. Sessions is a throwback to the dark days when a former governor of the state of Alabama stood for racism and against justice as his "lips dripped with the words of interposition and nullification." Mr. Sessions has a terrible track record of standing on the wrong side of justice and embodying the principles of the "nightmare" Dr. King eloquently portrayed and lived and died opposing. The nomination of Mr. Sessions as our nation's "top cop" is a frightening proposition to communities of color who have been dehumanized by a policing system that declares Black lives don't matter, given his unapologetic and unfunny comments about the terrorist Ku Klux Klan and his fierce opposition to civil rights organizations, like the NAACP, that have stood for the best of American democracy. It is morally outrageous that Mr. Sessions, given his history of racial insensitivity would preside over a justice system that has often tilted the scales of justice to the disadvantage of the disadvantaged. Scriptures declare that we are to "speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy." Instead of defending the poor and needy, Mr. Sessions has used his positions of power to deride, attack, investigate and undermine the opportunities of democracy for communities of color and the historically underserved.
The powerful position of Attorney General of the United States of America is an entrustment to insure that systems and structures in this nation are fair and just for all Americans. Morally, power is used for the benefit of the powerless and vulnerable. The public service record of Mr. Sessions warns us that he is not fit to be a trustee of this pivotal position given his disposition toward the marginalized minorities and those who are outcast as "other."
Can Mr. Sessions be entrusted to protect voting rights, one of the supreme values of democracy? A background check that does not edit out facts reveals that Mr. Sessions led a targeted and invasive investigation of absentee voting ONLY in districts in Alabama where Black voter turnout had experienced an upsurge. No, he cannot be trusted to protect the precious franchise of voting. Mr. Sessions has opposed restoring the voting rights of felons who have paid for their crimes and served their time. Of course, ex-felon disenfranchisement disproportionately impacts African Americans. Mr. Sessions referred to the gutting of the Voting Rights Act in the Supreme Court's decision in Shelby County v. Holder as "good news...for the South." This statement was a wink and a nod to racists. He went on to call the Voting Rights Act of 1965 a "piece of intrusive legislation", arguing that Section 5 (a provision that concerns mostly southern states with long histories of voting rights abuses) should be struck down. In light of recent revelations that our election process is being targeted for foreign influence we must also stand against internal threats. The voter suppressive tactics of Mr. Sessions represents such an internal threat. Lady Justice must not be cloaked in the garb of racism and white supremacy.
Mr. Sessions has been one of the most anti-immigration senators currently serving. He has voted against almost every immigration reform bill introduced in the past twenty years. Jesus said that a nation would be judged based on how it treated strangers or foreigners. He also proposed in 2015 a mandatory minimum of 5 years in prison for illegal immigrants entering the country after being deported which could increase the federal prison population by as much as 30%. Mass incarceration, already a stain of injustice on the body politic of America, that has prompted a bipartisan call for prison reform, would be continued and expanded in a Sessions Justice Department. Morally, Mr. Sessions cannot be entrusted to preside over a just and fair immigration policy.
As a minister of the gospel, I recognize that people can change, however Mr. Sessions has done nothing in the 30 years since he was rejected for a federal judgeship in a bipartisan vote that reflects repentance and a change of heart. If he was deemed an inappropriate candidate for a federal judgeship he is even more unfit to serve as our nation's Chief Prosecutor. Before enjoying ceremonies and celebrations that commemorate the legacy of Dr. King as a Dreamer and the Drum Major for justice, I urge you to oppose his nightmare and reject the nomination of Jeff Sessions. The Justice Department must be presided over by one who heeds the words of the prophet Amos, who warned a nation to "Let justice roll down as waters and righteousness as an ever flowing stream." Jeff Sessions, through his policies and statements, has been a metaphorical dam, often blocking the waters of justice and must not be the Attorney General of the United States of America.