Wednesday, March 2, 2016

I Will Say No

Beloved Friends,

As elections approach a new and horrifying reality is emerging. Donald Trump could become our next president.

The GOP is in turmoil as they struggle to find an alternative for their own candidate.

The Democrats worry that low voter turnout and political maneuvering will allow a nightmare to be created.

Some people have simply said they plan to run away- to find new homes in other countries.

Some of them are serious.

But I'm asking you to do something different. I'm asking you not to use your privilege to escape.

I'm asking you to vote. Personally, to paraphrase  Steven Van Zandt, I ain't no Democrat, and I ain't no Republican, but I am a patriot, and I love my country. Vote for anyone you want, but not for Donald Trump.
But if he wins, I'm asking you to do more.

The following is an open letter to Donald Trump. It says it the best way I know how. Will you add your voice to mine?

Will you say no?

An Open Letter to Donald Trump

Dear Mr. Trump,
I am a minister, not a politician. I do not have the funds to buy countries, or the corporate power to destroy empires.

But I have a voice.

It is a small voice, perhaps, but it will not be silenced.

And amid the roar of your blustering, I will say “no.”

When you call for black people to be beaten, and excluded, and even removed- I will say no.

When you attempt to silence Latinx voices- I will say no.

When you mock the disabled and threaten the oppressed- I will say no.

When you shout your plans for exclusion and division and terror over and over again I will say no, and no, and no.

If you build a wall, I will stand in the way of your builders. If they knock me to the ground, I will lay in their path.

If you come for my Muslim siblings I will force you to take me first, and I will not go quietly. I will say no.

If you ask that they register I will be Muslim, or Jewish, or black, or Baha’i.
And I will be at the head of the line, over and over, with each thing that you do.

Saying no.

We have seen what happens when people live in fear of jackboots in the night. We have seen registries which lead to cattle cars and crematoriums. We have seen the suppression of free speech and the free press, and violence against the most powerless. We have seen what happens when people rise up against their neighbors in the name of nationalism, and look the other way in the name of religion.

I will say no.
Never again.

And I am not alone in seeing what you are. A fascist. A thug. An over-grown bully with a broken moral compass.

But even if I were the only one, you would still hear my voice, ringing in the stillness.
Saying no.

Rev. Amy Shaw
Lake Country Unitarian Universalist Church
Hartland, Wisconsin


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