Dear Donald Trump
I didn't vote for you. I couldn't vote for you because of everything you seemed to represent during the election: racism, misogyny, and bigotry.
I want a country where everybody is treated equally under the law. I want a country where labels - Democrat, Republican, Christian, Atheist, Conservative, Liberal, Gay, Straight, etc. - do not define people. I want a country where none of the citizens are considered second class citizens based on their gender, the color of their skin, their sexual preference, their religion, their political affiliation, or anything.
My rights - the rights of every single citizen of this country - are just as important as yours. All the respect and consideration you expect people to give you is exactly what I expect and deserve, and what every citizen should expect and deserve . . . and recive.
In your speech yesterday, you called for the unification of our country and said the following . . .
What I want to know? What are you going to do to protect my equal rights under the laws of the country? How are you going to unite us if you plan - as you have stated - to roll back marriage equality? How are you a "president for all of Americans" if you sign the First Amendment Defense Act (which allows for open discrimination of members of the LGBT Community based on alleged religious freedoms - more on that later) into law? In both instances, your actions would not unify this country.
You also stated the following . . .
Nothing we want for our future is beyond our reach.
Actually, you're wrong about that if you do either of the things I mentioned above. Because if you do those things, the future of my marriage to my husband is quite possibly beyond my reach. The future marriages of same-sex couples across this great nation might be beyond their reach if you do either of the things I mentioned above.
We will seek common ground, not hostility; partnership, not conflict.
Again, to roll back marriage equality and to allow open discrimination of members of the LGBT Community does not seek "common ground" and it actually creates "hostility". "Partnership" cannot exist, and all that will leave is "conflict" if you strip away the right to marry granted to same-sex couples on that momentous day in 2015.
Then, there is the fact that your vice president is a known bigot and very anti-gay. He claims to be a Christian, but, sorry, not something he has ever evidenced with his behavior. He wants to strip away my right to equal protection under the law. He wants to deny my marriage to my husband.
I've been with Frank for 22 years. In 2014 we were legally married according to the laws of the State of Delaware. Unfortunately, Tennessee, where we live, didn't honor or recognize our marriage . . . until the Supreme Court ruling on June 26, 2015 which made them recognize our marriage.
To be honest - my relationship has lasted longer than any of your marriages. I'm not judging. If something is not working, and it can't be fixed, I believe people should move on. I do not believe people should stay in a marriage/relationship that is not working. Sometimes, the best thing people can do is walk away from a relationship.
I do not believe that people misinterpreting the bible to justify their discrimination towards others, and make them feel all warm and fuzzy about their bigotry, have the right to say Frank and I can't get married.
With all that said: how are you going to protect me, a United States citizen (whose family has been in this country since the mid-1600s) from the bigotry of others? Of the bigotry of your own chosen vice president? Are you going to strip away my equal rights and make me a second class citizen? Are you going to help promote discrimination based on personal beliefs hidden behind the phrase "religious freedoms"? Neither God nor Jesus ever said anything about homosexuality. Now, the followers of God and Jesus - humans, flawed individuals with personal biases, said an awfully lot about homosexuality . . . Well, we really don't know if they did, or if those parts were added to the Bible. You see, President-Elect Trump, nobody knows what was actually in the original documents because they haven't existed for centuries. All we have are copies of copies of copies, some so badly damaged that in the copying process the clerks/monks/whoever actually had to guess at words. Then, there was the fact that when translating the words, no known equal word existed, so the clerk/monk/whoever just put the word they thought it should mean in it's place.
So, as you can see, the Bible has been shaped by the personal biases of men who were not perfect in any way. Their word does not count above God or Jesus, no matter what the misguided faux-Christians would like the world to believe. God and Jesus did not speak out about homosexuality, so what gives men like your vice president Mike Pence the right to impose his will upon the people of our once great nation.
We have fallen far, President-Elect Trump, as you so clearly pointed out in your campaign. We will fall farther still if laws are passed that directly support discrimination toward law-abiding, tax-paying citizens of this country, many of whom have been in this country since not long after it's founding.
So, President-Elect Trump, as you plot the course of the next few years, please remember you represent not only the people that voted for you, but also for those that voted against you as well. Your job is not to govern only the Republicans or the alleged Conservatives, but all the people of the United States.
So, again, my simple question is: what are you going to do to protect the rights of the LGBT citizens of the United States? Will you allow your Vice President to attack us? Will you support his attacks on us? Will you allow open discrimination against us? How many more transgendered individuals have to die before someone acts? How many more LGBT teens have to be bullied into suicide before someone will act? How many deaths will you have on your hands if you allow the reign of terror against the LGBT community that has been ongoing for centuries?
When you were elected, and my friends were in despair, I told them this: we must hold onto hope, we must be the light in the darkness.
As much as I do not like what you seem to represent, I'm a fool who believes that there is good in all people. I could be delusional, for all I know, in thinking that there is good in you and that you won't strip away the equality the members of the LGBT community have fought for for centuries. Your choice of Mike Pence doesn't make me feel all warm and fuzzy, but . . . I still hope that you, as President of the United States, will respect every single citizen of this country, and will not go out of your way to openly harm them, or allow others in this country to openly harm or discriminate against them.
As hard as it is for me to say this, I wish you the best of luck as President of the United States. I hope you can unify our country; that Democrats and Republicans can actually work together, for the best interest of the country as a whole, instead of against each other; and that the hostility and conflict of the pre-election period are at an end.
And, if you really want help or guidance, if you really care about the millions upon millions of members of the LGBT Community . . . well, you now know how to contact me. I'd be glad to help.