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My Thank You Note to President Trump

By Michael K Marsh on Wednesday February 1st, 2017

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How Trump Is Inspiring Me

A tumultuous first week of a Trump Presidency in America is inspiring people from all walks of life to express their feelings. Here, a Texan priest with the Episcopal Church offers his own powerful message, which originally appeared in his blog ‘Interrupting the Silence’. The following article is the personal opinion of Father Michael K Marsh.

– – – – –

Mr. President, I did not vote for you and I never thought I would be saying this, but I owe you a debt of gratitude. Less than a week into your presidency you have already done for me something I do not think Mrs. Clinton could have, or would have, done had she been elected president.

Your words and actions have inspired me. They have struck a chord deep within me. You have challenged me to be and do better. The violence in your words and actions have been a mirror before me. I do not like what I see. I do not want to be what I see. I may not have said or done many of the things that you have; however, that is not an excuse or justification for the violence that does inhabit some of my thoughts, words, and actions. In this regard, maybe we are not so different.

Trump can be a mirror for us allTrump can be a mirror for us all to take a closer look at our darker side.

Regardless of what may come of the rest of your presidency, I consider it a success, at least in terms of what you have done for me. You have awakened me to see more clearly the reality of violence and darkness that lives not only in America but in the human heart, my heart included. You have helped me see America’s addiction to, and romance with, violence – whether that violence is grounded in war, crime, poverty, economics, politics, language, discrimination, or entertainment.

You have shown me that far too often, violence is profitable and brings out the vote. You have reminded me that the way forward is nonviolence and nonviolent resistance. I already knew this but I now know it again, as if for the first time, and in a new way. I am grateful. Thank you.

Your presidency has led me to create my own cabinet of advisers, a cabinet of nonviolence. I have chosen Fr. John Dear, Fr. Thomas Merton, Dorothy Day, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, and Mahatma Gandhi to advise, teach, chastise, and disarm my heart. Needless to say, the Prince of Peace will head my cabinet. I am reading, listening, studying, and praying. I have chosen my way forward.

Dorothy Day, Gandhi, Martin Luther King JrWe must choose our own peace leaders, to inspire us on our journeys forward.

I will not do violence to you by my thoughts, words, or actions. I do not want to shame, humiliate, or harm you. I will pray for you, for America, and for myself.

I will not be passive. I will resist you with love and seek your good, not because I am especially fond of you but because I believe God loves you, just as God loves Muslims, immigrants and refugees, women, the disabled, and Mexicans.

I will not make my fight against you, other people, political parties, races, or religions. I will make my fight against injustice and the forces of darkness.


I will not adjust myself to your presidency or any presidency that promotes injustice, acts of violence, that speaks hatred, or denies the dignity of another human being. I will answer Dr. King’s call “to be maladjusted to such things” (A Testament of Hope, 14).

My work will not begin with the violence I see around me. Rather, it will begin with the violence I see within me.

I do not yet know exactly what all this means for me or where this might take me. I trust and believe, however, that in some way “the universe is on the side of justice” (A Testament of Hope, 14, 16), and to not protest violence, speak out for justice, and resist injustice is a “crime against God” and a “betrayal of the Christian ethic of love” (The Nonviolent Alternative, 129). I want to be neither a criminal nor a traitor. I do not want that for myself, you, or America.

Love resistance“I will resist you with love and seek your good.”

We are “at the crossroads” and must choose “between the law of the jungle and the law of humanity” (Gandhi on Non-Violence, 58). “Without the recognition of non-violence on a national scale there is no such thing as a constitutional or democratic government” (Gandhi on Non-Violence, 53).

I will work and pray for the Peace of Christ for all people, and for the grace and courage to refuse to say, “‘Peace, peace,’ when there is no peace” (Jeremiah 6:14; 8:11).

Thank you, Mr. President

How do you feel about this article? Join the conversation.

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Words By Michael K Marsh

Originally posted on Interrupting the Silence

 

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references

References

Thomas Merton, Gandhi on Non-Violence (New York: New Directions Publishing Corp, 1964).
Thomas Merton, The Nonviolent Alternative (New York: Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 1980).
James Melvin Washington, ed., A Testament of Hope – The Essential Writings of Martin Luther King, Jr (San Francisco: Harper & Row Publishers, 1986)

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40 Comments on "My Thank You Note to President Trump"

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Karen Taylor
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Karen Taylor

If only, if only. But does this course of action have results, or must we witness another 6 million people of a certain race/creed/religion go to their deaths before we act?

Gaynor O Brien
Guest
Gaynor O Brien

Did we not notice genocides SINCE the WWII holocaust? Werent we powerless to stop them? I know this. I ask myself am I the only one? If a world leader doeant rally to stop it it will go on.

Gaynor O Brien
Guest
Gaynor O Brien

Just as there was no stopping the forces of past atrocities,nor, as
we ve seen, this president’s rise to power so it may happen but I also see good people put down their non essentials and rise up to stop unacc3ptable forces.

Steph
Guest
Steph

Doesn’t mean that at all. History/American politics are repeating 1933 Germany, in a way, but the world is watching. This isn’t happening in a vacuum. We’ll throw out the bad people before they go too far and if we don’t; the world will. Pray/chant/hope for peace.

glideair
Guest
glideair

You cannot take the pickle out of the jar and return it to it’s original self.
I will die defending my right to life.
This admission is non-partisan and non-negotiable.

outer_rl
Guest
outer_rl

who do you think is trying to take that away from you, the left or the right?

glideair
Guest
glideair

The refreshed discipline of the U.S. Constitution and rule of law will prevail.

outer_rl
Guest
outer_rl

Will it prevail over a reckless and tyrannical populist president? Or over totalitarian social justice warriors determined to undermine the democratic will of the people who elected the president? Or both of the above?

Right
Guest
Right

A priest wrote this, yet he doesn’t acknowledge the support of pro-life that now exist in the White House? IMO he’s looking at the glass as half empty and being self righteous.

outer_rl
Guest
outer_rl

The priest’s seeing the world through nice/nasty prisms that obscure what’s really going on. There’s good within evil and evil within good. I don’t know how much effort Trump will put into being pro life. He never believed in it before he stood for office. I don’t know how much I believe in it myself. But I am interested in seeing how it all plays out.

outer_rl
Guest
outer_rl

I fundamentally agree with the sentiment of this article, the biggest benefit of a Trump presidency is how he is open about the selfishness and greed that Clinton, Bush and Obama shared, but kept under a cloak.

However, Trump isn’t the anti-Christ. He’s just another politician, and so I disagree with how this and other articles pretend otherwise. Yes, resist the bad things he does. But also recognise that the office of presidency has an important purpose, don’t deny the legitimacy of the holder of office, don’t undermine the proper functioning of constitutional government.

Miz Julia
Guest
Miz Julia

Trump is actually a unique threat. The only way to absolve yourself from the harm you helped unleash on your fellow human beings by voting for him is to acknowledge, on a fundamental level. the harm he’s already doing and will continue to do.

outer_rl
Guest
outer_rl

Of course, I acknowledge he’s doing a lot of harm. He’s terrible really. But I voted against Clinton because she wanted to start ww3 with Russia. So I still see Trump as the lesser evil.

Lyla McLean
Guest
Lyla McLean

The lasser of two evils is still evil.

outer_rl
Guest
outer_rl

Indeed. I wish Bernie had won.

Miz Julia
Guest
Miz Julia

::eye roll::

Nah, you voted for the vulgar buffoon predator because you liked that he weaponized racism, sexism, xenophobia and you apparently like being lied to. I wish I could say it nicer than that.

outer_rl
Guest
outer_rl
I don’t see him as any more racist than Clinton. Clinton attacked him for not being pro-Israel enough. That did not endear me to Her Majesty. Clinton’s anti Russian hostility is clear xenophobia. Yes, he’s a sex pest. But I don’t expect many people I know to actually be grabbed by his octopus hands. She actually wanted to bomb the Syrian government – it’s like she was both pro Israel and pro al Qaeda. I can’t tolerate that kind of stupidity in a leader. I was going to vote Jill Stein, but all the Clinton supporters said it would be… Read more »
Unity of Cookeville
Guest
Unity of Cookeville
As a minister trying to keep folks centered on love, peace, meditation and a conscious connection with the God of their understanding, I thought this article was very well written and I agree with the sentiments expressed. I also would like to thank President Trump for waking us all up. We will no longer be able to take our liberties and rights for granted. We will have to engage in a political system that seems to be in crisis. It will not correct itself, we have to exercise our freedom of speech and the power of our votes to redirect… Read more »
Miz Julia
Guest
Miz Julia
Why is it that we couldn’t be inspired instead by Hillary’s positive message? A LOT of harm will come to people before all of this inner work has gone on. I understand he’s trying to “uplift”, but I was already uplifted by choosing to engage consciously with the social and racial justice movements that were/are already alive and well in this country. Perhaps he’s younger than I am and needed this awakening to not take things for granted. I’m sorry that it’s taken the ascendancy of Trump, which will result in a roll back of a lot of hard work… Read more »
talon1812
Guest
talon1812
What exactly is Hillary’s positive message???? World War 3 with Russia that will result in the total destruction of the planet? Oh, maybe it’s her stealing billions of dollars of money that was funneled from Haitian flood and earthquake victims. Maybe it was the deliberate murder, then the subsequent stand-down of the murder of our American Ambassador in Benghazi, along with other American Citizens. Or maybe it’s the uplifting hope she perpetuates when she goes to her witch’s church meetings in California. Or maybe it’s the child sex slaves that she runs in her underage children’s sex pedophile rings. The… Read more »
Lyla McLean
Guest
Lyla McLean

Some peaple need a gentle touch to wake up, others need an explosion.

Kathy www.yinyangmother.com
Guest

I think this is well and honestly written. Perhaps this is the gift in the lesson of current poltiical times (and the Trump presidency is reflected in the UK’s Brexit and in politics where I am in Australia) – we must all do our own shadow work and we MUST all uplift.

Elizabeth-Ann Piche
Guest
Elizabeth-Ann Piche

I think his letter has inspired me yup yup

Sally Burrell
Guest
Sally Burrell
I feel similarly that we are face to face with a powerful opportunity to wake up and to grow our capacity for love and justice. I don’t tend to make important changes in my life with out a painful stimulus. I have been inspired by the recent horrors to show up, stand up and speak from my heart. Many are doing the same, peacefully and respectfully, knowing we are all One. It’s creating a feeling of rising love and cooperation. I am inspired and grateful for each moment that comes my way to respond positively to the darkness that lives… Read more »
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