I Still Pray

Dear President Trump,

While I know you’ll never read this, I felt compelled to write it just the same.

When you became president, I scratched my head, and said, “Huh?” You’d never held a political office and seemed, to me, unqualified and unprepared for the enormous job at hand. On top of that, your words stirred hate and anger in your campaign speeches, and your comments about women left me gagging. But, I was trained by my Irish Catholic father, the son of immigrant parents, to honor the system and the man at the helm, even if we didn’t agree with the politics. My father believed in the democratic process and that the American people would always rise to the occasion for the common good, so, I’ve tried – really hard.



When you won, I wanted to understand how. Your nomination blindsided so many of us, so I did research on your constituents: where they lived and what their lives were like. I reside in the Silicon Valley of California where all races, sexual preferences, and religious beliefs are tolerated. Of course, I’m not naïve enough to think everyone here approves or even agrees with the various lifestyles, but I’ve never heard hateful remarks publicly spewed on our streets under the guise of free speech as recently demonstrated in Charlottesville.

Sadly, that day, and your comments afterward made me realize our country is in deep need of healing and love.

I get that I live in a bubble in this part of the country. Of course, we have poverty here too as many struggle to pay rent or mortgages, but there is also tremendous wealth. As a Realtor, I deal with buyers paying disgusting amounts of money for a new home; money that could feed an entire village in an impoverished country for years. But, I see now that in other parts of the United States businesses and housing have yet to recover from the Great Recession, and people are suffering.



When you were elected, I thought, “Maybe I’m all wrong. Perhaps he’s what our country needs: a businessman and not a politician. Let’s get rid of the swamp that’s been hampering the political process and focus on the middle class and poor. God knows the wealthy don’t need anything.”

So, I sat back waiting to be impressed. Unfortunately, I’m still waiting.

It’s been nine months now, and every day I pray for good news; that you’ve accomplished wonderful things, like lowering taxes on goods and services and the capital gains on homes. We all work hard, often spending long hours at jobs we hate just to keep the roof over our family’s heads and food on the table, but when the paychecks arrive, we’re underwhelmed by what’s left over.

While I’m sure there have to be somethings you’ve accomplished that are good, I’ll let the history books take care of stating them when all is said and done. The real reason for this letter is to let you know I’m honoring a lesson my dad taught me when dealing with challenging people.

I once asked how he could love individuals that were ugly in spirit. God knows we had a few in our own family. Looking at his only daughter with his crystal blue eyes, and with his 97-year-old wisdom, he replied, “You have to love their soul. Some people are impossible to deal with in their human form, but it’s our souls that God sees and loves, and we need to do the same.”

So, President Trump, as I sit here and cry over the dissolution of DACA, your ban on transgender individuals into military service, the border wall, repeal of the Affordable Health Care Act, what appears to be your despicable support of the hateful white supremacists, your misogynist views on women and total disregard for the environment by pulling out of the Paris climate deal, along with the desire to make the USA great again by purging all undocumented immigrants, I’ll honor my father and pray that somewhere in my heart I can find love for your soul. I just hope that this energy I’m placing on you won’t be totally wasted; that you actually do have a soul and that it’s worthy of love.

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Jackie Madden Haugh

Born in San Francisco in 1952 to the son of Irish Catholic immigrants and the daughter of silent movie actors, Jackie Madden Haugh was the only girl surrounded by three brothers. With a life filled with loud noises and testosterone, she found herself often hiding in her room, complete with journal in hand. Years later, those journals would lead to her first memoir, My Life in a Tutu. As the mother of four, she often reflects on their life together in her monthly column for the local newspaper, The Los Altos Town Crier. Jackie loves writing in memoir. It is her opinion, “why make up stuff when your own life is fascinating.”

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