Well hi, how are you? I hope you are having a nice time ice skating with your granddaughter — my friend and I were until you reminded us of what the majority of Americans think is the country’s latest blunder. It’s funny that you picked us out to talk about this. What gave us away? I know we fit the demographics of Hillary Clinton supporters: We are both college-aged women and I’m Black, but we left our “Stronger Together” signs at home. You got us, as much as I tried to tone down my liberalism to keep everyone in the suburbs of Michigan calm, you saw right through me.

You seem like a nice person and I appreciate your openness, politeness and maturity when discussing Donald Trump’s win. I am not taking it as well as you are. You are happy but I am left in a numb and groggy state similar to when I got my tonsils removed. I am surprised that Trump won the election, but I am mainly disappointed. “Really,” I think to myself on a daily basis, “people really chose him?”

Obviously, it is not fair to demonize Trump supporters. Just because he was endorsed by the Ku Klux Klan doesn’t mean all of his supporters are racist. He makes statements that condone sexual assault, but not all his supporters agree with these remarks. When people decide to vote for a candidate, they make that decision based on many different reasons. The importance of the economy, national security and other issues caused Trump voters to overlook his inflammatory remarks.

While racism and sexism are issues some people may be able to compromise on, for me they are not. This is probably because I am a Black woman, but you do not have to be a minority or a woman to realize that these issues are serious and not something to just write off. You may not think about these matters as much as I do, but if you are at all aware of the United States’ history and legacy of racism and sexism you would pay attention to them. If a candidate constantly criticizes women in a way that reduces them to their appearance, that is a major problem. If a grown man claims that a president’s birth certificate is not valid because he looks different and has an uncommon name, that is ridiculous. Expecting a president not to be racist or sexist should not be too much to ask.

You need to explain how you reconcile voting for Trump, a man who clearly disrespects women, with having a granddaughter. Did you think about how your granddaughter would feel if Trump treated her the way he treats Megyn Kelly or Rosie O’Donnell? Were you aware of the sexual assault allegations directed at him and did you hear what he called “locker room talk?” While voters expect presidential candidates to be critical of their opponents’ experience and ideas, it is not OK to lob insults like “nasty woman” at them. Even if you don’t identify as a feminist, I think that we can both agree no woman should be reduced to something that Trump, or anyone, can grab and insult as he has bragged about doing.

You also told me to give people like you a chance, but I think you need to be more concerned about whether or not the man you elected is willing to do that. Entrusting the task of bringing jobs back to America to a man who uses overseas manufacturers seems counterintuitive. The same businessman who criticizes China’s trade policies and says that they hurt U.S. businesses has his clothing manufactured there. Doesn’t this contribute to the problem?

You may have been one of the voters stressing the need for a relatable “Washington outsider” — but Trump does not seem to be the best fit for this idea. He’s a billionaire — not exactly your average Joe. Technically, he is a “Washington outsider” in the sense that he has never held public office. That does not mean he can relate to most Americans or will be able to implement policies that benefit the majority of Americans. Trump was born wealthy; he has lived in an ivory tower for all his life and hasn’t taken much interest in the lives of others until recently.

The man you elected is hilariously unqualified to be president. Honestly, why would you give the presidency to someone with absolutely no experience? By that logic, if I need surgery I should just overlook all the surgeons with years of experience and ask a random rich guy to carry out the operation.

I feel as though I have no choice but to give Donald Trump a chance since he won the election. I cannot scream “I object” while he takes the oath of office and expect that to stop anything. But I also cannot look at his presidency with an open mind when his statements and actions show that he is a self-serving, racist and sexist man. Telling me to give him a chance is like telling me “don’t knock it until you try it” about something that I know I detest.

Corey Dulin can be reached at cydulin@umich.edu.

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