Dear Mr. President Elect;
Imagine my surprise late in 1989 when I received a phone call from an old banking client of mine:
“Dave, I’m working for a new casino. You’ve probably never heard of it. It’s called the Trump Taj Mahal. I’d like you to meet with me and my bosses so you can pitch your marketing services.”
“Glenn,” I replied, “I’ve been in a casino once in my life, I’ve never gambled and my whole portfolio is made up of financial services companies.”
Four months later, I had that appointment and twenty-four hours after the meeting I was called and asked to take over current projects and begin marketing work for the pre-opening of the Trump Taj Mahal.
Mr. President Elect, years later I would tell people that I imagined you would have been very surprised to learn that the agency that was doing the consumer direct mail for your new casino… the largest in the country, was one man working out of his studio apartment.
At that time you were not in politics and I didn’t know the term blogger and had never written for any Internet sites. Ours was a very lucrative arrangement… at least for my business. You paid me well and in full… in turn I delivered you the best marketing and copy of which I was capable.
Twenty-six years have passed since that time and our country has changed in many ways. But one thing is constant… we are a great nation that has not yet lived up to our full potential.
Thousands of our citizens go to sleep hungry every night and don’t know when they will receive their next meal. Manufacturing has virtually left our country and with it the jobs of millions of Americans. Racial strife and prejudice have largely not changed. In fact, in this election cycle, they have emerged and perhaps flourished with what they believe is a new found liberty and acceptance.
While, perhaps, your campaign has encouraged this, as I have told others, while I haven’t supported your candidacy, I don’t believe you hold the views of some of your extremist followers. I hope I am correct.
In the intervening years since I provided services to the Trump Taj Mahal, much has occurred. We have seen the horror of September 11th and engaged in wars where we never should have been, while overlooking the genocide that has taken place in many parts of the world.
Our students have been subjected to standardized tests that not only don’t serve their interests but handicap teachers in providing them with a well-rounded education. Our nation is now more divided than at any time in recent history. Of course, we have experienced many positive changes as well. I’m hoping we will be able to sustain them.
Mr. President Elect, you have a monumental task that lies ahead. Luckily as a self-funded candidate, your only allegiance is to the people of this great country of ours. You don’t have to follow the ideological beliefs of anyone. You do have to search your soul an—in consultation with others—determine how best to lead our country so that we may flourish and be a reassuring power and partner with all the nations of the world.
Sir, I supported Bernie Sanders. Though your core beliefs may be very different, you both had a vision for a government that would finally be responsive to the people of our nation. Now, you must find a way to live up to that promise. You are no longer “The Donald” entrepreneur and businessman. You are the leader of the free world and the most powerful individual of that world. You no longer have the luxury of speaking whatever comes to mind without forethought… you must weigh your words carefully. Every statement you make will have great implications and consequences.
My hope is that you will rise to the challenge, fool all those including myself who didn’t support you and take your creativity and savvy knowledge of individuals to help make America a stronger, kinder, more united and tolerant nation. Are you up to the challenge? Will you be able to overlook personal slights, not be immediately reactive but rather reflective and find a way to unite our divided nation?
My guess is yes. I’m betting on hidden strengths and talents you’ve never been asked to call on before. Your task is a daunting one. You will have to fight four years of opposition, choose between good and bad advice and the whole host of negatives the leader of a divided nation must endure.
I can’t speak for my fellow Americans, only for myself. Just as you so graciously declared in your acceptance speech you will represent all the people. I was impressed when one of your first statements was that you would look for the “untapped potential” of our citizens.
Mr. President Elect, if you can live up to the promises made in your acceptance speech you will have a very successful presidency. Of course, words are only words until they are turned into action and reality. I believe you meant what you said.
Sir, we differ in many of our basic philosophies. And America, being the great democracy that it is, allows me to disagree and challenge you when our opinions collide.
Will you let the leaders of your party influence you with their ideology or will you surround yourself with individuals holding a variety of opinions? Will you be open to ideas and concepts that may at first seem alien?
Will you help save our nation and the world by embracing and pledging to help eliminate global warming? You will get lots of resistance from your party. But what do you owe them? Nothing. You owe Baron and all the youngsters of this world a better and safer country and world in which to live.
It’s not too early to think about what you’d like your legacy to be. This will enable you to act with forethought, restraint and what you truly believe will lead our nation to become its best self.
Mr. President Elect, I pledge to support you whenever I can and to protest and let you know when I feel you are going in the wrong direction.
Will you make part of your legacy that of listening to the people of our nation and the world and work towards the lofty goals of protecting our citizens while providing all of us with a future that looks forward rather than backwards?
Mr. President Elect, if you will be reflective, proactive and work towards ensuring all our citizens of a humane quality of life, I will do my best to support you.
The ball is in your court, sir. You are now the leader of the free world. I hope you will pick up the chalice, surprise all your critics and lead our country into the future as a nation to be admired for its democracy, foresight and commitment to the principles of our great Constitution.
G-d Bless you as you embark on the greatest journey of your life and the most important responsibility you now have for the well-being of all America’s citizens.
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