Last week I mentioned (https://plus.google.com/u/0/102251509192760989541/posts/4XkCKT81KbX
) the endorsement of Trump by the New England Police Benevolent Association. Yesterday I sent the association the following letter.
Dear New England Police Benevolent Association,
My attitude towards police has historically been is that they have a very hard job, are generally doing the best they can, and that citizens should support them in that job. I think that policing is a very important job, so I also think it's important to hold police to high standards. There's just too much harm that occurs if the job is done poorly or with ill intent. But I've believed in balancing those high standards with support and understanding for the challenges of the job, and giving police what they need to do their job well.
Your endorsement of Donald Trump has changed that attitude. I see Trump as a fascist, advocating policies (an immigration ban on Muslims, rounding up and deporting 11 million people) and making statements (e.g. that Muslim-Americans cheered the planes crashing into the Twin Towers) that demonize loyal and productive Americans. I think the best comparison to Trump's policies are those of Nazi Germany, in which Jews and other minorities were scapegoated, rounded up, and killed by the millions. Many of my family died during that time.
For all these reasons, Donald Trump is my enemy. He is the enemy of the America I believe in -- one that values religious freedom and diversity, and creates communities that span disagreements, ethnicity, religion, skin color, and upbringing. I will do anything I can to stop him and the movement he currently leads from moving America further towards fascism.
Your endorsement has been a wake-up call to me. I've thought of Trump's popularity as worrisome, but I've still had basic faith in my country. I have not believed that he would get the Republican nomination, nor win if he did. But part of how Hitler came to power was through paramilitary gangs, and a police union endorsing Trump violently raises that spectre.
As you can probably imagine, those images makes me afraid to send this letter -- afraid that, in defiance of anything I've previously believed, I might be attacked and targeted by the policemen that, in theory, serve my community. With your endorsement, however, I think the situation has moved past the point where I can afford to be guided by my fear.
Because of your endorsement, you've lost the faith of at least one member of the community you serve, and I'm not sure how or whether you can regain that. But nonetheless, I urge you to reconsider your support for Donald Trump. He and his followers are very dangerous to the ideals and soul of this country.