At the beginning of the election cycle, I didn't know much about Donald Trump. I knew he was a filthy-rich billionaire. But what I didn't know was that people who had fear in their hearts, who harbored racism and who believed in the decline of America were so down in the dumps that they were willing to believe Trump.
Matthew is 13 years old, in the eighth grade. He won't be able to vote this November. But we at The Huffington Post were so inspired and encouraged by his message -- with its decidedly un-Trumpian wisdom, humility and hopefulness -- that we're launching a contest for teens to tell us: why don't you want Donald Trump to be president? Because as we approach this election, it's more important than ever to hear the voices of young people who will live with its consequences, even if they aren't able to cast a vote.
So if you're 13 to 19 years old and, as Matthew put it, "don't want to have to live down a reputation of America as racist and hostile throughout your late teens and early twenties," here's how it works:
-- Send an essay of up to 500 words on what you think Trump doesn't understand about America in the body of an email to TeensAgainstTrump@huffingtonpost.com. Or use your iPhone to record a video under two minutes.
-- Your deadline is February 15th (President's Day!) at 10 p.m. EST.
-- We'll select 10 essays to publish on HuffPost.
-- Then, we'll pick a winner, who will appear on HuffPost Rise and HuffPost Live (and receive a tote bag full of HuffPost swag).
As Matthew wrote, "Yes, I am young and there are many things that I do not understand. One thing that I do understand, though, is that Donald Trump should not be allowed to hold any office of power in this great country of ours." If you agree, we want to hear from you.