Dear Hillary: A Letter From One White Woman to Another

Dear Hillary,

I'm not going to pussy-foot around: I need you to grow a pair of cojones the size of Texas and get deeply in touch with your inner badass. I know she's in there. We need to hear her roar.

I write you this letter because I read Evan Osno's must-read analysis of the Donald Trump campaign in the New Yorker: "The Fearful and the Frustrated: Donald Trump's nationalist coalition takes shape--for now" with a mounting sense of worry.

Before that article, I viewed the Trump campaign the way many of my peers do- as a joke that will flame itself out. Why would anyone vote for someone who is so offensive, insubstantial, and juvenile?

After reading the article, I am scared- very scared- that Donald Trump could become the next President of the United States. He is an astute salesman who is making this campaign about race, stoking white people's fear, racism and xenophobia and using his limitless resources to woo us. He is extremely dangerous and irresponsible and is taking this country down a path of hatred that is already having horrific impacts on our most vulnerable.

Hillary our country needs you to be the next President. Women and girls all over the world need you to be the next President. We are counting on you to break that ceiling. And we definitely need to make sure that man does not become President.

To win, you have to read the tea leaves, honey. Look at Christine Quinn. You will not win by being the most qualified moderate candidate with the best policy positions and the endorsement of the elite. You are not going to win by playing it safe and droning on about your experience. You will not win by answering questions from Black Lives Matter activists like this, surrounded by your white staffers.

Demographics are in your favor. But in order to win you have to be completely genuine, spice it up, and throw red meat out there to get your supporters riled up.

In short, you need to let your freak flag fly.

Let me tell you why I know this. The 2015 Edelman Public Trust Barometer tells us that trust in institutions is at an all time low and people trust people like themselves.

I am 100% your demographic- I am a 46 year old white mother of two, lifelong activist and feminist, raised a Methodist in a solidly Democratic family, a lawyer, I attended a prestigious all women's college in Massachusetts.

You are not making me frothy. I cannot name one out of my very diverse group of friends who froth for you either.

We feel like we have no one to vote for, only someone to vote against. That does not bode well for you.

You know when I felt something for you? When Yoko Ono shared that you two fooled around together back in the seventies. That makes you relatable and interesting.

I am not making light of serious issues. The stakes in this race could not be higher. But politics is not just about policy, it's about likeability and relatability.

Here are some suggestions to get people like me to froth for you:

1) Start off everyday with this song in your earbuds. Make this your anthem.

2) Be more open, vulnerable, and badass. Trust me, no one cares about those emails or philanthropic recordkeeping. Don't get distracted by that stuff. Say how you really feel. Be bold. You set the agenda, don't respond to foolishness.

3) Make sure your staff optics are right, you need a lot more flava in your pics. Lose the Pottery Barn background, get in front of a taco truck.

4) Cultivate Black Lives Matter, the immigrants' rights movement, the LGBT community, the justice reform movement, the reproductive justice movement. The folks in those movements are extremely passionate and will get people to the polls for you if you ally with them. If they sit this out it would be disastrous for you. Work with them to build your agenda. This will enliven your base.

5) Come out hard in favor of gun control and mental health care. Reasonable people are exhausted of the stagnation on this issue. We should not have to worry about whether our kids are safe in schools, churches, and movie theaters, or whether we are safe at work.

6) Create a website where all the folks Trump wants us to hate- women, people of color, gun control supporters, etc. can post what they are doing to ensure he doesn't win, such as registering people to vote or helping people become US Citizens.

7) Call up Shaggy, Pitbull, Los Tigres del Norte, and Calle 13. Ask them to collaborate on a very catchy song lambasting Trump and encouraging everyone who hears it to become a US citizen, register to vote, and show up on election day. Record it in multiple ways- as Norteño, dancehall, hip hop, salsa, merengue, reggaeton, and cumbia. The video should include Trump kicking Jorge Ramos out of his press conference.

8) Sign on as many Millennial, Latino, and Women celebs as you can- America Ferrera, Rosario Dawson, Jennifer Lopez, Sofia Vergara, Eva Longoria, John Leguizamo, Lady Gaga, Pharrell, Taylor Swift, Katy Perry, Beyonce, Rihanna, Justin Bieber, Justin Timberlake, Kendrick Lamar, Ellen Degeneres, Oprah. Seek their guidance about how to mobilize their fan bases to support you.

9) Engage Facebook, Twitter, UBER, Lyft and AirBnB to design the best, most massive get out the vote mobilization ever.

10) Have more fun. People want to support and be around people who are fun. Take good care of yourself and spend time with people who make you laugh.

I hope you win!


Karen Fleshman