Respecting the Office of the US President Doesn’t Require Endorsing the Behavior of the Person Holding the Position

August 28, 2018

Mr. Tiger Woods                                                                                                                              Any Renowned Golf Course, USA


Dear Mr. Woods,

As someone who highly esteems you because of your professional achievements and, more, for the relentless ways you confronted personal demons to rebuild your life after cracking foundations nearly demolished the whole structure, I can’t believe you publicly excuse Trump’s anti-immigrant policies and his love for white supremacists, which of necessity means hatred of people of color.  Perhaps you have no close connections to

Condemning policies of Trump when they are demoralizing and causing physical harm to your fellow Americans is not disrespectful to the Office of the President.

immigrants or, say, Black people.  No wait!  Do you not realize the help a simple paragraph from you condemning Trump’s policies could do?  Had your own mother originally tried to enter the US today, she might be waiting in a Homeland Security cage to be processed.  And Trump’s racism stirs the killing of innocent, unarmed Black youth in the streets by police who will never be prosecuted; you might have been a frightened Black kid coming out of a convenience store and running when police chased you for you-can’t-imagine-what, and the wrong policeperson at the wrong time wanting fame and Trump’s approval might have shot you–leaving an arm or a hand or heart nonfunctional.

Trump talks with Tiger Woods after he captured the 2013 WGC-Cadillac Championship PGA golf tournament in Doral

The Office of the US President is not a person; it is a political position filled by a person, a person like the rest of us.  When she or he acts in unbecoming ways, we do not OK them because they were done by the president.  In fact, because of the Office we hold the person in the role to the highest of standards.  You could have condemned and you still can condemn the policies of Trump when they are demoralizing and causing physical harm to your fellow Americans.  This is not disrespectful to the Office of the President; in fact, it would be one of the most respectful moves you could make.


David Albert Farmer