More Than 2,400 Interfaith Leaders Request Meeting With Trump, Call For Truly 'Moral Agenda'
A group of more than 2,400 "progressive" faith leaders have strongly criticised Donald Trump in an open letter and asked to meet the president-elect in the hope of persuading him to pursue a "moral agenda".
The Christian Post (CP) reported the inter-faith letter originating from the group Repairers of the Breach which called for the meeting ahead of Trump's inauguration on January 20.
"Since your election, our communities have been fractured by harassment and intimidation," the letter reads. "People of color and religious minorities are afraid. Poor working people who you appealed to in your campaign are disappointed that you have attacked their union leaders while appointing Wall Street elites who use them to your Cabinet.
"And while we know no human being is perfect, we wish to speak with you about these moral issues because far too much is at stake for you to succumb to your worst demons while in public office."
Backers of the letter are critical of white evangelicals who supported Trump en masse in last November's election. Repairers of the Breach President, Rev Dr William J Barber II, called the letter a response to the "the theological malpractice of the so-called white evangelicals and others who placed themselves as the moral support of Mr Trump".
"We contend from the most treasured values of our faith traditions and constitutional mandates that addressing the economic liberation of all people, ensuring every child receives access to quality education, healthcare access for all, criminal justice reform, and ensuring vulnerable communities have equal protection under the law are moral issues," said Barber.
Those who have signed the open letter include Rev James Forbes, president of the Healing of the Nations Ministries; Rev Traci Blackmon, acting executive minister for the United Church of Christ's Justice and Witness Ministries; Rev Katharine Henderson, president of Auburn Seminary; Imam Tahir Kukiqi of the Albanian Islamic Cultural Center of New York City; and Lisa Sharon Harper, chief church engagement officer with the progressive evangelical group Sojourners.
Speaking to CP, Harper implied that Trump had appealed to racist sentiment. "Mr Trump, during his campaign, talked from the very first speech to the very last speech about people of color, immigrants, Muslims, as if they were not full human beings worthy of full dignity and protection under the law," she said.
"What we are determined to do to is to lift up a faith witness that reminds the public and Mr Trump that all of us, all of us are made in the image of God and as a result worthy of full protection under the law."