Photographer Brandon Stanton, the creator of “Humans of New York” (HONY), is known for letting his photography subjects speak for themselves.
But now, Stanton is speaking for himself in an open letter to Donald Trump he posted on the HONY Facebook page on Monday.
“I’ve come to realise that opposing you is no longer a political decision,” Stanton writes. “It is a moral one.”
And it looks like Stanton isn’t alone. An hour after being posted, the letter has already been shared by more than 100,000 people.
Here’s it is.
And here’s the full text.
An Open Letter to Donald Trump:
I try my hardest not to be political. I’ve refused to interview several of your fellow candidates. I didn’t want to risk any personal goodwill by appearing to take sides in a contentious election. I thought: ‘Maybe the timing is not right.’ But I realise now that there is no correct time to oppose violence and prejudice. The time is always now. Because along with millions of Americans, I’ve come to realise that opposing you is no longer a political decision. It is a moral one.
I’ve watched you retweet racist images. I’ve watched you retweet racist lies. I’ve watched you take 48 hours to disavow white supremacy. I’ve watched you joyfully encourage violence, and promise to ‘pay the legal fees’ of those who commit violence on your behalf. I’ve watched you advocate the use of torture and the murder of terrorists’ families. I’ve watched you gleefully tell stories of executing Muslims with bullets dipped in pig blood. I’ve watched you compare refugees to ‘snakes,’ and claim that ‘Islam hates us.’
I am a journalist, Mr. Trump. And over the last two years I have conducted extensive interviews with hundreds of Muslims, chosen at random, on the streets of Iran, Iraq, and Pakistan. I’ve also interviewed hundreds of Syrian and Iraqi refugees across seven different countries. And I can confirm — the hateful one is you.
Those of us who have been paying attention will not allow you to rebrand yourself. You are not a ‘unifier.’ You are not ‘presidential.’ You are not a ‘victim’ of the very anger that you’ve joyfully enflamed for months. You are a man who has encouraged prejudice and violence in the pursuit of personal power. And though your words will no doubt change over the next few months, you will always remain who you are.
Commenters are weighing in on Stanton’s letter on Facebook thanking him for his candor. Many of them are from people outside of America, who agree with Stanton’s opinions on Trump’s potential presidency.
“Thank you for raising the voice against his blatant racism and representing the true feelings of every muslim around the globe! ,” writes a commenter from Pakistan.
“From every other part of the world, we are wondering how he is even getting so many votes!” writes another user from India.
You can see the full post and more comments here.
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