I’m sorry that I haven’t written in awhile. It’s not because you aren’t on my mind. It’s just the opposite.
You see I work for a nonprofit funded by DHHS. Our contract ends on July 31st. We’ve been waiting since January for a funding opportunity announcement (FOA) to begin the competitive bidding process. The submission process is sixty days. Even if the FOA comes out today, the contract being awarded for an August 1st start is highly unlikely. There are a couple scenarios that might ‘save the day.’ The reality is a temporary shut-down for an intermittent amount of time will dismantle the agency. If we are awarded the contract, that is predicted to be 5-20% less, it will be challenging to reconstruct our crisis intervention services. I’m concerned not only for our hard-working staff being furloughed but for the youth in crisis that go un-helped.
I imagine at your level you aren’t aware of how your transition team’s decisions or indecision is affecting human service agencies on the frontlines. You are busy dealing with your White House team. Your 100+ days has been swirling chaos. I’m observing it on Politico and CNN as a helpless bystander. In particular, your timing of the termination of FBI Director Comey makes me feel like we are all living in a never-ending Tom Clancy novel.
And this gets me to the reason for my letter. I wanted to recommend a book for you. I’m currently reading Jack Kennedy Elusive Hero by Chris Matthews. I have found true solace and inspiration in these pages of history. Matthews does a terrific job of portraying this man from pre-WWII through his legacy. A lifetime of pain and illness forced regular intervals of convalescence. JFK utilized these periods of isolation to read. He was a life-long student of knowledge. He worked on thoughtful assessment of the past, present and future impact of his decisions. I wasn’t a huge JFK fan before. I am now. I think you could find a connection to this admirable man who has served in the same office as you. Curling up with a good book might provide you with sanctuary and guidance.
As always President Trump, have courage and be kind.