"Dee," a fifth grader at School 4 in the Rochester City School District, has some advice for Donald Trump. The 10-year-old, whose real name is being withheld, wrote a letter to the president-elect about the inappropriate and disrespectful language he used during the campaign, she says. Dee says Trump can do better.
"I know you wanted to be president of the United States, but you didn't have to say and do those things that hurt other people," she wrote. "I know deep down in your heart, you didn't want to say or do those things. You shouldn't have to be somebody you are not just so people can vote for you."
Dee's teacher, Yun Amy Zhan, posted a copy of the letter to Trump's Facebook page and plans to send it to either the White House or to Trump's residence in New York City.
Dee came to the US from Tanzania with her family six years ago. She decided to write to Trump after an incident that occurred two days after the presidential election. Zhan took some children to a horse-riding trail earlier that day and was driving Dee home when another driver pulled up next to them in downtown Rochester. The other driver yelled at Zhan, who is Chinese-American, using an Asian slur, Zhan says. When Zhan asked him not to frighten her student, he directed a racial slur at Dee and then drove off.
Dee was shaken, and put her thoughts into her letter.
"He looked at us like we were crazy and shouted disrespectful things about my teacher and her race and her driving," Dee wrote. "He used a very negative and inappropriate word about me and my skin color. That made me feel like I didn't matter."
Dee, who says she wants to be a doctor, doesn't blame Donald Trump for what the driver said. But she wants Trump to know that he's accountable for his actions and that he should set a good example because others are watching him; they may think that it's O.K. to be disrespectful, since he has been, she says.
"I want him to become the president we need him to be," she says.
Dee says she didn't care whether Trump or Hillary Clinton won the election. The president of the United States, whoever it is, has to be a good person and treat everyone with respect, she says. And she would like Trump to come to School 4 to visit her and to meet her teacher and her classmates.