In “an open letter to the American people” published Tuesday on Literary Hub, a growing list of more than 470 authors that includes Stephen King, Junot Díaz, and David Eggers lay out their case against the presumptive Republican nominee.
The authors’ opposition to Trump, detailed in just 214 words, includes “because the history of dictatorship is the history of manipulation and division, demagoguery and lies” and “because neither wealth nor celebrity qualifies anyone to speak for the United States, to lead its military, to maintain its alliances, or to represent its people.
“Because the rise of a political candidate who deliberately appeals to the basest and most violent elements in society, who encourages aggression among his followers, shouts down opponents, intimidates dissenters, and denigrates women and minorities, demands, from each of us, an immediate and forceful response,” the letter continues. “For all these reasons, we, the undersigned, as a matter of conscience, oppose, unequivocally, the candidacy of Donald J. Trump for the Presidency of the United States.”
The letter, written by authors Andrew Altschul and Mark Slouka, is part of a larger #WritersAgainstTrump social media campaign. The group is also asking anyone who would like to sign the letter to do so on this petition, which has more than 3,000 signatures at the time of publication.
A spokesperson for the Trump campaign did not immediately respond to our request for comment.
The anti-Trump sentiment from America’s literary giants comes amid strengthening support for Trump against likely Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, who trails the New York businessman by a thin margin, according to the authoritative Real Clear Politics poll average.
The race is not looking particularly rosy for either candidate, however, with more than six in 10 Americans saying in a recent NBC News/Survey Monkey poll that they dislike both Trump and Clinton, pushing them to search for a third-party option.