This year we sent out variations on the following message, and I'd like to share it publicly now:
"Dear Family and Friends,
"Megan, Olivia and I want to try something different this holiday season. To say that the election this year was a disappointment would be a huge understatement. We honestly believe that this is a dark time in our lives, politically speaking. So we are asking all of our friends and family members that might be sympathetic to the mess that our country is in to please do this for us: instead of giving us stuff for the holidays, we would like you to take every penny that you would have spent on us and instead donate it to one of the causes that are going to be under siege with a Trump presidency.
"I know we have tried to do this in the past, to unplug the "Christmas Machine," but it somehow always got away from us. But this year we are going to ask you all to please forego ANY holiday giving to us. No little tokens. No “just a little something to open.” No stocking stuffers. Nothing. Take every cent you might have spent on gifts of stuff and instead give that money to something truly worthy. (Kids are, of course, exempt; we are happy to get something for the kids!)
"Last Week Tonight, John Oliver’s show on HBO, had some excellent suggestions and we are sharing them with you below. This is the complete list of John Oliver’s recommended charities, but feel free to find your own. You know what the issues are. And if you have a preference on a charity to which you would like us to donate in your name, please let us know. We'd love donations to the Trevor Project or the Trans Lifeline.
"An article on John Oliver can be found at https://www.inverse.com/article/23698-john-oliver-donate-trump-list-president
"The Trevor Project, for LGBTQ youth: https://give.thetrevorproject.org/checkout/donation?eid=63307
"The Mexican-American Legal Defense Fund, for immigrant rights: http://www.maldef.org/ways_to_donate/index.html
"Planned Parenthood, for women’s reproductive health: https://secure.ppaction.org/site/Donation2;jsessionid=FA6641A45265C5F542940F5929F82A7B.app259b?df_id=12913&12913.donation=form1&s_src=Evergreen_c3_PPNonDirected_shorturl
"The Center for Reproductive Rights, also for women’s reproductive health: https://www.reproductiverights.org
"Natural Resources Defense Council, if you care about climate change: https://www.nrdc.org
"The International Refugee Assistance Project, for refugees from ISIS and other world tragedies: http://www.refugeerights.org/donate/
"The NAACP Legal Defense Fund, to fight racism: http://www.naacpldf.org
"The Trans Lifeline, a suicide and help line for trans youth: http://www.translifeline.org/donate
"We all believe that is truly one of those times when like-minded people need to band together, walk the walk, and put our money not only where our mouths are, but where it will do the very most good for the most people. It’s up to us to shine as much light as we can in these dark times.
"To better days (and holidays) in the future. And know that we love you all.
"Always, Megan, Tom and Olivia"