A singer with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir has resigned instead of performing with the famous group at the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump, whom she compared to German dictator Adolf Hitler.
More than that 19,000 people, most of whom are Mormons, have signed a petition that calls for the choir to reverse its decision to perform at the inauguration on Jan. 20, The Salt Lake Tribune notes. Singers are allowed to opt out of a lottery that will be used to choose who will perform for Trump.
But Jan Chamberlin did not wait for a reversal in policy, and announced her resignation from the choir on Dec. 29 in a letter that she also posted on Facebook:
It is with a sad and heavy heart that I submit my resignation to you and to Choir. I’m am praying that Jesus will help me get through this email before I totally break down…
Since “the announcement,” I have spent several sleepless nights and days in turmoil and agony. I have reflected carefully on both sides of the issue, prayed a lot, talked with family and friends, and searched my soul.
I’ve tried to tell myself that by not going to the inauguration, that I would be able to stay in Choir for all the other good reasons…
I’ve tried to tell myself that it will be alright and that I can continue in good conscience before God and man.
But it’s no use. I simply cannot continue with the recent turn of events. I could never look myself in the mirror again with self respect…
I also know, looking from the outside in, it will appear that Choir is endorsing tyranny and facism by singing for this man.
And Choir’s wonderful image and networking will be severely damaged and that many good people throughout this land and throughout the world already do and will continue to feel betrayed. I believe hereafter our message will not be believed by many that have loved us and adored what we have stood for.
I know that I too feel betrayed.
Tyranny is now on our doorstep; it has been sneaking its way into our lives through stealth. Now it will burst into our homes through storm…
When I first auditioned and entered Choir, it was to follow deep personal impressions, and to honor my late father, who was among the best of men. Now I must leave Choir for the same reasons. My father (who was an expert airforce bomber) hated tyranny and was extremely distraught over the holocaust. He and Mom both loved people greatly.
I have deep patriotic feelings for this country and for the freedoms of people everywhere throughout the world. I am troubled by the problems we face which seek to destroy our love for liberty and respect for humanity internationally.
History is repeating itself; the same tactics are being used by Hitler (identify a problem, finding a scapegoat target to blame, and stirring up people with a combination of fanaticism, false promises, and fear, and gathering the funding). I plead with everyone to go back and read the books we all know on these topics and review the films produced to help us learn from these gargantuan crimes so that we will not allow them to be repeated. Evil people prosper when good people stand by and do nothing.
We must continue our love and support for the refugees and the oppressed by fighting against these great evils…
I only know I could never “throw roses to Hitler.” And I certainly could never sing for him.
Sources: The Salt Lake Tribune, Jan Chamberlin/Facebook / Photo credit: Laurel Fan/Wikimedia Commons, Jan Chamberlin/Facebook