Harper Lee Called Trump’s Taj Mahal “The Worst Punishment” From God in Letter


Donald Trump insists that everybody loves him. It didn’t seem true when he said it, but there was no way to disprove the claim. Now, finally, a 1990 letter from Harper Lee to Doris Leapard has given us the ammo we’ve always needed.

As reported in The Guardian , the letter was written by Lee just after a visit to Atlantic City. She apparently could not wait to tell her friend Leapard how awful the place was. In one of the most eloquent lines in all of letter-writing’s history, Lee says that “the worst punishment God can devise for this sinner is to make her spirit reside eternally at the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City.” This was the same year that the casino opened, so, perhaps word of Trump’s overbearing opulence had not made its way through the media and down to the home of Lee, and so the writer was unsuspecting in the terror that awaited her. Just wonder at the sensory ambush of entering a Trump property without first knowing it was a Trump property. Sad!

The contents of this letter were revealed as it is part of a chunk of letters from Lee, who passed away in February, that are set to be auctioned off online come March 31. The letters are all from Lee to friends, and are so great in number that they seem to have taken the place of her novel-writing for the decades in which they were written.

In another letter, to Bill Leapard, she writes of her taste in books, lamenting the bad work being written at the time — ’94. “As you know, I’d given up on novels written after Jane Austen’s time, and had lapsed with contentment into old fogeydom – there’s so much more to read; adolescents forever clawing at cosmic hickies is not my line of country.”

Man, what fascinating language. The bidding for the collection of letters will open at $750, which is far less than one would think. Who knows how high it will climb, though.