I’m no legal expert, nor am I a psychologist.
But I am a writer and by virtue of that, a student of the human condition — an obsessive observer who mentally hoovers up the goings-on of our world so these can be synthesised and repackaged into some semblance of information for consumption, discussion or otherwise.
And yes, I have worked for the (not-always-really-that) evil MSM which, contrary to the opinions of some, does not mean I’m some brainwashed regurgitator of the ideology of this side or that.
Having watched the train wreck that was the USA since the catastrophic 2016 US presidential election, something I’ve said over and over again is that Trump was the president America needed and deserved.
The events of January 6th are proof of this, as are some of the consequences of this moment of uprising and insurrection against the US by domestic terrorists.
Both sides of the political divide are understandably aggrieved by the Trump-incited violence and treason perpetrated against US democracy on January 6th.
The incoming Democrat administration throw up their hands with an implied “we told you so” gesture to their opposition of GOP Trump sycophants who slowly edge away from the narcissistic autocrat who handed them power in 2016.
Calls to impeach Trump — for a second time — may seem to make sense and have merit on the surface as a powerful symbol of restoring democracy.
But here’s the rub — the time for ‘powerful symbolism’ is over. It’s this that in many ways got the US in the toilet-bowl in the first place.
It’s symbolism that drove Trump to power as America loaded Clinton down with a ton of negative symbolism — some merited, most not — and painted Trump with the glowing symbolism of standing for the forgotten, the disaffected, the sidelined.
The US and the world don’t need more of this symbolism — the US needs practical, realistic action.
The time for lessons and making examples of people like Trump is done — this traitor to both the country and beliefs he purports to hold so dearly needs to be called to account in a way that is far more practical and with wider-reaching consequences for his actions.
And the incoming Biden administration can’t get itself tied in knots trying to get ‘justice’ done merely for the face-value of such when instead it needs to focus on tackling the real issues facing ordinary Americans: COVID-19, a damaged economy, growing income inequality and race, amongst a multitude of others.
A punishment to fit the crime
No, just no.
Impeaching Trump again will just continue to feed him and his supporters the oxygen and attention they crave and feed on to keep his cult going.
Impeachment will suck much-needed clear air and oxygen from the incoming Biden Administration that has the chance to affect real change now that that it has proper legislative punch in Congress.
Impeachment is just a distraction and unworthy of the energy or attention of either Congress or the American people.
Impeachment keeps Trump the at the top of the billing of the great big political reality TV show he has starred in for the past nearly five years.
And even blind Freddy knows that Trump’s worst nightmare is not being the centre of attention.
Not commanding the room.
Becoming irrelevant, invisible, diminished.
Twitter, Facebook and even Google have begun this process, dismantling the apparatus that provided the megaphone Trump needed to command his supporters.
Sure, he might move to Parler or MeWe or other new platforms that spring up as the FAANGS step in and try to clean up their dirty social acts. Some pundits argue this is more dangerous than having Trump on the more highly visible and accessible platforms and I can understand why — deep in those shadowy webby places, he and his followers might incite and plan further actions to damage, hurt, maim, destroy.
And the failings of authorities to stop the events of January 6th that were advertised on the more open platforms feeds the fear of what might happen if Trump and co are relegated to fomenting their SAD plans in more nefarious digital echo chambers where authorities are even less inclined to notice.
Which, of course, raises the question many are asking about January 6th — why was more not done when it was so clear the Capitol looked ripe for exactly what eventuated?
Why was more done to ‘put down’ BLM marches?
January 6th should serve as a wake-up call to the FBI, DOJ and other authorities vested with protecting the American people.
That they must do more.
But I digress.
Punishing Trump is as simple as letting him fade into history and not become a permanent ongoing fixture in it. Villains and anti-heroes often take up such large places in the history books and for good reason — so that we remember their crimes and don’t repeat the mistakes of the past.
I’m not advocating erasing the last four years of Trumpism, not at all. Americans must learn from those interminable four years and never forget the atrocities Trump wreaked on their country and themselves. And maybe the Democrats have the most to learn from the tawdry time of Trump?
Impeaching Trump will satisfy the loudest voices and feel like a victory to many.
But not impeaching him will hurt him more.
Trump wants to be impeached so that he stays in the spotlight, remains relevant, is the ‘star’ of this latest political drama.
A non-speaking role in public life where he just fades into the background as nothing more than an extra or inconsequential bit-player who has no platform, voice, say in anything that matters is far more hurtful to him.
Far more fitting a punishment.
Let the DOJ prosecute him for the crimes he has committed.
Let the states that are after him for all kinds of alleged financial crimes do the same.
Let Dominion sue him civilly in the same way they are suing Powell for the damage her defamatory statements have caused their business.
Let Trump become nothing.
And let this be the last time I write of him.