We all thought the U.S. was kept safe by our military, our intelligence agencies, our federal and state law enforcement agents and officers, and by the best judicial system on Earth. Since America’s establishment using the U.S. Constitution as the template for all legal actions, our political leaders have consistently worked with federal and state courts to make sure those small things in U.K. law from which our forefathers fled were guaranteed to never creep into U.S. law. And until now, they haven’t. But it appears it just might be happening now — though quietly and stealthily.
It was common in the United Kingdom for those of different social and economic statuses to be treated differently under the 1600s U.K. law. Theirs was a very “top-down” legal system that favored the wealthy and politically connected. Their laws were well planned and fair in their implementation, but enforcement became lax and unilateral. That atmosphere was a significant contributor to our founders’ decision to leave the British Empire for the New World.
In America, the Constitution very demonstrably guaranteed such arbitrary law enforcement as in Britain would not happen here. For 200+ years, it seemed to work well. It began to quietly change as the American populace began to withdraw from activism in government as social systems changed over the last few decades and we all just got too busy in our private lives. Where citizen involvement in government diminished, political control increased to fill the gaps. With that came extreme partisanship and arbitrary treatment in our justice system. That has evolved into similar treatment in the U.S. as in the British Empire in the 17th Century. And today, we see its results: almost unilateral law enforcement based on social, political, and economic class. That system is now front-and-center every day.
In the past two decades, we have recognized inequality in the Criminal Justice system. Court decisions regarding guilt and innocence and sentencing were (and in some cases still are) racially unfair. For example, in most drug arrests for possession of narcotics and distribution, statistics show African American offenders experience a much higher conviction rate and stiffer sentences than do White Americans. Why does that happen? After all, guilt or innocence and sentencing determined in the Justice system are to be racially blind. That’s a question that criminal justice experts and sociologists have investigated for decades. Study after study shows that racial bias permeates federal, state, and local law enforcement arrests, trials, and sentencing.
The purpose of pointing this out is to remind you that “Equal Justice under the Law” has been since 1776 an integral part of the protection for all Americans from inconsistent adjudication of penalties for crimes. Defendants’ rights are guaranteed Constitutionally. But that promise has been watered down year after year, in court after court, and now has found a foothold in civil proceedings just as in criminal cases. Politicians have watched as it happened and have slipped it into government operations at every level. It’s being used secretly in cases today where no crime has even been committed — like in impeachment.
I know, I know: impeachment is not a criminal matter. It’s a political matter. That fact has been stated over and over in the media during the last three years. Why not until now? Donald Trump wasn’t President. He is now, and most of the politicians who sit on the left side of the aisle don’t like his being President and want to find “a” way or “some” ways to drive him from office.
So why is the impeachment process, not a criminal operation? Because of the “Virginia Plan.”
The Virginia Plan
The Constitutional Convention in 1787 was full of heated debate over many issues of the Constitution. Those settlers had just escaped from the ruthless government of England’s King George III. Three Virginians together worked diligently to find a fair and equitable method to remove an American president (and other members of government) for specific wrongdoing. This was to guarantee Americans no monarch are despot could assume control of the government just because of being the nation’s leader. After considerable debate, those three Virginians agreed that a president should be impeached for “abuses of power that subvert the Constitution, the integrity of government, or the rule of law.” Those three were James Madison, George Mason, and Edmund Randolph. Members had already determined the necessity of including “acts of treason and bribery” that have since been considered as “High crimes and misdemeanors.”
Purposely our forefathers drew a line between criminal and civil actions for removal through impeachment. Their purpose was to keep despots and factions in politics from usurping control of the American government. Impeachment was designed so that between presidential elections, a president who used his or her office to take advantage of citizens and institutions could be removed from office without waiting for the next election. This method worked effectively for more than 250 years primarily as a deterrent for those in office who might be tempted. But it’s no longer working in the Trump Administration
Presumption of Innocence
“Innocent until proven guilty” has been a staple of criminal justice since the beginning of America. Because of non-royals’ arbitrary treatment as “guilty until proven innocent” in Britain, America’s settlers demanded that to flip in criminal cases. It has always been a staple in U.S. criminal justice and has even found its way into many civil proceedings. But there’s a catch to that.
The presumption of innocence seems forgotten in the so-called “court of public opinion.” When high profile criminal cases capture media attention, the public opinion seems to sway towards presuming the person is guilty – before he even steps foot inside a courtroom to have a judge or jury determine whether or not he is guilty. This ‘presumption of guilt’ in the public’s opinion can be devastating to reputations; careers; families, and almost every other aspect of life. Even if eventually found “not guilty” in a court of law, recovering from a public smearing of one’s name and reputation may prove impossible.
The problem we face in this run up to what is now almost certain to be the impeachment of Donald Trump as Leftist politicians with glee point to the standard set by our forefathers that differentiate between civil and criminal treatment in impeachment. Impeachment is NOT a criminal process — it’s strictly a political matter only. That means a President facing impeachment cannot claim ownership of the presumption of innocence. And so this group of Democrats are foaming at the mouth to go after Mr. Trump. Ultimately their unified purpose is to not only impeach the President but to drive him out of office. They view this issue of criminal vs. political as the straw which they have grasped to move the needle in their favor. They are universally giddy that they feel certain this is their “AHA” moment. They do not have to give President Trump the presumption of innocence. They can destroy him politically with impunity!
The Left have gone crazy with their newfound power. Their quest to find small tidbits of allegation of wrongdoing by Mr. Trump adds fuel to the fire of hatred that drives their every move. Speaker Pelosi handed the keys of impeachment to her bulldog, Rep. Adam Schiff who in his political career has never waited for facts but mounts attacks against those he identifies as his foes with whatever he can use to denigrate them politically while demeaning them personally. He’s basking in his current quest to destroy the Trump presidency.
But here’s what is happening: Mob Rule. Various hate groups from the left like Antifa and other disguised hard-left political groups have joined Schiff and his gang to in organized fashion to foment hatred of not just the President, but of all those who have and still do support him. Truth no longer matters. The loophole our founding fathers left in their roadmap for impeachment that the presumption of innocence is not a necessary element are driving all of these to whip the mob into a frenzy that will only grow stronger as their lust for destruction seems to be within their grasp.
It does not matter if their ploy achieves success or not. The horse of insurrection is already out of the barn and is ripping at the fiber of the foundation of our nation. It’s now OK to ignore laws, promote lawbreaking, wink selectively at those who break the “appropriate” laws, and teach our children and grandchildren that federal law is old, unfair, arbitrary and outdated. Therefore, we have every right to simply ignore it.
Sadly, it appears we just a few days ahead of the complete abolition of our Constitutional structure that will be termed to “be in the best interest of the majority of Americans” when it happens. And many Americans are and will be fine with that process.
Regardless of outcome, be certain that if this insurrection is allowed to succeed with the impeachment of the President and the Media in tandem with the Democrat Party assume government power for the next 4 or 8 years, American social, political, and economic structures and social interactions have paved the way for this destructive White House issue.
What will our nation look like if this leftist project is allowed by American voters to prevail in its local establishment? No one knows for certain. But one thing that IS certain is that if the Left and their Media attack dogs successfully remove Donald Trump from office, America as the historical leader of freedom among all nations will immediately die. Any type of socialistic political process will fail miserably. The problem is those who could stop this debacle are those who have been brainwashed by our grade school and college professors and teachers.
Is it too late to stop it? The answer to that is way above my pay-grade. All we can do is continuously speak truths to the two generations behind us as often as we can. Be vocal about capitalism, a representative democracy, And the Rule of Law in all your interactions with those you know and love.
And we can pray: pray for “all those in leadership over us,” and pray that God will somehow regain their mental and emotional factors.
Best to You,
Dan E. Newman