Democracy in danger

The impeachment inquiry is a sign that our democracy is functioning and protecting us from an undemocratic leader.

An+impeachment+inquiry+has+been+launched+by+U.S.+Democrats.+President+Donald+Trump%E2%80%99s+contact+with+Ukraine+is+at+the+center+of+the+inquiry.
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Democracy in danger

An impeachment inquiry has been launched by U.S. Democrats. President Donald Trump’s contact with Ukraine is at the center of the inquiry.

An impeachment inquiry has been launched by U.S. Democrats. President Donald Trump’s contact with Ukraine is at the center of the inquiry.

Photo courtesy of: Gage Skidmore/ Flickr

An impeachment inquiry has been launched by U.S. Democrats. President Donald Trump’s contact with Ukraine is at the center of the inquiry.

Photo courtesy of: Gage Skidmore/ Flickr

Photo courtesy of: Gage Skidmore/ Flickr

An impeachment inquiry has been launched by U.S. Democrats. President Donald Trump’s contact with Ukraine is at the center of the inquiry.

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The first time I heard the word was in my elementary-school history class. It seemed that my teacher was not able to rid it from her mouth fast enough, spitting the word out like it was dirty: “Impeachment.”

Landing in the open classroom, the word seemed to grow, coating everyone’s mind in fear. Impeachment was a last resort, something that was only brought about when something had gone terribly wrong in our government. It reflected a failure in America’s quest to “form a more perfect union.” Impeachment meant chaos. In my young mind, impeachment was nothing but bad in any situation.

As I have grown older, I have heard the word tossed around more freely, especially in the era of Trump. At the Women’s March, I saw it in fiery orange letters on thin poster board: “Impeach Trump.” In government class, I learned about it in the Constitution: impeachable offenses include “treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.” And most recently, I have been reading it in news articles: “Pelosi launches formal Trump impeachment inquiry.”

Impeachment is not a dirty word, it is a necessity to protect our country and our democracy from an undemocratic leader, Donald Trump.”

— SENIOR Isabel Nissley

After a whistleblower exposed Trump’s improper communication with the Ukrainian president, Democrats launched an impeachment inquiry. It may be easy to react with fear to the possibility of the president being impeached. However, it is also important to recognize that the possibility of impeachment is a sign that our democracy is functioning, protecting us from an undemocratic leader.

Since his election in 2016, concerns over Trump’s ability to serve as president have been raised. Some of his actions have been unpresidential, while others have been unconstitutional, uncomfortably stretching the bounds of our democracy. From Trump’s uncontrolled tweeting to Russian interference supposedly propelling him to his 2016 electoral victory, there is ample reason for concern.

Most recently, Trump’s phone call with Ukraine suggests that he was soliciting help from a foreign nation in an election. Not only does this undermine the legitimacy of Trump winning the 2016 election, but it also puts into question the fairness of the 2020 election.

The premise of our democracy is built on the right to vote and hold fair elections. Trump’s invitation for foreign nations to influence our elections goes against these very principles, making impeachment not only an abstract Constitutional concept, but a concrete reality that we must accept if we want to preserve our democracy. If Trump is removed from office via impeachment, he would no longer be able to directly harm this country and the people within it.

Now, I hear the word thrown around constantly, on the radio, in the newspapers, and by my peers. It seems that people are not able to say it enough, the word comes out of their mouths with urgency: “impeachment.”

I will join their ranks in saying it. Impeachment is not a dirty word, it is a necessity to protect our country and our democracy from an undemocratic leader, Donald Trump.

All views shared in the Opinions section of The Chatterbox belong to their respective authors, and may not represent the views of the publication as a whole.