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Wed Sep 6, 2023, 11:31 PM Sep 6
Chemo for Democracyhttps://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2023/09/metaphor-legal-remedies-trump/675232/
With four separate criminal cases moving forward against Donald Trump, the rule of law in America appears both commanding and startlingly fragile. Small scenes at courthouses from Florida to New York underline the ever-present threat of violence. In Fulton County, Georgia, officials set up bright-orange security barriers around the courthouse in advance of Trumps indictment there. In Washington, D.C., fences and yellow tape surrounded the U.S. district court. Judge Tanya Chutkan, who will oversee the federal case against Trump for his efforts to overturn the election, has received increased protection from U.S. marshalsand perhaps not a moment too soon, as a Texas woman was recently arrested for calling in death threats against the judge. Trump, meanwhile, has been busy attacking Chutkan and other judges on social media, smearing the prosecutors bringing the cases against him as a fraud squad doing the bidding of President Joe Biden, and promising to turn the Justice Department against his foes should he win a second term.
Its a grim picture. The next 18 months could further undermine confidence in democracy and the rule of law, The Washington Post warned in June. Some commentators, largely on the right, have cautioned that the investigations and prosecutions of Trump might widen cracks in the already-unstable foundations of the American public sphere. Last year, the National Review editor Rich Lowry cautioned in Politico that U.S. institutions are ill-equipped to withstand the intense turbulence that would result from prosecuting the political champion of millions of people. Writing more recently in National Review, John Yoo and John Shu argued that even a successful prosecution of Trump for his efforts to overturn the election will leave many doubtful of the conviction and more distrustful of the Justice Department and the criminal-justice system, especially at a time when public trust in our institutions is already in decline.
As the threats of violence and attacks on the justice system show, these concerns are not unfoundedfar from it. But worrying about the dangers of prosecuting Trump is a bit like focusing on the risk that chemotherapy poses to a cancer patients health. The reasoning isnt exactly wrong; it just begins the analysis in the wrong place. The chemotherapy might be ugly, but it isnt the source of the problem. Its the treatment for the underlying disease.
During Watergate, Richard Nixons White House Counsel, John Dean, famously told the president that the scandal had become a cancer growing on the presidency. Trumps presence in American politics is similarly malignant. He has made the country meaner, uglier, and more violent. During his first term, he ate away at the protections guarding the U.S. system from authoritarianism, insisting on his own right to absolute power. For prosecutors to have ignored Trumps provocations would have been to allow the cancer to progressto acquiesce to his vision of a fundamentally corrupt politics in which the only constraint on power is the threat of vengeance.
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Chemo for Democracy (Original Post) Nevilledog Sep 6 OP
Good, very appropriate title. NJCher Sep 7 #1