To Impeach or not to Impeach?

Baylee+Stafford%27s+notes+on+imperial+presidency+from+her+government+class+taught+by+John+Corbin.

Baylee Stafford's notes on imperial presidency from her government class taught by John Corbin.

Forty-fifth President Donald J. Trump was impeached on Dec. 18, 2019. 

This impeachment is only the third to occur in the United States. CHS Bonfire is doing an Op-Ed series on the impeachment, and the staff members were curious to find out the students’ opinions on the matter. We sent out a survey to the student body asking for their opinion on the impeachment. Access survey results here: https://infogram.com/president-trumps-impeachment-1hdw2jd3eygx2l0

Out of 65 students, over half of the students polled didn’t think that Trump should be impeached. 

“The allegations against Trump have nothing to back them up. Liberals are just hateful and want him gone in order to have the power,” a student pointed out. 

Another student explained, “Because the issues that we’ve seen with Trump have been mostly in his character, what he’s actually done for the country is marginally more important.”

“Abuse of power is not a high crime or misdemeanor,” a student said. “It is people in the other party not liking how the President has used his power.” 

“I don’t think they have brought any true or relevant or actual real crimes against him. Other than just broad ‘misuse of power’ it seems very feelings-based.”

Some were in favor of the impeachment. Most comments received by students touched on flaws unrelated to the impeachment. 

“Trump has been openly sexist, racist, and homophobic during his term. Plus his tweets are annoying,” one student responded.  

“A hateful man who violates the constitution, objectifies women, gives presidential updates over Twitter, and disregards minorities,” a student said. 

“President Trump has gone against the United States Constitution and the American people. He has obstructed justice, solicited foreign interference, and obstructed the inquiry itself for Impeachment.”

One student even mentioned that Donald Trump, being the president, thinks he is above the law. 

While many students seemed to be informed, there were those who simply didn’t have the knowledge or preferred not to share their opinions, stating “I’d rather keep my opinion to myself,” and “I am not firmly decided on one side.”

Informed or not, here are the basic facts regarding Trump’s impeachment. His predicament lies in his abuse of power and his obstruction of Congress through his dealings and conduct with Ukraine. But some students think otherwise “He hasn’t done anything to deserve the impeachment, or “I don’t pay attention to politics, but I don’t think that he should be impeached.”

While students talk about the impeachment in various settings, school is one place where they are learning about the process and the history of it. Students were also asked where conversations about the impeachment come up. Classes at CHS are helping students navigate the muddy waters of this particular impeachment. In government classes, students are taught about imperial presidents and have had debates regarding the impeachment.  

Whether they’re learning from school, home, social media, or friends, results from the survey stand to show just how polarized the topic is.