The Prism: Every Side of the Story

Andrew Johnson

IMPEACHMENT: An investigation and subsequent trial in which the accused, if found guilty, will be removed from office. It does not mean the direct removal of said person from office. 

DISCLAIMER: The Trump, Clinton, and Johnson impeachments are all extremely complex with years of context, this is a BRIEF overview of each. 

In the Media:

Donald J. Trump: 45th president of the United States. 

The many cases against Trump and their validity depend on who you ask and unlike previous presidents Clinton and Johnson we don’t have the hindsight of history. Like Clinton and Johnson, the motion to impeachment is more than the crime that he’s being brought upon; it’s a move to remove an unpopular president. Trump has been criticized for his policies that flirt with racism, his dealings with his family business, possible collusion with Russia, attempted obstruction of justice, inflammatory public statements, close encounters with white supremacy/neo-nazism, among other issues. Trump currently sits with a 49% approval rating, the highest it’s been all of 2019.  Needless to say like Clinton and Johnson, in certain circles, Trump is not well-liked. After two whistleblowers have come forward accusing Trump of extorting the Ukranian government for investigations on his political adversary’s son, impeachment actions have been set in motion by the democratic party. Currently, impeachment is in progress as Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani gets a lawyer and the rest of the Trump administration scrambles with more and more leaks and whistleblowers coming out. But will this be as politically motivated as the other two impeachments? 

In Contemporary History:

Bill Clinton: 42nd President of the United States.

Clinton was called to testify in the Paula Jones lawsuit, based on a claim that Clinton had sexually assaulted Jones, and under oath, he claimed that he was not having sexual relations with another woman, Monica Lewinsky. He specifically said “there is nothing going on between us” and when it was revealed that he was having or did have a relationship with her at the time of the testimony the use of the word “is” was called into question. If “is” meant he wasn’t having a relationship with her when he said that then he told the truth, but if “is” meant he never had a relationship with her, that would be a lie and he had lied under oath and that’s a crime worthy of impeachment. This became the charge of purgery that was brought up and the whole impeachment was based on. It went through Congress and following a vote Clinton was brought up with a 45 guilty and 55 not guilty rulings on perjury and 50/50 split on obstruction of justice and he was allowed to stay in power. 

In History: 

Andrew Johnson: 17th President of the United States. 

During the Civil War, Andrew Johnson was the rare Union supporting southern Democrat so of course he would be the perfect VP for the president who wanted to save the union. He was chosen to create a bridge between the North and South during the war, but he was never supposed to be president. This all changed when Lincoln was assassinated. With Radical Republicans controlling Congress, Johnson’s time as president was not expected to last. Congress was looking for any chance to impeach Johnson hence the drafting and passing of the Tenure of Office bill which limits the president’s ability to fire members of the cabinet without congressional approval. The reason this was done was that Johnson wanted to fire his secretary of war, Edwin Stanton, who was a holdover from Lincoln. Johnson didn’t like this and he hired Lorenzo Thomas to fill Stanton’s role but Stanton didn’t see himself as fired due to the Tenure of Office bill. Stanton barricaded himself in his office and Congress enacted impeachment based on the idea that Andrew Johnson violated the Tenure of Office Act by appointing Lorenzo Thomas. Andrew Johnson was impeached but he was not removed because he had a 35-19 vote in congress (35 guilties and 19 not guilties), which is one below what was needed for removal, making him the first United States president to be impeached. 


HOTTER THAN A CRUCIBLE


There aren’t words to describe Hadestown! I saw it right before it opened and my first reaction was that I wanted to go see it again! For the uninitiated, Hadestown is an original musical by Anaïs Mitchell and directed by Rachel Chavkin (Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812 / The Royal: A Play in Six Rounds) based on the myths of Hades and Persephone, and Orpheus and Eurydice. But what makes it so good?  

TSAI ING WEN

In the summer of 2015, Tsai received an endorsement from the late John McCain, allowing her to become the first female president of the Republic of China. She is the seventh president of the Republic…

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In the Media
Doctor Christine Blasey Ford
On September 27, 2018 doctor of psychology Doctor, Christine Blasey Ford testified on national television against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Dr. Blasey Ford’s testimony is the zenith of the #MeToo movement. Dr. Blasey Ford is not the first woman to question the fitness of a man for the supreme court due to his actions, but her testimony was polarizing in the contemporary political field. Dr. Blasey Ford’s testimony and #MeToo has helped fight for the rights of victims of sexual assault and abuse. Even though Dr. Blasey Ford failed to stop the appointment of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, her actions have propelled the movement.

In Contemporary History
Attorney Anita Hill
On October 11th, 1991 Attorney Anita Hill testified on national television against Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. Attorney Hill’s is notable because of how her accusations affect the modern world. Attorney Hill was one of the first women to accuse man in the power of misconduct. She did this in a time that sexual assault victims weren’t trusted or shunted to preserve the assaulter’s reputation. Attorney Hill sacrificed her reputation and public life to plant the seeds of a movement that would aim to protect women that have been in her position.

In the History
Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor
On September 25, 1981, Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor was sworn in and joined the bench of the supreme court. Twelve years later she was joined by the infamous RBG. Sandra Day O’Connor was the first woman appointed to the Supreme Court. She was known for being the deciding vote in multiple cases. In her early career, she was denied paid jobs in law firms because of her gender. Her actions shattered the glass ceiling of the Supreme Court.

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In July of 2018 the New England Confectionary Co. (Necco) went out of business. This posed a threat to the infamous Conversation Hearts candies this Valentines Day season, causing many to be upset about the end of a nostalgic tradition.

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