My Turn: Sliding deeper into the abyss

Jan. 31st was a low point in American history — a day when our nation slid deeper into the abyss of unchecked authoritarianism. If you don’t believe it, picture this:

Your house is burgled. Your neighbors saw and recognize the thieves — heard them talking about the crime as they pulled off the heist. Their faces are captured on video.

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Turns out, it’s a group of young men from wealthy families, so they have connections and top-knotch lawyers. Still, you go to court armed with evidence, witnesses, and a sense that justice will be done.

As the judge complains that there’s no evidence to pursue the thieves, he rules that no witnesses or evidence can be presented. The perpetrators are exonerated, your property is gone, and your faith in the American justice system dashed.

That’s pretty much what happened on the mightiest U.S. hill in a sham impeachment trial presided over by the highest justice in the land. That trial solidified the plutocratic rule that neocons and corporate extremists have been working to put in place for over 40 years. They successfully dismantled rules of law and justice meant to insure that the people sitting in the highest seats of power are treated no differently from the citizens who elect them.

So, please, FOX pundits, tell us how this is different from how justice is meted out in China or Russia; and explain what deep freedoms Republican leaders are so intent upon preserving other than the right to bear arms and for corporations to pay low wages, low taxes, poison the environment, and steal safety nets from everyone but the rich.

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For the U.S., and the world who’s watching us, Jan. 31, 2020, will be a day that will live in infamy. To save our democracy and our nation’s critical international standing, Americans of all stripes must acknowledge that Trump’s impeachment trial was unjust, un-American, and a threat to the future of our republic. And, because of that truth, citizens must vote those bad actors out of office in November. Our democracy and our shared futures depend upon it.

Janice Palma-Glennie is a resident of Kailua-Kona