Donald Trump is an individual who I can clearly say I do not necessarily like but his impeachment I definitely dislike for two reasons and this post will cover one of them in great, great detail. My reason for disagreeing with his impeachment is the reason they are impeaching him. Of all the things Donald has done they chose to impeach him because he spoke to Ukraine to, let me paraphrase, google Joe Biden. The Democrats said he is threatening their democracy but has the United States of America not threatened the socio-political systems of other nations? By butting in, are they not undermining that nation’s sovereignty?
Fairly recently, the people of Venezuela were unhappy with their president Nicolas Maduro and while they were complaining, Juan Guaido stated that he was constitutionally the interim president for Venezuela. Canada, the United States and other nations recognized Guaido and called for Maduro to step down. This is direct evidence of the USA interfering with another nation’s system of government as Maduro was elected and nobody asked for the United States’ opinion.
Some aid groups that send resources to Africa have been doing so with strings attached. They state that they will give aid if the countries change their laws on “reproductive rights” in a direction that may be against their culture. These types of actions are forcing nations to work against their social standards out of economic need.
Donald Trump expressed his support of Brexit and while some people complained, it was nothing like their reaction to him talking to Ukraine. Ukraine is fighting Russia and it is okay for the USA to join a fight that is not theirs. Syria is having a civil war and the US saying we can fight if we want to and force them to get rid of this dictator. The US can break all ties with Cuba and leave them in the sixties if they want to and it is okay. You should have seen how angry they were when Edward Snowden leaked information. Funnily enough, as an America whistle-blower went and hid in Russia, a Russian whistle-blower is hiding in the US.
Not only the United States but most of the Western world has created a double standard that no one is allowed to affect them but they can force others’ hands. With these pieces of evidence am I saying that we should ignore atrocities going on outside our country? No but I am saying that if we will react the way we are, we should ignore the illusion of sovereignty or find a better way to express the interdependence of nations.
2 thoughts on “Autonomy?”
First off, let me say thank you for the political commentary! As my constant references to Social 30 demonstrate, literature is improved with social knowledge just as much as social is improved by good writing. Plus, modern politics are the reason why we do all the learning we do about the past, so I am glad to see someone discussing an issue that is so current and applicable to our lives. I enjoyed the opportunity to think about an issue that exists not only within a novel but within day to day life, and I appreciate your willingness to share your perspective. Politics can be a touchy thing, and I think dialogue about issues is the best way to be informed.
For future explorations, I have a couple of suggestions to strengthen both your writing and your argument. As much as I have tried, I cannot turn my position paper brain off. In terms of ELA growth, I would suggest watching your GUMPS and your sentence variety. Reading the same type of sentence over and over can make the piece feel repetitive, so adding varied lengths and interesting diction will hold the reader’s attention more effectively. In addition, the piece felt a little bit scattered. Sometimes, in the midst of writing something, we forget our central argument…I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to delete a section of a position paper that was miles off-topic because I wanted to talk about something else. That being said, ensuring that all of your evidence and thoughts connect back to your thesis makes your point airtight.
Because this piece is a political take, it comes with some added responsibility. I would advise taking care not to over-simplify your issue and your evidence, and to avoid a conversational tone. While broad strokes and casual words may be appropriate for normal free-choices, commentary on such a politically loaded issue requires a different measure of seriousness and intellectual honesty. Part of that intellectual honesty comes from providing full detail of your event and your evidence for the reader so as to allow them to remain informed and draw their own conclusions (sources for information also help).
As I have said before, I cannot turn off my position paper brain, but my debate brain is just as persistent. As my final thought on your post, I wanted to provide a little counter-argument to illuminate the issue even further. Also, like you, I have been dying to talk about this issue, so I’ll take whatever chance I can get.
Though you briefly listed several examples of the US’ undemocratic behaviour in this post, a bit more digging into the events mentioned reveals that many of them don’t support the stated argument. In the case of Venezuela, the election of Maduro was preceded by an extended period of political unrest and extreme poverty that caused parts of the population to starve. Because of this context, his re-election was highly questionable, and was believed by the majority of the international community to be fraudulent. For this reason, the US involving itself in that election was actually an attempt to preserve democratic principles, not an attempt to undermine it. In the case of aid to Africa, these actions are not undemocratic. They are debatably immoral, but the sending of aid by independent humanitarian groups with strings attached has nothing to do with the US undermining democracy. Brexit, on the other hand, is technically a case of the US involving itself in a very minor way in the affairs of another country, but the expectation of the global community was to give an opinion on this issue. The US did not involve itself directly, it simply followed the example of various other nations and gave an opinion on an issue that would undoubtedly have an impact on the US going forward.
Your comment about a disproportionate reaction to Ukraine does not follow the evidence stated in the impeachment inquiry. The reason for Trump’s impeachment inquiry is that he allegedly utilized a foreign power to gain political dirt on an opponent, and abused his position of power by threatening to withhold aid from Ukraine if they do not assist. This is hardly the same thing as commenting on an internationally discussed issue, and treating the two as an even comparison is not entirely truthful. Regarding Syria, that is undeniably a debatably democratic action taken by the US, but it is about more than just sovereignty. The US’ national security has a stake in Syria, and thus its involvement could be justified under this reasoning. It is not, as the issue with Ukraine is, an action that is purely undemocratic for no reason besides personal gain.
Your statement about the US “leaving Cuba” is, to my knowledge, untrue, as Cuba essentially forced the US to leave them alone. Prior to the exit of the US, the US was in position to constantly undermine Cuba’s sovereignty, and thus the exit of the US was a point for democracy, not against it (I am unsure if I am interpreting your argument correctly…I would love to have a bit more context to better my understanding).
Even if all of your stated evidence was in total support of your thesis – that is, that the US has been undemocratic in the past – it still would not support the idea that Trump should not be impeached. Treating an entire country’s involvement in foreign affairs, a practice that is common and not against any law, as the same as one individual’s alleged abuse of power to gain political information from a foreign power is false. These two concepts simply do not map on to each other this evenly. In addition, the central argument is based upon the Tu Quoque fallacy (Latin for “You Too” fallacy). This fallacy is essentially when criticism is refuted by stating that the person making the criticism is also guilty. This does not prove that the criticism is invalid; you can be a hypocrite and still be correct. Even if the US has been undemocratic, this does not rob them of the right to punish a leader who is undermining democracy.
Thank you for reading my mini-blog in response to your blog! I love a good political discussion, and I thank you for giving me an outlet for my hot takes. Have a great rest of your break!
See you at debate club,
– Best_Schools. “15 Logical Fallacies You Should Know Before Getting Into a Debate.” TheBestSchools.org, Thebestschools.org, 1 Aug. 2019, https://thebestschools.org/magazine/15-logical-fallacies-know/.
– Herrero, Ana Vanessa, and Megan Specia. “Venezuela Is in Crisis. So How Did Maduro Secure a Second Term?” The New York Times, The New York Times, 10 Jan. 2019, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/10/world/americas/venezuela-maduro-inauguration.html.
– Press, The Associated. “A Look at US Involvement in Syria’s Civil War.” Military Times, Military Times, 19 Dec. 2018, https://www.militarytimes.com/news/your-military/2018/12/19/a-look-at-us-involvement-in-syrias-civil-war/.
– “Trump Impeachment: A Very Simple Guide.” BBC News, BBC, 19 Dec. 2019, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-39945744.
– “Timeline: US-Cuba Relations.” BBC News, BBC, 11 Oct. 2012, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-12159943.
– Ray, Michael. “Edward Al Jazeera. “Who Supports the New Brexit Deal and Who Is against It?” UK News | Al Jazeera, Al Jazeera, 17 Oct. 2019, https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/10/british-political-parties-world-leaders-react-brexit-deal-191017113033717.html.Snowden.”
– Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 2 Oct. 2019, https://www.britannica.com/biography/Edward-Snowden.
Dear Maria, that was amazing. To help my sanity, I will refer to your points in order that my brain went when I was reading your lengthy comment.
As I was writing this, I would think of adding a piece of evidence or an example and thought, “Oh man I do not want to get called out by someone, probably Maria” and looky what we have here. I personally thought I did a good job with sentence variety but I am willing to keep working on that for future pieces of writing. I guess I took advantage of the fact that this was a free choice to ramble on and I will look to work on that too in the future. I am glad that we are able to start a discussion on this and I am surprised at how much effort you put into a blog comment.
To start off, my criticism of autonomy should not be taken to say that I think we should turn a blind eye to all things going wrong in the world (seen in your Venezuela argument).
Another thing to consider during this piece is that I took the idea of sovereignty to the extreme as I like to do. With this lens, any action to affects the way another country operates would violate sovereignty. Too the extreme I took it to, autonomy would allow no foreign trade because then a nation is dependant on another and would have to make politico-economic agreements (Cuba, Syria and impeachment).
I do admit I was talking about to different topics in terms of democracy versus sovereignty/autonomy. But the US is in a way denying power to Venezuela to have their own elections despite how inaccurate the vote may have been. (See above argument)
My argument involving African aid was weak an I completely acknowledge what you said.
Your last point was really enjoyable and I have never thought about it and I like it. To argue that point, while the “you too” does not make it invalid, it definitely weakens a criticism saying that “we both need to clean up so calm down”.