Loading...
Appears the interim director of Uptown Greenville has good knowledge of its operations. So let's look elsewhere, form a...

Bob Garner: Caution wise when prosecuting the president

Bob Garner.jpg
Loading…

Sunday, June 23, 2019

I know there will be some of you who will say, “Bob Garner ought to stick with exclaiming ‘Mmm-mmm’ over his food and stay the heck out of politics.”

Believe me, I get that, and generally I agree. One of the things I love about being a foodie is that food can often help bring us together over a shared table rather than dividing us even more than we’re already divided — and it’s a shame to argue about politics once we get to that table.

Having said that, I’m still going to venture an opinion on one of the great debates now roiling and tribalizing our electorate. I’ll try to keep my observation narrowly focused on just one aspect of that debate, and if I still become the subject of a withering “Bless Your Heart” reference from either side, well fair enough: I’ll try to accept it with a grin.

So here goes.

If Donald Trump does not win re-election (and that’s a big “if”), I do not believe he ought to be indicted after he leaves office on charges — especially “obstruction of justice” — that could possibly be perceived as part of an effort by a new president to prosecute and imprison his or her political opponents.

It isn’t that I don’t think such an indictment is warranted or might be successfully prosecuted, as so many former U.S. attorneys have suggested. It’s because I don’t believe it would be either the wisest course or in keeping with our overall values, prestige and reputation around the world.

Let me make it clear that I’m not referring either positively or negatively to impeachment but to criminal indictment after leaving office. I’m also not talking about failing to hold Trump accountable for any clear-cut criminal allegations — financial or tax malfeasance, for example — that might be brought to light by investigations already underway in the Southern District of New York or elsewhere.

Prosecution or imprisonment of a national leader by opposition politicians is a common feature of authoritarian regimes in most parts of the world — something that has, unfortunately, been carried out by dictators and democratically-elected leaders alike. Vladimir Putin in Russia, Kim Jong Un in North Korea, Hugo Chavez in Venezuela, Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe and Hosni Mubarak in Egypt, along with dozens of others, are all on the list of those who have pursued imprisonment as a political tool.

So far, it hasn’t happened in the history of our country. I sincerely hope it does not happen in Donald Trump’s case, either. America does not need even the suggestion of such a stain on the way we’re perceived around the globe.

Any new president needs to be focused on vision and policy even more sharply than on Trump’s accountability for previous wrongdoing. Whether impeachment does or does not go forward before the next election, the main job of a new president in the administration of justice will be to appoint a good, wise and non-controversial Attorney General who can win confirmation in the Senate. (Obviously, holding the House and winning control of the Senate is also extremely important.)

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been quoted as making the ill-considered remark that she wants to see Donald Trump “in prison” rather than being impeached. However, she should certainly want to make sure that any such outcome is totally free of the influence of a new Democratic president.

After all, the only prison sophisticated and tough enough to hold Mr. Trump is his own narcissism. And he will not escape that no matter what anyone else does or does not do to hold him accountable.

Bob Garner is a UNC-TV restaurant reviewer, freelance food writer, author of four cookbooks, barbecue pit master and public speaker. Contact him at bgarner2662@gmail.com. 

Loading…

Humans of Greenville

@HumansofGville

Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

Look

August 16, 2019

TODAY

Jazz fundraiser

The Churches Outreach Network will present an Evening of Jazz fundraiser from 6:30-9 p.m. today at Yankee Hall Plantation, 3332 Yankee Hall Road. The event, which will celebrate 11 years of service by CON, will include a three-course meal and a live jazz ensemble. Tickets are…

DSC_4731.JPG.JPG

August 14, 2019

Q: I decided to try to use olive oil instead of vegetable oil. Standing in front of the olive oil section I couldn’t figure out what to buy. Can you help? KP, Farmville

A: You share the same dilemma with many of us. On a recent trip to Boston I went into a great market that had an entire…

5cff256e6c8fd.image.jpg

August 11, 2019

Before she graduated from high school, Ghita Harris worked as a medical research assistant in the ECU School of Medicine, an opportunity that would have seemed to have put her on the fast track to becoming a physician. But more than two decades later, her journey has just begun.

The Greenville…

5d4dabb4703dd.image.jpg

August 11, 2019

Over 50 years ago, I had a Swedish girlfriend.

It never turned into anything long-term. But the fact that I met the Swedish girl before I met the girl I ended up marrying clearly introduced several complications into both relationships. And it has produced a tale that my wife Ruthie has never tired…

5cf84491e3f83.image.jpg

August 10, 2019

TODAY

Relay fundraiser

Relay for Life Pitt County will host its annual Purple Ribbon Charity Dinner and Silent Auction from 7-11 p.m. today at The Cotton Barn, 942 Laurie Ellis Road, Winterville. The theme is “Eat, Drink, and be Charitable.” Tickets are $50 each or $75 per couple. Visit…

August 09, 2019

TODAY

Play festival

Magnolia Arts Center, 1703 E. 14th St., will host the annual 10-minute Play Festival performance at 7:30 p.m. today. Tickets are $10. Visit magnoliaartscenter.com.

Music in the Park

Grimesland’s monthly Music in the Park series continues at 6:30 p.m. today at Grimesland…

August 09, 2019

Capsules of movies playing locally. New releases are indicated with an asterisk.

*BRIAN BANKS — The inspirational true story of Brian Banks (Aldis Hodge), an All-American high school football star committed to USC who finds his life upended when he is wrongly convicted of a crime he…

August 07, 2019

In the South, we have a connection to the land and its people. We root ourselves in the soil, nourish ourselves with the fruits and vegetables that grow and use products created from natural elements sold by seasoned craftsman and farmers.

All of these wonderful treasures can be found at a farmers…

5d477f86a47ed.image.jpg

August 07, 2019

Q: My doctor told me to use spices and herbs instead of salt in my food. I looked at the spice section of the store and really didn’t know what to choose. What is your favorite one? FG, Greenville

A: That’s a simple question for me to answer — it is dill. A jar sits on our dining…

5cff256e6c8fd.image.jpg

August 04, 2019

Being part of a group can oftentimes be intimidating and quite honestly scary, so when I was invited to be part of the Interfaith Clergy several years ago, I was excited and unsure at the same time.

I only knew two of the clergy in this group and being that I’m not clergy, I wondered if I…

5d420347bf206.image.jpg
133 stories in Look. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 14
        Next Page»   Last Page»