What's on Our Mind 8-25-2023

Last night marked a pivotal moment in our nation's history as former President Donald Trump surrendered himself to face racketeering charges stemming from his efforts to reverse Georgia’s 2020 election results. Trump’s processing at the jail underscored the fundamental principle that no individual is above the law. While this event casts a shadow on our country in some aspects, it also highlights the resiliency of our Constitution and the openness of our judicial system.
The 20 minutes that Trump spent at the Fulton County jail, where he was processed and released on bond, will inevitably etch itself into our nation’s history. In that moment, Trump cemented his legacy and became an everlasting symbol that the law applies to all. From the highest office in the land to the most local of office, everyone must follow the rules. 
Trump threw his political power, intimidation, and threats with full force at our legal system. But his attempts to manipulate the law to his advantage were resoundingly thwarted. The checks and balances woven into the Constitution, designed to prevent any branch—like the presidency—from overreaching, held firm.
Now, he finds himself at the mercy of the very institutions he sought to dismantle, and will rely on the protections of the Constitution which he also sought to dismantle. Trump thought he was different, but he is seeing he is not. He will be treated like any other defendant in America. His trial will be as common as another, minus media coverage and Secret Service presence. Privilege, wealth, status, power has no seat in the courtroom.
Our legal system's hallmark transparency will provide Americans with a front-row view of this trial. The media, exercising their Constitutional freedom of the press—rights that Trump also attempted to undermine—will share this trial with the nation and the world.
Trump’s indictments and trials will play out against the backdrop of the 2024 election. This will serve as a constant reminder of what is at stake if we do not keep the White House and elect more Democrats to Congress. Our democracy and institutions can only be as strong as those we elect to defend them. Elections have consequences.