A Child’s Guide to Impeachment

November 20th, 2019 Posted by Susan's Musings 45 comments

While I do try to keep up on politics, I have not followed any of the House impeachment hearings. Obviously, I haven’t written about them either.  At home I have a shelf of classic children’s stories that explains my nonchalance.

The Little Engine That Could tells the story of a train loaded with fruits and vegetables, toys and books that cannot make it up a steep mountain incline. Forced to stop, it pleads with other locomotives passing by for help so that the children on the other side of the mountain will have what they need. Along comes an arrogant train, a down-in-the-mouth train and others who refuse the small train’s supplications. Finally, a small engine comes along and is moved by the plight of the toy clowns and stuffed dolls. Repeating the mantra, “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can,” the engine’s dedication and devotion to the task at hand allow it, despite its small stature, to pull the  train over the mountain.

As praiseworthy as the train might be, and as much as I may have read the story countless  times in the hopes of teaching the importance of persistence to my children, people can be dedicated and devoted to wrong causes as well. Since election night 2016, many Democrats have remained single-minded in their resolution to get rid of  President Trump by means other than electoral. The facts, the truth, precedents  and reality have little to do with their constant impeachment mantra, “We think we can, we think we can, we think we can.”

This leads to another favorite read-aloud, The Emperor’s New Clothes. Here, the king and his courtiers and eventually the entire town are duped by two charlatans pretending to weave and sew magnificent royal garments. In fact, they are pocketing the riches they have been  paid and that were  intended for luxurious fabric and precious jewels. To avoid detection, these frauds explain that only high-quality people can see the clothes; they are invisible to others. Finally, as the king parades his “new garments” before the town while actually wearing only his underwear, a small child shouts out, “The Emperor is naked!”  The courtiers at major media outlets have been genuflecting before Democrat Party shills since Mrs. Clinton lost. They may see this as proof of their brilliance, but the rest of us know that, in order to do, so they are rejecting all standards of reporting that used to make them worth reading. They are naked.

The Boy Who Cried Wolf would have been a wise choice for their reading lists. The shepherd boy repeatedly yells “Wolf!” when no actual threat to his flock exists. After the townspeople come to his aid over and over again, only to discover that he has been mocking them all along, they learn their lesson. In his case, when the menacing wolf eventually does appear, no one pays attention to his cries. President Trump’s activities vis vis the Ukraine may or may not be critically  problematic. I highly doubt it, but I have no inside information. However, at this point, I have stopped listening to the media’s cries. They have no integrity left with which to command my attention.

Dedicated and devoted individuals and groups can, indeed, cause much damage. They need to be guarded against and opposed. However, I don’t need to treat their arguments as worthy of analysis.  If I am interested in fairy tales, the brothers Grimm are less scary than Adam Schiff – and far more entertaining.


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Nancy says:

Renaming the players in an reenactment of the tale of Henny-Penny might provide us a bit of entertainment. Although it would be hard to come up with much better characters than Goosey-poosey or Turkey-lurkey, might Fox News best fit the role of Foxy-woxy or should it go to Shiffy-whiffy?

Susan Lapin says:

I forgot about Henny-Penny, Nancy. The characters do represent quite a few people over the past few years.

lee says:

Thank you Susan for your insight

Susan Lapin says:

Feel free to nominate your own book, Lee.

Thank you, Susan.

Susan Lapin says:

You are very welcome, Laurie.

Susan Hire says:

Churchill had to deal with a biased media, and it was funded by people’s taxes like NPR and PBS. I can’t imagine what would have happened if he had to deal with 24/7 news like we have today.

Susan Lapin says:

Every politician has supporters and detractors, Susan. Mr. Churchill – and Abraham Lincoln – and every other powerful leader dealt with lies and unfair treatment and insults. Since President Trump’s election, there seems to be a hysteria. Technology is definitely a contributor.

Mark says:

Susan — I agree with you 100%, and the three stories you used to explain your perspective are perfect.

Susan Lapin says:

Mark, Nancy below suggested adding Henny-Penny. It would be fun to think of others too.

Bonnie Franklin says:

I totally agree!

Debbie says:

Whoa..so true. I keep thinking it seems as though all the demons in hell have been unleashed. What I do know, our country sure needs a very heavy dose of The Bible, every day of their lives.

Susan Lapin says:

That would certainly help, Debbie.

Don Mullet says:

I love it!! It sure is getting old though!

Susan Lapin says:

It sure is, Don. That’s why people are tuning out.

Martha Weldon says:

Another brilliant post, my friend! And so very “spot on!”

Susan Lapin says:

Thanks, Martha. Do you think it might spark a discussion on Friends of Rabbi Daniel and Susan Lapin? Perhaps a competition to name more titles that represent today’s “movers and shakers”?

Ramzy Boutros says:

Dear Mrs Lapin, your phrase “However, at this point, I have stopped listening to the media’s cries. They have no integrity left with which to command my attention.” is wonderfully eloquent.

Susan Storjohann says:

I can’t add anymore–you’ve nailed it. Just glad to hear there others that think as I do.
Another “Susan”

Susan Lapin says:

We Susans must stick together!

Barbara Miller says:

Thank you, Susan, for your usual wisdom, wit, and spiritual insight. Inspirational!!

Susan Lapin says:

I wish it were more of a laughing matter, Barbara.

Ben McFie says:

I really enjoyed this post. The way you related the current events to children’s stories is fantastic! Since you requested more titles, I would suggest Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel. Like Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel, both the democrats and the media are digging themselves into a hole. They are trying to prove claims they’ve made even though they’ve never been quite sure if they are true. The more people stop and watch the more furiously they dig! Maybe, like Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel, these people will end up “in the cellar” with only stories to tell. Maybe, like Mike Mulligan, they could even have a second career as a janitor!

Susan Lapin says:

I love this, Ben. They also produce a lot of hot air.

Ben says:

Yes they do!!! Good point!

Lenore Maslonka says:

Thank you for a wonderful start to my day!
Think this is one of your best.

Susan Lapin says:

Thanks so much, Lenore.

Mary says:

Great analogy, as always.

Susan Lapin says:

Mary, I hope these stories are still being read.

Karen B says:

Another that may work in this reading list are the Tales of Br’er Rabbit….

Susan Lapin says:

Karen, I never read those tales. Don’t know why, but they weren’t part of my repertoire.

Lyna says:

I have 2 to suggest. First, “The Little Red Hen” who tried to get her neighbors to help plant the wheat, etc., then only fed her children when they came begging.
Second, “Thidwick the Big-Hearted Moose” by Dr. Seuss. Thidwick lets a tiny Bingle Bug hitch a ride, but soon is overwhelmed by free-loaders, leading to a crisis when hunting season opens. Good for discussions about bullies, self respect, and property rights (owner vs squatters). This was released in 1948, which may explain the ‘not PC’ storyline. (Gee, wonder why it is hard (impossible) to find in libraries today?) It is available to buy with an online search.

Susan Lapin says:

Lyna, good suggestions all.

Greg says:

As smart, insightful, and eloquent a commentary as I’ve read in a long, long time. Wow. You are a blessing.

Susan Lapin says:

Thanks for writing, Greg.

Mark Z says:

wasn’t there a song about John Henry, a steel driving man?

Susan Lapin says:

With the wonders of internet searches, that should be easy to find out, Mark.

Kevin says:

The only thing I have learned from the hearings is that the president was right to question and or withhold aid from a corrupt government to investigate why a former vice president’s son received 83k dollars a month from a corrupt company in a corrupt country and for what possible purpose should a vice president’s son receive such a large sum of money for no expertise in the field at all! Impeach him you say? I say give him a character award or a medal of honor for calling out such obvious corruption.

Luis Sanabria says:

What fairy tale fits this story?
Over 3 hundred thousand white Republican Christian men went to war with other white men and gave their life to free black men and women from slavery. Many thousands more were wounded and disabled.
Yet when we ask “who freed the slaves?” The answer is: Abraham Lincoln.
Not the millions that voted for Lincoln even after he signed the Emancipation Proclamation and sacrificed their life to get it done.

Pat says:

Very interesting and spot on column Susan. What has always perplexed me about the “leaders” who perpetuate lie-filled and partisan destruction of opponents, is that when they are with their kids and grandchildren, knowing the job they do impacts the future of their loved ones, how do they do what they do? How can they possibly teach integrity, compassion, honesty with a straight face? I could not imagine being married to someone who lied for the sake of power.

On another note, it grates me when a government employee or elected official is praised for “devoting their life to public service.” That is appropriate for military members who put themselves in harms way. For members of Congress or bureaucrats – it’s called a job. Any American who works at a job is devoting their life to serving the public.

Stefanie McMillian says:

I agree it got tiring to listen to the Democrats trying to impeach President Trump and making up stories. Thanks to the Lord the truth got revealed and the Democrats are left with embarrassment. I wonder if they know how ridiculous they really became and how horrible it is to involve a country like Russia who doesn’t have our best interest anyway. Kudos to President Trump to stand and strategically combat the Democrats!

Neweverymoment, Deb:
One book nobody should read is “Rules for Radicals”: Accuse your opponent for what you are guilty of; repeat The Big Lie until it is believed. “The Little Red Hen” represent President Trump, who ran for president when he realized that he was the only one who could get the job done, and could persuade other nations to play fair: win-win. Nobody would help the hen create the “bread”, but everyone was willing to help her eat it. Her “Who will help me…?” was answered with “Not I”, then “I will”, but her response–before and after–was “Then “I’ll do it myself”. Go, Susan! You do put your finger on critical current issues.

Lacey Hochleutner says:

Haha! I really enjoyed this article. It has made my day. Thank you, Susan! 🙂

JasB says:

This morning I was helping my daughter understand a book she had to review for a class she was taking. After a couple of hours of interesting reading and discussion I said to her, “This book is no longer academic. It’s prophetic.” The book? The Anti-Federalist Papers, which can be found on Amazon and other sites. Just reading Centinel or Brutus will give you a quick understanding of what is already here as well as what is coming. What is NOT coming is someone who will do our work for us or save our country.

Daniel Haun says:

The greatest harm is the precedents that will stand. Our constitution is under attack like never before. The founding fathers established three separate branches of government, executive, legislative, and judicial. Separation of powers is a fundamental principle which protects us. The latest ruling by a President Obama judge destroys executive privilege. We have a great battle ahead of us, with Hollywood, the media, the professors, and the deep state (establishment) voices to inform the millennial’s and the Z generation of the principles which have kept this great nation.
It is not a surprise the Prime Minister Netanyahu under attack as well.

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