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Perspective: If this ain't the mess...


Former president Donald Trump has amassed 91 criminal counts across four criminal investigations. Many of my liberal friends are ecstatic, declaring, “it's about time.” I was going to go into a screed about his approval ratings, but that’s not really the point, is it? It’s that it is so hard to believe that we have made our way to this point, this mess.

Three years’ worth of investigations have painted a troubling picture of Mr. Trump. From enabling the events of January 6 to being recorded potentially interfering in the Georgia election to being told by his own lawyers that his behavior is… suspect, or just wrong.

The sinking feeling I have is all of this could have been avoided had Mr. Trump just graciously bowed out, and came out swinging in 2023. Instead, he chose to create a scenario of division that tests the limits of our Constitution and electoral health, our nationhood itself. After all, if he is convicted, I can see a January 6th scenario playing out again. And what if he wins the nomination and election, which is not out of the realm of possibility? A self pardon?

But, if he is acquitted in the face of overwhelming evidence, what does that say about justice in America and how does that affect our standing, at home and abroad?

So, pardon me if I do not feel like celebrating just yet. My only hope is that at the end of the day, we truly do, as a nation, believe in our creed of life, liberty, and justice for all. Like it was said in No Country For Old Men, if this ain’t the mess, it’ll do ‘til the mess gets here. I am Joseph Flynn and that is my perspective.

Joseph Flynn is the executive director for equity and inclusion in the Division of Academic Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and an associate professor of curriculum and instruction.