Trump presses for an investigation of the anonymous op-ed writer

Zoe Hussain, Contributing Writer

What do we consider our main ideals as Americans?  Many would answer liberty, justice, freedom of speech, and other virtuous rights we hold as American citizens.  But what do we do when someone whose job is to protect these ideals isn’t on the same page as our president? 

These days, it is common for government officials to become exhausted from keeping up with the constant political curveballs that Donald Trump’s presidency has thrown.  Governors and up-and-coming political nominees use their opposition to President Trump to attract support and voters.  

In this instance, these elected officials cross the line, but in the case of the anonymous Trump staff author of The New York Times opinion article [include title and date of publication/release if available], this was only a way to exercise their rights and should not be viewed as treason.

        “It’s freedom of speech, that’s a right directly under our Constitution, it applies to all of us,” says sophomore Mia Accetturi.

The New York Times op-ed shines a light on the behind the scenes of President Trump’s presidency.  The writer accuses Trump of having a reckless, petty, and anti-press view on issues.  

The article strictly condemns President Trump’s inability to unite his administration and preserve our democratic institutions.

“The op-ed clearly shows the author’s opposition towards Trump, but not enough to provoke an investigation of treason,” said sophomore Noah Feldman.

To investigate or convict someone of treason, the markers of the crime must be clearly identified in the person’s actions.  The treason clause states that treason is committed when someone wages war against their own country by acting to aid its enemies during wartime.

As blatantly stated in the clause, “inadvertent disloyalty is never punishable as treason, no matter how much damage the United States suffers.”  The treason clause is not in place to punish disloyal citizens, so punishing or merely investigating the op-ed author should not be considered.

        “Freedom of speech applies to all citizens.  If this member of President Trump’s staff is a citizen of the United States, which is likely, they are using their rights to speak up for the people,” said senior Emily Rengifo.

Since the publication of The New York Times op-ed, it has become clear that President Trump’s administration is working to preserve our American ideals.  Freedom, liberty, justice, and our right to freely express our opinions are the main points these government officials strive to defend.  

Beyond the role in serving the president, President Trump’s staff also has the responsibility of America on their hands.  Keeping America’s government running smoothly and maintaining our relationships with foreign countries can hardly count as an act of treason. And since all the author was doing was voicing her concerns in regards to the well being of America, this article is definitely not treason. 

Using the loose definition of treason, one could argue that President Trump is going against the America government by openly speaking out against our amendments. By calling the press “an enemy of the state” and refers to the op-ed as “gutless,” President Trump is openly speaking out against the first amendment.

“The government’s job is to protect innocent citizens and make reasonable judicial decisions,” said sophomore Christine Worms.

President Trump’s feelings toward the press and the op-ed do not warrant governmental intervention. Simply because of the author’s aversion to President Trump, the government cannot put the press on a so-called “arrest on free speech.”

The American ideals that were established in 1776, along with the ones that have preceded, allow United States citizens to freely speak their opinions and practice their morals without interference from the law.

Government officials cannot be exempt from this. This attack on freedom of speech threatens citizens who don’t serve the government.  This “gutless” op-ed has put what we value most into question: politics or the foundation of American ideals?