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What you need to do now Donald Trump has been impeached
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What you need to do now Donald Trump has been impeached

The vote doesn’t necessarily mean he’s leaving office, so what can we do when politics isn’t working?

Donald Trump has become the third president in US history to be impeached. The news came after a day-long debate in which Democrats and Republicans ferociously went head-to-head.

The House voted 230-197 to approve the first article of impeachment, charging Trump with abuse of power after he requested help from Ukraine to boost his chances of re-election. In July, the president allegedly asked the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky, to uncover damaging information about his rival – and former vice president – Joe Biden.

Trump’s phone call with Zelensky came to light after an anonymous whistleblower wrote a letter expressing “urgent concern” that Trump had sought foreign interference to help him win the 2020 election – something that’s illegal in the US. Following the pair’s conversation, Trump withheld $400 million (£305 million) of military aid from Ukraine, with a senior official later testifying that the president said this was conditional of Biden being investigated.

The president was also charged with obstruction of Congress for his refusal to cooperate with the oversight investigation, which passed 229-198.

Despite being impeached, Trump will likely remain as president as he’s expected to be acquitted in the Republican-controlled Senate next month. This was also the case with Democrats Andrew Johnson in 1868 and Bill Clinton in 1999 – to date there have been three impeachments, but no president has ever been removed from office. 

So, even though the world knows that Trump is not only a misogynistic, racist, transphobic president, but also one that breaks the law, there seems to be no getting rid of him. Here’s a few things you can do to protest his likely acquittal.

DON’T LISTEN TO REPUBLICAN LIES

During yesterday’s lengthy debate, Republicans seemed to have no argument against impeachment, other than the childish complaint that ‘it’s not fair’. Michigan’s former representative Mike Rogers described proceedings as “a sham, a witch hunt, even tantamount to a coup”, while Arizona’s Debbie Lesko said it was “the most unfair, politically-biased, rigged process,” she’d ever seen, adding: “I believe the Democrats are tearing this country apart, they’re tearing families apart.” It appears Lesko has forgotten about Trump’s detention centres which are literally tearing families apart. 

Amid all the Republican lies, it’s important to remember what else Trump has done during his time as president: he suggested that the answer to gun violence is more guns, following last year’s tragic Parkland school shooting that saw students rise up and urge politicians for gun control; he’s repeatedly mocked 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg; he’s emboldened states to pass draconian anti-abortion laws; he’s rolled back recognition and protection of trans people – the list goes on.

In the most desperate attempt by the Republicans to garner sympathy yesterday, Georgia’s congressman Barry Loudermilk compared Trump to… Jesus. He said: “When Jesus was falsely accused of treason, Pontius Pilate gave Jesus the opportunity to face his accusers. During that same trial, Pontius Pilate afforded more rights to Jesus than the Democrats have afforded this president.” OK, hun.

DONATE TO PLANNED PARENTHOOD

Since taking office in 2016, Trump has enabled state representatives to roll back abortion laws across the country. In May this year, 25 white men in Alabama passed a bill that effectively banned abortion in the state, with Democrat Linda Coleman-Madison saying at the time: “Republicans used to say, ‘we want the government out of our life, out of our business, out of or bedrooms’. Now you’re in my womb. I want you out. You don’t control this, you don’t own this.” Later that summer, states including Missouri, Mississippi, and Georgia attempted to pass restrictive abortion laws, which would ban terminations as early as six weeks into pregnancy. Each bill was temporarily blocked by a federal judge. With Trump still in office, women’s bodies are at danger of being increasingly at the mercy of the state – fight this by donating to Planned Parenthood and supporting body autonomy. 

EXERCISE YOUR RIGHT TO PROTEST

Trump famously hates anyone who dares to speak against him – see: ‘fake news’ – so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that he loathes protests. Discussing the demonstrations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh – who was accused of sexual misconduct – the president said: “I don’t know why they don’t take care of a situation like that. I think it’s embarrassing for the country to allow protesters.” So, to piss off Trump and protest the fact he’s been impeached and should therefore no longer be president, take to the streets to express your anger! Fight the man!

LIVE A SUSTAINABLE LIFESTYLE

Last month, Trump notified the United Nations that the US would be withdrawing from the Paris Agreement, which brings 188 nations together to combat the climate crisis. Explaining the reason for pulling out of the accord, Trump said: “As president, I can put no other consideration before the well-being of American citizens. The Paris climate accord is simply the latest example of Washington entering into an agreement that disadvantages the United States to the exclusive benefit of other countries.” What Trump is basically saying is that he refuses to change his ways – or encourage Americans to change their ways – to benefit people in developing countries, who are suffering the detrimental effects of the ecological emergency the most. The ironic thing is that climate change will affect the US, with most states in the south – traditionally red states – facing larger hurricanes, and flooding set to hit Florida, Maryland, and Virginia. Trump needs to look no further than this year’s Midwestern floods to see the damage already being inflicted by the climate crisis.

In order to protest Trump’s dangerous beliefs, and do your bit for the environment, here’s a few things you can do to live a more sustainable life: conserve energy at home when you can, avoid single-use plastic, eat less meat, support Extinction Rebellion and students’ climate strikes, invest in ethical fashion, and utilise public transport.

SUPPORT MIGRANT FAMILIES IN YOUR COMMUNITY

In June last year, thousands of children were separated from their parents at the US southern border and held in prison-like conditions. To this day, families arriving at the border – many fleeing violence and poverty – can expect to be met with inhumane treatment in these so-called detention centres, which have been likened to concentration camps. Some immigrants, including asylum seekers and legal migrants – have been held inside these centres for years or even decades, with Trump announcing a new regulation in August that would allow the government to indefinitely detain migrant children with their parents. Just last week, doctors were arrested at the border when trying to administer life-saving flu shots after three children died in custody.

As the president is likely to remain in office, this abhorrent treatment of other human beings will continue. To oppose it, you can offer support to migrant families who enter your community by befriending them at school, encouraging them to join in with community activities, helping them develop their English, and donating to or volunteering with organisations that support migrants

BE VOCAL IN THE FACE OF DISCRIMINATION

Name anyone who isn’t a straight white, Republican man and Donald Trump will probably hate them. When it comes to LGBTQ+ rights, as well as rolling back trans people’s right to legally self-identify – leading to calls to a trans suicide hotline quadrupling – Trump reversed their healthcare protections, and banned them from serving in the military. The president also urged the Supreme Court to legalise firing people for being gay, and banned the following words from being used in official documents, among others: diversity, foetus, transgender, and vulnerable. 

His discrimination doesn’t end there; Trump’s most famous quote is probably the one that proves his disrespect for women. “I’m automatically attracted to beautiful (women) – I just start kissing them," the president said in a 2005 recording obtained by the Washington Post. “Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything – grab them by the pussy.” Not forgetting his history of racism – despite him pretending to be “the least racist person” – Trump previously called Mexican immigrants “drug dealers, criminals, and rapists”, introduced a ‘travel ban’ that targeted Muslimsdefended white nationalists after the Charlottesville attack, and too many more to list.

With a 2018 study finding a correlation between Trump’s racist rhetoric and a rise in hate crimes in the US, it’s vital for individuals to stand up for each other when they see discrimination in public or online. The power of this is exemplified in 2018 footage showing passengers on a New York subway carriage grouping together to prevent a racist woman from attacking another passenger.