Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
We inform. You decide.
Sunday, June 16, 2024

CORRECTION: This column has been updated to state the case's plaintiff was Manhattan Defense Attorney Alvin Bragg and state that former President Donald Trump was found guilty on all 34 counts. The columnist originally wrote that New York Attorney General Letitia James was the plaintiff and did not reference the guilty sentencing.

The American people have witnessed multiple worldly events that have affected their personal and professional lives in a short period of time. The ongoing war in Ukraine and the United States' aid to fund those initiatives, the world-stage perception of the Israel-Hamas war starting Oct. 8, 2023, the national divide in political opinion for the upcoming election and most recently (let's save the best for last) former President Donald Trump becoming indicted, criminally charged and found guilty on all 34 counts over his Manhattan hush money trial. 

Not only is this historical precedent, but the combination of all these tragic events is continually shaping the American image, both its reputation and internal relationships, on a national scale. I don't find this event to be celebrated or to be taken positively. This is sad. 

While we ponder our layered options for future American leadership, we must have the mindset of a positive future, not a potential meek one. 

There is an element of justice prevailing over evil individuals who have done horrendous actions in society. Whether you see Trump's trial as an indication of positive good, you will still need to account that the U.S. president, the international representative of the American people, was criminally charged and will be looked at as a criminal under the justice system. International leaders who are against our nation's principles will celebrate. 

The people who elected Donald Trump must internalize this event: whether they voted for an innocent man or a criminal that was yet to be processed. We are all affected, Some are hurt, angry, ashamed and disappointed, all of which will ultimately require the healthiest method in getting past this tragic event and the ones along with it. 

The contents of the trial can be divided into separate topics, the Manhattan hush money case, and the New York state civil fraud case. We will go over the contents by order. The hush money case revolves around accusing former President Trump of falsifying business records to pay adult film actress Stormy Daniels.

The plaintiff, Manhattan Defense Attorney Alvin Bragg, states that Trump used the funds from his 2016 presidential election to pay Daniels in exchange for staying silent about their alleged affairs. The motive for this unlawful action was to mitigate any negative face for his campaign so he could secure his presidential status. This case is unique to the overall recent process since this case was dropped in 2016 but became revitalized in March 2023. 

Trump's attorney Michael Cohen was a key element as testimony for the present case. He admitted that he lied under oath back in 2016 and Trump was guilty of the plaintiff's accusation. A key insight for this case, New York City attorney Michael Cohen, was disbarred and criminally charged in 2019. Both his direct affiliation with past cases of the hush money case and his status as a malpractice attorney present skeptics in his testimonial validity. I see a conflict of interest and he should not have been involved in the new case file of past cases. 

The second case focuses on Trump's business malpractice in the state of New York. The plaintiff accuses Donald Trump of fraud by overstating the values of real estate properties to secure favorable loans and insurance policies. 

Both cases tackle different angles of former President Trump's character. The hush money case identifies Trump's low-quality ethics and morals of not only having adulterous affairs while being married but also highlighting his unethical methods in attempting to achieve his motives through any means possible. The second case ultimately shows Trump's credibility in his previous career as a successful, morally practicing real estate developer. 

These outcomes are important to digest. Previous Trump voters will either succumb to Trump's criminal background and create a newly revised impression by trusting the American legal system, or they will have to deny this conviction and plead his innocence. Ultimately, stating this trial violated due process and will require further plea cases. 

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Alligator delivered to your inbox

There is still concern for Trump voters since there is a possibility his convictions will follow him even if he becomes newly elected president in 2024. Previous presidents have been tried and followed impeachment processes. Most notably, Richard Nixon in 1974 under the Watergate scandal, and Bill Clinton in 1998 over allegations and obstruction of justice related to his extramarital affair with Monica Lewinsky. Although impeachment of past presidents has happened, Trump's case is the only one that has been found guilty followed by an ongoing criminal sentence.  

The political battle between democrats and republicans will not be over Nov. 5. There is suspicion that we will face an extreme political battle within Congress and the Senate if Donald Trump becomes elected as president. 

This is neither good nor reassuring news for voters. Our international influence is at risk, our relationships are subject to compromise and Americans' pride in their country is questioned. Let us pray and grieve for these losses as an entire nation. We are hurting and hope for a better future for the upcoming generations. America is known as the innovator of freedoms for citizens, giving hundreds of years of success and happiness for individuals throughout the generations since its inception.

Embracing our accomplishments and positive contributions to human society is something noteworthy, and can lead people to cross party lines and embrace our national identity, overcoming our political differences. 

Abraham Hilu is a UF political science senior.

Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Independent Florida Alligator has been independent of the university since 1971, your donation today could help #SaveStudentNewsrooms. Please consider giving today.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2024 The Independent Florida Alligator and Campus Communications, Inc.