Punishing Perfidious Politicians

January 30, 2010
By Lauren Eisenreich BRONZE, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Lauren Eisenreich BRONZE, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

Ever since the days of George Washington, political figures in the United States of America have cheated the American public out of rightful money. From soliciting illegal funds to cheating the system for taxes, the image set forth by many influential political figures does nothing but damage the minds and pockets of American citizens. To ensure proper punishment, the construction of a new system of laws with stricter punishments for crimes committed by political figures should begin immediately to prevent further and similar misdeeds, illegal solicitation of funds, and promote positive role models.

Political figures must receive proper punishment to prevent future misdeeds. An example of this stems from an article in Facts on File entitled “Clinton’s Ethics” which describes President Bill Clinton’s illegal obtainment of money to ensure success in his upcoming election known as Whitewater. Subsequently, a Washington Whispers report by Paul Bedard entitled “The Top 10 Political Scandals of 2009” retells, roughly ten years prior and in similar circumstances, President Richard Nixon’s illegal installation of listening devices to, as with Clinton, ensure success in his upcoming election. With a simple slip through a few loopholes, President Nixon received no punishment except to his reputation and resigned with full presidential benefits. Shall America treat her criminals with such leniency? If President Nixon received due punishment, following politicians such as Bill Clinton may think twice before committing similar crimes.

Political figures not only skirt punishment, but the myriad of dollars flowing into the hands of corrupt political figures could benefit innumerable people and organizations. While many instances of stolen money have surfaced, an article from Facts on File entitled “Supreme Court: Stock Fraud Case Barred from State Court; Other Developments,” refers to Jim Guy Tucker who lied to acquire three million dollars in fraudulent loans straight from innocent taxpayer’s hands. This man, because of his position as a politician, possessed the opportunity to steal money with the potential for other uses such as the construction of a new wing for a hospital or new technology for a school. Instead, one man lives in luxury while the people trusting him suffer. If proper punishments existed and became enforced, the flow of money away from poor, innocent people to rich, cheating politicians would cease.

Even while soliciting illegal funds and often following in the footsteps of past politicians, political figures find themselves placed in a role of enormous decision making power; thus, political figures must set a positive example for those forced to abide by their decisions. Imagine a child sits down with his mother and father watching a presidential speech. The young boy, entranced by the engaging figure on screen, decides “I want to be like him.” Picture this boy growing into an easily influenced youth discovering his idol accused of stealing money. As a tear rolls down the devastated boy’s cheek, the following surfaces: If he can do this, why can’t I? Shall America encourage the people causing these thoughts? Should politicians with such a colossal impact on so many people receive light to no repercussions? They should not. These people are not above the law. Under no circumstance should it become reasonable for a politician to weasel out of a situation which a common citizen cannot.

While some may disagree and call the proposed increased stringency of regulations for political figures preposterous and unfair, these men and women chose to place themselves in such roles and as with all leadership roles, responsibility plays a key role. Because political figures maintain significantly more power than common citizens, they should receive significantly more repercussions. Therefore, more accountability must come to these political figures because, due to their circumstances, the probability of negative impact increases.

No more lack of repercussions; no more empty repentance. Fully enforced punishments at a higher intensity for political figures must head the agenda. The prevention of further misdeeds by proper punishment, a cork in the flow of illegal money to politicians, and promotion along with realization of the potency stemming from standing in the public light must occur. In fact, not only should the enforcement of current laws and punishments occur to a significantly stricter level, but the stakes must rise. Political figures must recognize that their illicit actions will instigate negative consequences. Talk to local legislation, seek a resolution, and suggest a new set of laws. We the people of the United States of America must work together to end corruption in the political system once and for all. Punishment must come to the political figures misleadingly representing the people. Only then can America exist as a truly democratic nation representing its people with the utmost of integrity and righteousness.

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