Politics Magazine

Quid Pro Quo? Call It What It Is - Bribery & Extortion!

Posted on the 12 November 2019 by Jobsanger
Quid Pro Quo? Call It What It Is - Bribery & Extortion! Quid Pro Quo. It literally means "this for that". If you give me this, then I will give you that.
Many people don't know that. It's just some fancy-sounding Latin to them. For many others, it sounds innocuous. It doesn't carry the seriousness of what Trump's actions really were.
Donald Trump broke the law. He tried to pressure the president of Ukraine into announcing that his government was investigating Joe Biden and his son for wrongdoing (even though they had no knowledge of any wrongdoing).
That's not innocuous. It is a criminal act. It's is either Bribery or extortion (or both) -- serious crimes. If an ordinary American did either of those crimes, they would spend time in prison.
Since the Justice Department has decided they won't accuse a sitting president of a crime, the only recourse is to impeach that president if he commits a crime -- like bribery or extortion to help his own political ambitions.
It's time to use plain language -- language the public will understand. The words for the crime Trump committed are BRIBERY and EXTORTION.
The following is a letter to the editor of The New York Times from 33 writers. They understand that words have meaning, and it's time to use the correct words for Trump's criminal behavior. They wrote:
To the Editor: A plea from 33 writers: Please use language that will clarify the issues at hand. Please stop using the Latin phrase “quid pro quo” regarding the impeachment inquiry. Most people don’t understand what it means, and in any case it doesn’t refer only to a crime. Asking for a favor is not a criminal act; we frequently demand things from foreign countries before giving them aid, like asking them to improve their human rights record.  That is not a crime; the crime is President Trump’s demand for something that will benefit him personally. But using this neutral phrase — which means simply “this for that” — as synonymous with criminality is confusing to the public. It makes the case more complicated, more open to question and more difficult to plead. Please use words that refer only to criminal behavior here. Use “bribery” or “extortion” to describe Mr. Trump’s demand to President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, making it very clear that this is a crime. The more we hear words that carry moral imputations, the more we understand the criminal nature of the act. Please also stop using the phrase “dig up dirt.” This slang has unsavory connotations. Instead, please use the more formal, direct and powerful phrase “create false evidence,” or “find incriminating evidence” or the simpler “tell lies about.” Words make a difference. These are parlous times, and we look to public voices for dignity, intelligence and gravitas. Please use precise and forceful language that reveals the struggle in which we now find ourselves. It’s a matter of survival. Roxana Robinson
New York
The writer is former president of the Authors Guild. The letter was signed by 32 other writers:
Karen Bender Rachel Cline Martha Cooley Angela Davis-Gardner Alex Enders Pamela Erens Barbara Fischkin Lynn Goldberg Lisa Gornick Masha Hamilton Jessica Keener Fiona Maazel Celia McGee Edie Meidav Susan Merrell Sue Miller Mary Morris Elizabeth Nunez Maureen Pilkington Elissa Schappell Debra Schupack Christine Schutt Lynne Sharon Schwartz Andrea Scrima Alix Kates Shulman Jane Smiley Lee Smith Terese Svoboda Amanda Vaill Katharine Weber Paula Whyman

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