Impeachment. Im-peach-ment. Sounds like a term of endearment or romantic interest, doesn’t it? Odd word for a nasty, eye-gouging, ear-biting political fight to try to remove a president.
Impeachment sounds more apt to be used in a courtship, as in, “Her feelings for the prince were an utter impeachment” or “His ardor for their pending impeachment had not cooled.”
Hotel clerk • “I see that you’ve recently married. Congratulations. May we offer you our Impeachment Suite?”
Impeachment has nothing to do with peaches. Or love. It comes to us from the Old French word “empechement,” meaning a difficulty or a hindrance. From there, it evolved into “empeechier,” meaning a process to remove a public official for malfeasance.
I believe that “malfeasance” itself is derived from an early French word for “gastric distress,” or to expel — well, never mind.
Confession: I looked up most of that etymology. I’m not smart enough to have already known it.
Were I a mature and conscientious American voter, I would be deeply concerned about the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. I would hang on ever babble made by a politician regarding his performance in office.
Since I’m not (a mature voter) I don’t. As soon as I hear the words “impeachment, Trump, Pelosi, Biden” or even “and today on Capitol Hill,” I switch the channel or leave the room.
Like many — and maybe most — Americans, I find the whole impeachment thing about as enjoyable and constructive as a pig fight. When it comes to politics, I care about four issues:
• Crime — The forced deportation of repeat violent offenders and the immediate release of anyone in jail just for weed.
• Taxes — Reining them in, starting with paying elected officials no more than minimum wage.
• Terrorism — Turning the right ones into tomato paste without the collateral deaths of children.
• Education — Student loan forgiveness for everyone who completes a trade school program or a nursing degree.
I don’t care about a political process that more resembles a frat party gone wrong. Were it up to me — and you should probably fall to your knees and thank God it’s not — all the elected officials on Capitol Hill would be on their way home on flatbed trailers stark naked and in muzzles.
The U.S. government would be turned over to Senate and House pages. Yes, they’re young. But they’ve been around the process long enough to know what to do.
For experience, I would assign each of them a counselor selected at random from the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
President? Got that covered. It’s Elaine J. Haversham, 15, from Buffalo Tongue, Neb. I have no idea who she is. I just chose her at random. She can bring her BFF for vice president.
This sounds crazy, I know. But before you dismiss it out of hand, please take a moment and consider just how ridiculous and stupid things have become. Tell me it doesn’t sound like I’m running the government already.
Robert Kirby is The Salt Lake Tribune’s humor columnist. Follow Kirby on Facebook.