In 1770, Founding Father and a future President of the US John Adams stood in a Boston courtroom, and for a brief period in time he was one of the most despised men in New England, if not America. And what was Adams’ transgression, the contravention that would bring his neighbors and fellow patriots to hold him in contempt? A belief in a rule of law, even in the defense of those who would stand in the way of liberty. I cannot help but find comparisons between the place that Adams’ found himself in 240 years ago, and the place that US Special Counsel Robert Mueller finds himself today.
Until his appointment as special counsel to investigate possible collusion between Russian operatives and the Trump Presidential Campaign, it is fair to say that Mueller’s name recognition was low with the general American population. Mueller’s background is that of a humble hero. Mueller is a decorated US Marine (Vietnam), a former US Attorney (appointed by President Regan), former US Asst. Attorney General for the Criminal Division (under President Gorge H. Bush and President Clinton), US Deputy Attorney General (President George W. Bush), and only the sixth man to hold the position of Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (President GW Bush and President Obama). With his recent appointment as special counsel he faces one of his greatest challenges; to conduct a fair investigation in the era of hyper-partisanship. Mueller’s pedigree suggested that he is up for the task.
The basic narrative of both cases makes them different in so many ways, except for at least one, the call to duty. Throughout our history as a nation, even in the face of an unpopular mission, men and women have put aside their own self-interest, choosing instead to serve their nation. I know, unthinkable, service over selfishness. Go figure.
Men like Mueller know sacrifice, standing in a foreign land, fighting an unpopular war, charged with the safety of the young Marines placed in his command. Mueller understands the weight of responsibility, sacrifice, and honor. Mueller’s history is such that I am willing to give him an opportunity to conclude the unpopular task this country asked him to do. We would all be wise to remember that Mueller did not seek this task, our country asked him once again to answer the call to service. He could have walked away, and no one would have faulted him, but we should all be thankful he didn’t.
I disagreed in the manner in which the investigation was conceived. I have long stated the special counsels are most likely un-Constitutional, and by design are too broad in their scope. But I also understand that once they are underway, we cannot expect them to ignore any impropriety they may uncover, even those not connected to the original focus of the investigation. As a former law enforcement officer, I can tell you that there have been times when my investigation was heading in one direction, but facts opened other avenues that required my attention.
Sadly, we are under no obligation to believe the facts, and our political predications will most likely drive many of us to the truths we seek. Maybe Mueller will make mistakes, but most likely the investigation will not show any real collusion between President Trump and agents of the Russian Government. Maybe we will finally find out the fate of Jimmy Hoffa and Amelia Earhart? Anything is possible when it involves a special counsel investigation anywhere near politics in the United States. But one thing I know for certain, Robert Mueller did what we asked of him, and he will not do anything to discredit himself, the American justice system, and the integrity of America.
I can’t, nor should any of you stand by and watch another person fall victim, for all the wrong reasons, to the perverted blood sport we call politics in America. I can tolerate the bickering on the merits of the investigation, the concern that some in the FBI have been corrupted by partisan politics. I have serious concerns regarding the FISA court, as should every America (not only related to this case, but beyond). As a country we should all be distressed by the clear prejudicial actions of disgraced FBI Agent Peter Strzok (and most likely illegal). Strzok is a disgrace to his badge, and his actions have brought shame to the law enforcement community.
What did Adams’ gain by going against the Sons of Liberty, seemly siding with “The Crown.” Nothing but justice. Justice should know no side, whether we agree with the investigation and regardless of our political attachments. Robert Mueller had a choice. When asked once again to serve his country, he could have said no, because God knows, he has done more than his fair share for his country. Mueller has nothing to gain regardless of the outcome, and everything to lose.
While others hid from their responsibilities, or sought deferment after deferment, the very first time Mueller was asked to serve his country, he did not hesitate. After waiting a year so a knee injury could heal, Mueller volunteered to serve as an officer in the United States Marines. While serving in Vietnam as a rifle platoon leader he earned the Bronze Star with “V” distinction for combat valor for actions during an ambush in which he witnessed almost half of his platoon become casualties. Additionally, in a separate incident Mueller was wounded by enemy gunfire, yet after he recovered from the wound returned to lead his platoon. Married to the same person since 1966, inductee into the Ranger Hall of Fame, and recipient of the Thayer Award for public service from the United States Military Academy. I am just going to go out on a limb and say with certainty that Mueller has earned our trust.
We should hold dear to a healthy degree of skepticism, so long as that skepticism is accompanied by integrity. However, when we choose to attack the integrity of an individual who has served his country with distinction and honor, we are the swamp creatures we claim to detest. When we pursue the path of personal destruction against an honest-to-goodness American hero, Robert Mueller, we not only unfairly soil his good name, but we turn our back on everything we should stand for as Americans.