I am horrified that a President of this United States of America called his followers to have a “wild time” in D.C. on Jan. 6, to demand that the election be reversed to his favor. It makes clear the intent of Trump when he stated the Proud Boys should “stand by.” It’s what his son was broadcasting across the internet, and why Jared and Ivanka are absent and mostly out of sight. This was an authoritarian power grab, a banana republic action that shames us across the entire world.
A short story: I was in the Shoprite, in the vitamin aisle, just a couple of weeks after Trump was elected. A man asked me a question about a vitamin and dosage, as he perused the shelves. I responded with the best of my knowledge to help him. As our conversation trailed off, he suddenly said “I don’t know you and I don’t know where you stand, but I think Trump is going to do amazing things for the country.” I was shocked with this outburst. He was what I would describe as “giddy” as he went on. Tight, he doesn’t know me. I mumbled some words reflecting the fact that I was not a supporter.
But in the end, I told him that I had lived most of my adult life in NYC, and I “knew” DJT the way all New Yorkers knew him. I knew his well-publicized history as a philanderer, a serial cheat of wives, a non-payer of contractors, etc. He was a joke to most locals. My final comment to him was, “I would not be surprised if he started a war to try to cling to the presidency.” He threw his hands up as he backed away, laughing, “Oh, he’d never do that, that’s crazy.” And here we are.
What happened Jan. 6 has been called an attempted coup, an insurrection, sedition and insurgency. They reply it was a free speech thing. So what were the guns, the explosives, iron bars, broken windows and doors all about? Is that “free speech”? And the death of now five people, one of whom was Capitol police. This policeman was hit over the head with a fire extinguisher! This is the party of law and order? This was a flat-out attack on our government, at Trump’s request and for his pleasure.
Adding insult to injury, the Capitol police were told not to carry guns. They also refused offers of aid from the D.C. police, National Guard, and the FBI. There are videos of police opening gates and doors for the insurgents, taking selfie photos with them. There was at least one elected official in the mob. Feeble attempts from the right tried hang the blame on BLM and Antifa, which is just stupid on its face. Then the “whataboutism” starts.
As disturbing as this all is, I still hear people defending, even cheering on, these criminals. One man, a local elected official (whom I will not name) refused to condemn the action, calling it a kerfuffle. Five deaths, multiple injuries, destruction of “The Peoples House” — a kerfuffle!
The venom being spit between parties, between left and right, is being stoked by people like this. The contempt for anyone not in your camp of choice is to be scorned or hated, or attacked. However, this was an attack on America, an attack on our democracy, an attack on the lives of every American, whether you love Trump or not. We are all besieged. Every one of us needs to strongly declare, “Not in my name.”
This cannot stand. Everyone needs to condemn this in no uncertain terms.