Thursday, January 14, 2021

In Trump's Own Words - The Supposed Incitement of an American Insurrection


President Donald Trump has been accused of inciting imminent lawless action in a terrorist attack on the United States Capitol for the purposes of disrupting democracy and perpetrating violence against members of our American Congress. 

In the interest of clarity, the following are quotations from the president's speech - most directly related to inspiring action - preceding the riot in question that prompted a swift impeachment by the House of Representatives: 

 January 6th, 2021

"I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard."

"We're going to walk down to the Capitol, and we're going to cheer on our brave senators and congressmen and women, and we're probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them, because you'll never take back our country with weakness; you have to show strength, and you have to be strong."

Regarding the Vice President:

"Mike Pence is gonna have to come through for us. And if he doesn't, that will be a sad day for our country."

On how Trump supporters should consider their place in history:

"History is going to be made. We're going to see whether or not we have great and courageous leaders or whether or not we have leaders who should be ashamed of themselves."

"The best is yet to come."

Specific plans (in summation) to supposedly violently storm and illegally disrupt our legislature:

"We're going to walk down Pennsylvania Avenue, and we're going to the Capitol, and we're going to try to give... our Republicans - the weak ones, because the strong ones don't need any of our help - we're going to try to give them the kind of pride and boldness that they need to take back our country."

(Then he danced to music by The Village People.) 

Thursday, January 7, 2021

The Capitol Riot and Inhumanity Boiling Over

There have been a number of things over time that I have felt go without saying. 

However, violence and chaos in protest have no place in a civil society. Though perhaps we have not been so civil for some time. For a good part of last year, violence and chaos in protest were normalized by many on social media, on television, and from our leaders. I support my fellow Americans' right to assemble and protest - whether or not I support your cause - but I think we have all seen that when we lose control and resort to destruction, America loses. Indeed lives and livelihoods are lost as well. This cannot continue. 

In two weeks, we will have a new president, but that will not change how we have chosen to divide this country. First, we need to be honest and mindful and have fidelity to what makes us a people - neither color, nor party, nor religion, nor historical ethnicity. We don't have to always agree, but we do have to agree to disagree peacefully. Even if you believe your brother has strayed, you must always consider his humanity. Unfortunately, social media is prone to allowing us to treat one another with disdain, ridicule, and even inhumanity. That is either bleeding over into real human interaction or it is our nature which we have been trained to restrain in polite society. Either way, our country and our world depend on us being better. 

God, bless America.