It has been one year since the January 6, 2021, insurrection. I’ve been reading and hearing a lot of things marking the anniversary, but I’m going to take a different track. I’m going to put down some more abstract thoughts and reflections.
Way back, and we’re talking somewhere between 30 and 40 years ago, I watched a difficult transition of power from one administration to the next. This was not in the United States, this was in another country, though I forget now which one. The specific country isn’t important to my point, it’s the imagery and underlying mindset that’s important.
Long story short, there were a couple tanks involved outside the parliament building. One of the windows in the building was broken and burned out, charred around the edges. Hanging out the window was the former leader who lost the election, waving his country’s flag, being defiant and refusing to relinquish power. A stand-off ensued.
My primary thoughts at the time were, “This is what sets the US apart from much of the rest of the world. Even when the transitions of power are contentious we still have a respectable process and we all honor and respect the process and our country overall.” And in random discussions with random people over the years I never had a person disagree with me on that point.
Then along came Donald Trump.
Donald Fucking Trump.
All that is now out the window. One year ago today we had an an insurrection, an attempted coup. One man, Donald Trump, an empty shell of human flesh, with no regard or respect or honor for the country or its institutions, desiring complete power, has ruined our country for a long time to come, if not forever. I don’t think most people understand how close we came to losing it all. Not just our friendships and our families, but our country.
There are a lot of reasons that set the stage for this, which I cover in other posts, but Donald Trump was precisely the immoral power-obsessed con man able to (almost) pull it off. And in such a short time, too. Talk about being in the right place at the right time.
The saddest part is not that it happened, the saddest part is politicians being willing to utterly sacrifice their country for their party and their own power. This hyper-partisanship is not serving us well. Laws mean nothing when the people charged with enforcing them reuse to do so.