Yesterday, hundreds of Trump supporters stormed and occupied the capitol building in Washington D.C. shortly after Congress began certifying the electoral votes, which Trump had lost. It also happened shortly after Trump had finished giving a speech, also in Washington D.C. just outside the White House, in which he called the election rigged and encouraged his supporters to do something about it.
Congress was later evacuated, and tragically one person was killed during the event, a woman by the name of Ashli Babbitt. She has already become a bit of a martyr among Trump supporters, with one account named @Locksneedfartin tweeting the following:
burn this image of a young woman drowning in her own blood inside the US capitol for opposing the single party government. Next time some democrat or republican has the balls to open their mouth about violence. Remember her. Remember the patriot who painted the capitol in blood.
Actually, she wasn’t killed for “opposing the single party government,” but for storming and occupying a federal building. Also, I find it rather odd that out of everyone the police could have hit out of a large and heavily group, the one person they kill just so happens to be unarmed. Oh yeah, despite the fact that Babbitt was unarmed, the rest of the group wasn’t. Shots could be heard going off all throughout the Congressional building, because the group, again, except for that one person, was heavily armed.
Although the greatest part about this is some clarifications the user had to make afterwards. This is longer than my normal quotes, but I have to show this because it’s amazing:
lots of people quote tweeting and saying “HURR DURR LOOKS LIKE ANTIFA” no its actual americans. Actual patriots. Believe it or not our country was born of riots and rebellion. Q wont save you morons.
there were like 100k trump supporters in the mall today. Antifa nowhere to be found. If you think a bunch of run down homosexual heroin addicts pulled off the storming of the US capitol you are a moron. Full stop.
You stupid fucking morons would take this victory away from patriots who put their literal lives on the line to escape some oppression of being republicans going forward after this. No antifa didnt do it. People are fucking FED UP
“He IS weariong A BAKWRDS HAT THAT IS ANTIFA CODE LANGUAGE1! no you are just a idiot.
There are more of these, but I think you guys get the idea.
The knee-jerk reaction to blame it on Antifa does show another factor in this story, much of the moderate right does not want to be associated with the people behind this. Hence why Will Chamberlain tweeted this:
This is like Charlottesville x 100 in terms of damage to the conservative movement
Although his very next tweet made it clear why he said this:
If you thought the last four years were bad in terms of social media censorship, things are about to get much, much worse
Others on the right, such as Erick Erickson, started doing their normal chest-beating “tough on crime” game they always do. Then when someone on his side got shot, his audience was pissed at him. It seems like, rather “law and order” Republicans like it or not, these people are not being seen as the evil Black Lives Matter was.
This event had a lot going on around it, and gave me quite a bit to think about. As such, I figured I would give you all three insights of mine regarding this recent event.
#1: Trump Supporters Storming The Capitol Vs. Black Lives Matter
As soon as this started, Matt Walsh knew what to do — find some way to look better than the left. Hence why the first thing he did was jump onto Twitter and say the following:
I hate rioting of all types, no matter who is doing it. But lots of people today are trying to erase recent history. The fact is that left wing rioters invaded police stations and burned them to the ground, and were not arrested for doing so. That happened just a few months ago.
All of this nonsense that the police would be coming down harder if these were left wing protesters — were you all unconscious all summer? Left wing protesters burned whole city blocks while the police watched passively. We all saw it.
Now Matt is right that throughout the summer their were various Black Lives Matter events, some of which got quite violent. While it is true that roughly 92% of Black Lives Matter protests were entirely peaceful, that last 8% could get rather dangerous. Mind you, a large amount of that violence was done by undercover police officers — but again, we’ll be as generous to Matt Walsh as humanely possible.
With that said, there are still some issues with this comparison:
- Almost every Black Lives Matter protest which later turned into a riot was decentralized and spontaneous, and most of the evidence points towards the looting being done by opportunists taking advantage of the chaos and not those associated with Black Lives Matter. Meanwhile, while we do not know how pre-planned the storming of the capitol building was, we do know it was done by those who supported Trump, between them shouting “stop the steal” and them being decked out in Trump gear.
- There were many Black Lives Matter events all throughout the summer — again, the vast majority of them peaceful. Meanwhile, the events of yesterday make up every single time a group of Trump supporters have stormed a federal building. Now this is far from the only time Trump supporters have gathered outside D.C., and if someone were to use this to proof all examples of that were violent they would be wrong, but nobody is suggesting that. Of course, this is far from the only example of Trump supporter violence (one remembers them blocking ambulances during anti-mask protests), but once again, I do not believe all Trump supporters are violent for the same reason I do not believe all Black Lives Matter supporters are violent.
But lets talk about the federal reaction to Black Lives Matter, everything from federal agents grabbing protesters and rioters before putting them into unmarked vans to Attorney General Barr trying to declare certain areas “anarchist jurisdictions.” Here’s what Walsh says on this very topic:
Police across the country stood down and watched BLM loot and riot for months. They literally set up their own “sovereign countries” in the middle of American cities.
First off, it wasn’t “in the middle of American cities,” if you’re talking about CHAZ in Seattle than it was in the middle of one city. CHAZ was one extreme example of Antifa and Black Lives Matter and hardly represents the entire bunch. I know that might seem like a small thing, but this kind of hyperbole makes it hard for me to take delicate political commentary seriously.
Second off, if police “stood down,” it’s rather odd they arrested 14,000 people during various protests and riots. It’s odd their are various examples of police using tear gas, pepper spray, and rubber bullets, even in left-wing states like New York. Oh, and speaking of CHAZ, it’s odd Seattle police cleared out the zone on 7/1/2020.
But even then, it should not be ignored that the reason an environment was created for this chaos to occur was fundamentally different in both cases. In one case, you had a group of people fighting to end police brutality and racial injustice. In the other case, you have a group of people fighting to stop a constitutional process that would allow a peaceful transition of power to take place. Best case scenario, the second one occurred because a group of people could not accept that they lost an election.
#2: Republican Politicians Are At Least Somewhat To Blame For This
Now I’m not trying to pass any blame away from the people who did the actions, but with that said, it’s impossible to notice how Republican politicians created an environment where what they did seemed like a rational choice.
Just before the rioting started, Senator Ted Cruz was giving a speech on the Senate floor explaining why he objected to Arizona’s electoral votes getting certified. During the speech, Cruz said the following:
Recent polling shows that 39% of Americans believe the election that just occurred, “was rigged.” You may not agree with that assessment. But it is nonetheless a reality for nearly half the country.
To give you an idea of how small that actually is, 40.6% of people voted for Walter Mondale during the 1984 Presidential Election.
Cruz goes on to say:
[W]hat does it say to the nearly half the country that believes this election was rigged if we vote? Not even to consider the claims of illegality and fraud in this election.
It says something rather simple: They’re wrong. It doesn’t matter how many Americans believe something that is wrong, they are still wrong. According to a 2017 poll, 7% of Americans, slightly more than the percent of Americans who live in Florida, believe chocolate milk comes from brown cows. What does it say to them if we ignore this worldview in making legislation? Once again, that this worldview is wrong and that it should not even be considered when deciding how we’ll be governed.
Cruz never says he thinks the election was rigged, instead just asking for Congress to investigate it. However, this is another move of the goalpost that Republicans have been doing for months. Everything from recounts, to audits, to court cases were supposed to be massive evidence of voter fraud, and not a single piece of evidence could be found.
Cruz refuses to say the claims of voter fraud are wrong, instead appearing as if he’s going down the middle when in truth he’s telling people they might be able to change reality if they try hard enough. The Republican Party refusing to tell its base that their worst assumptions are wrong is one of the biggest factors that caused this. When someone finally does step up and do just that, such as Georgia Secretary Of State Brad Raffensperger, they get death threats and the people who voted for these men now view that as nothing more than disposable trash bags. Even Tucker Carlson, a man many of these people wanted to run for President, got thrown into the wastebasket when he attacked Sidney Powell’s refusal to present evidence of voter fraud on his show. And he’s one of many, even Trump’s own chosen second Mike Pence is now being attacked for refusing to not engage in the constitutional process that has existed for two-and-a-half centuries.
Remember, the same day this happened — hours before it happened in fact, Donald Trump was giving a speech outside the White House claiming the election was rigged — in fact, that was the reason most of the people who took part in the storm were in D.C. in the first place. These men can not handle the idea that Trump lost, because it would mean that something bad has happened to them in Donald Trump’s America. I stand by one of the reasons the COVID-19 pandemic was so hard on them was because they couldn’t handle the idea something this bad was happened with Trump in the Oval Office. That being a big deal and the reason why Donald Trump didn’t get a second term is unbelievable.
Trump and the Republicans could have stopped all of this if they just admitted they lost after the writing had been on the wall. Instead, they chose to play into the delusions of the most hardcore Trump supporters, and I doubt this will be the last we see of them. Even when Donald Trump posted a video on Twitter telling his supporters to behave themselves, he still made it clear that the election was rigged and what they did was justified. Once again, all he has to do is concede and many of these people would give up because they’re only doing this because Trump told them too. I stand by that Trump understands he’s not going to win and instead desires to go out with a bang, and in his insistence to do so, he’s playing with his supporters in a way that is truly immoral.
In truth, even most Trump diehard supporters are not bad people, just as most people in Jonestown are not bad people. These people did not enter the cult of Trump in a vacuum, but because they had actual issues in their lives and they thought Donald Trump could solve them. Trump then responded by telling them he’s the only one that could solve them, and that anything he hasn’t solved is because others are getting in his way. He has played with these people in a way that is truly evil, and what they are doing is simply the only response they can give to their cult leader being challenged.
#3: The United States Needs To Take Active Steps To Counter Monarchist And Fascist Influence If It Does Not Want To See Its Current Government Be Overthrown
In 1919 and 1920, the United States engaged in what has since been known as the Palmer Raids, named after the Attorney General at the time, A. Mitchell Palmer. Palmer had started going after radical anarchists and communists, arresting them and deporting them to Russia, after a group attacked him in 1919.
Something like this may be necessary for monarchists and also authoritarians for at least awhile. Here is how some Trump supporters reacted to the storming on Twitter:
“Conservatives” spent decades preaching 1776 only to disavow it when it finally happened — @LibertyHangout
Did you think 1776 meant sitting in your pajamas reading paper? — @MillerStream
A lot of Conservatives would’ve opposed Jesus Christ flipping the merchant tables and whipping them in the Temple and it shows — @realHirsty
These are the same men who smeared Matthew Dolloff as a terrorist for defending himself. They are now openly comparing their actions to the American Revolution. Far as I’m concerned, these people need to humbled in any way possible, and if Biden fails to do so, he will not be President for very long.
The authoritarians are getting uppity, and if something is not done about them, they will take over. The authoritarian mind is not one that knows when to quit, but it does know to disregard any and all morality in order to reach its goal. The American system cannot co-exist with fascism, and either the fascists go down or the American system goes down — and we know which one the fascists prefer. Either you take reasonable steps to prevent it from happening, or you are not only remaining neutral but actively supporting and agreeing with it.
Rep. Cori Bush already plans to introduce a resolution condemning the Republican politicians behind the narrative that allowed this to happen and possibly going so far as to remove them from Congress. Some Democrats have suggested going one step further and impeaching Trump. In both of these cases, the message is clear, actions such as those we saw yesterday and unacceptable and will not be taken seriously by any politician worth their salt. If you wish to be part of a representative democracy, you just forgo violence or else lose your seat at the table. That should be the message going forward, especially if the reason you’re engaging in violence in the first place is factually incorrect.