OPINION | This article contains political commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Yesterday my timeline and messenger were flooded with friends visiting Washington D.C. There were photos and messages of hope, patriotism and love, everything Trump rallies have been for the past four years. Everyone I know had a good ole time!
Elsewhere on the news I see that domestic terrorists are tearing the city apart. It was crazy trying to reconcile the two.
I don’t believe we can rely on the media to give us an honest depiction of the events that unfolded. It could be my own mother in a CNN interview and I’d be suspicious of the actual truth at this point. As it it, I think it will be weeks before we know the entire story.
So far, as evidence goes, I’ve had videos forwarded to me of someone trying to break a window in the Capitol building and getting tackled by a man in Trump gear. I’ve seen tweets of suspected Antifa agitators being recognized in the crowd that stormed the building. I’m not exaggerating when I say I’m going to be on the fence for a LONG time before I finally have a settled opinion on what went really down. But one of the other forms of evidence I’ve seen is an interview with one of the Trump supporters who entered the Capitol.
There are mixed emotions swirling right now. Some people are absolutely mortified by what transpired while others think it’s the most patriotic thing you could do. There’s a crowd who thinks Antifa has been planning this and people on the inside helped them execute. There’s another that thinks this is the first step of Civil War. Whatever you believe, I can’t be the only one who feels like the Republican Party is more divided than ever.
The man from this video may only speak for himself, but it’s clear from the last few months that he represents the thoughts of many.
He explains that he did not attend the rally with plans to storm the Capitol. After hearing the President speak and moving on to the Capitol building, there were already people climbing the scaffolding when he arrived. He says barricades were no longer preventing entry into the area, though they may have been there prior to the crowd coming through. He saw it as a historic moment, spurred by what he saw as a failure of our government institutions to investigate the integrity of the election. He describes the group prayers that occurred and their movement through the building. It’s quite a different story from what I saw on the news, which is one of the reasons I’m still sitting wide-eyed and trying to make sense of it all.
I don’t think this was planned, but I do think it’s been building for a long time. I also don’t think President Trump instigated this in any way, though all of my liberal friends are gloating over social media like he personally lead or encouraged this charge. Of course, we’d know that for ourselves if his accounts hadn’t been blocked just moments after asking everyone to go home and stop the violence.
Whether you believed he had a chance at the election being overturned or not, Trump has always maintained that he saw multiple legal avenues to pursue, and he planned to keep pursing them until he won. Not once did he ask his supporters to take to the streets and fight for him. On the contrary, he has always insisted that he would keep fighting for us. The statement he released yesterday (which I was lucky to see as it was banned for “inciting violence” shortly after being published) told his supporters he understood their frustrations, but that they needed to go home and STOP the violence.
With all of the President’s social media accounts frozen, we need strong party leaders more than ever. Please step up! Now is not the time to worry about who you might offend.
I understand that patriots are disappointed and upset. I understand that this country is founded on the notion that citizens can and should rise up when their government fails them. I could be wrong, but I don’t think this was the time for the actions that were taken.
I fear the people who participated in the storming of the Capital building have done more harm than good in weakening a once united front. I fear they’ve pushed some politicians, who already seem to be weak by nature, away from standing up for their citizens. And I think they should have known that the media would exploit this as the worst attack to occur in decades, despite BLM and Antifa torching cities without regulation all summer long, or Democrats being arrested in the Senate Office Building during the Kavanaugh hearings.
Only time will tell, but after yesterday, I need a nap and several drinks.