Photos and videos from the US Capitol building on January 6 show a scene that could only be described as chaotic. Trump supporters, upset at the election results and begging to talk to their elected representatives, swarmed the steps of the Capitol, faced by hundreds of Capitol Police officers. After facing verbal abuse, punches and beatings, and copious amounts of pepper spray from the cops, the Trump supporters finally broke through the police cordon and made their way into the Capitol. The ensuing reaction from the ruling class has underscored the hypocrisy of both Democrats and Republicans, and the death of protester Ashli Babbitt could result in this incident going down in history as the modern-day equivalent of the Boston Massacre.
Watching video of the events at the Capitol, you can’t help but notice that police were the ones instigating much of the violence, at times throwing punches and spraying pepper spray for no reason. Facing a crowd of people upset at what they see as a stolen election, you have to wonder why the police chose to be so antagonistic. Part of that is the mindset of modern police, who don’t know how to de-escalate a situation. They are taught to “maintain control” at all costs, which in their training means continually escalating the use of force. But when faced with a large crowd that outnumbered them, that tactic was doomed to failure from the outset. Even Ray Charles could have seen that it was bound to result in a storming of the Capitol.
The real tragedy was the death of Ashli Babbit, a 14-year Air Force veteran who was shot and killed by a policeman [WARNING: Link contains graphic footage] as she attempted to enter the Speaker’s Lobby. The shooter has not yet been identified and, given the fact that Babbit was among a group of both protesters and police, the shooting was both dangerous and unjustified. Eyewitnesses to the shooting mention the fact that Babbit “didn’t have a weapon and she was not violent.” If breaking into the Capitol to exercise your right to petition the government for a redress of grievances is a capital offense, then our republic is dead and it’s time for a new Declaration of Independence.
Speaking of eyewitnesses, it’s interesting to note that the eyewitness quoted above is described as a “left-wing activist.” The role of leftist provocateurs in the storming of the Capitol still needs to be determined, but there’s no denying that they were among the vanguard. One BLM activist from Utah has already been identified online, and photos on social media seem to indicate that police arrested him in DC. While the majority of people inside were likely Trump supporters, nothing is impossible, and it’s more than probable that a number of leftist agitators and professional s***-stirrers goaded the crowd and took advantage of the situation once inside.
The reaction from the media and the elites has been predictable, albeit laughable. The protesters have been described as rioters, insurrectionists, and terrorists. The storming of the Capitol has been described as violent, an insurrection, and an attempted coup. Those descriptions couldn’t be any further from the truth.
An insurrection is a violent uprising against government, and a coup is an attempt to wrest control of power away from government. The events of January 6 were nothing of the sort. Protesters weren’t attacking Congress, they were calling on their Congressmen to exercise their power. Nor did they try to take control of the government, they were urging their elected officials to act under their Constitutional authority. But we live in bizarro world now, in which up is down, war is peace, men can be women, and truth doesn’t matter.
What is really disappointing is how many Republicans have locked ranks with the elite and defended their privilege. Vice President Pence tweeted his support for the Capitol Police, even posting a photo of him giving the Chief of the Capitol Police an elbow bump.
Senate Majority Leader (for two more weeks) Mitch McConnell stated that the event was a “failed insurrection” and that protesters “tried to disrupt our democracy.” What a bunch of hogwash.
Many others on the right have expressed similar sentiments. After all, it’s perfectly okay for cities in Middle America to face riots and violence from Antifa, but as soon as Washington gets even a whiff of that, the unwashed masses need to be put back in their place.
The hypocrisy from the left is just as you would expect. Remember how Democrats were defending Antifa rioting last year?
Just one month ago, AOC posted on Twitter that the “whole point of protesting is to make [people] uncomfortable. … To folks who complain protest demands make others uncomfortable… that’s the point.” Now AOC’s staffers are trying to get social media firms to stop users from retweeting that old tweet.
And remember when Maxine Waters said “If you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd and you push back on them and you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.”? Now that the shoe is on the other foot, she doesn’t seem to like it so much. But who expected politicians not to be hypocrites about this?
Now we await the backlash from the powers that be. Right now they’re falling all over themselves blaming Trump, confident that their allies in the mainstream media will cover for them. They fail to acknowledge their own role in this mess, by failing to address and take seriously the allegations of electoral fraud that have millions of Americans up in arms. Their lack of self-awareness could end up exacerbating this situation and resulting in more violence.
When British troops killed Crispus Attucks and four other innocent people in Boston in 1770, the British at least had the good sense to bring the troops up for trial. It’s highly doubtful that Ashli Babbit’s killer will face any sort of charges. She could end up becoming the 21st century’s version of Crispus Attucks, who has gone down in history as the first victim of British troops in the runup to the American Revolution.
If our country descends into revolution in the next few years, the events of January 6 at the Capitol will likely be seen by historians as the tipping point that pushed the country inexorably toward that fate. The events at the Capitol have highlighted for much of us that the mindset of the elite political class that holds everyday Americans in contempt is still alive and well. It was a reaction to that mindset that swept President Trump into power, and the contempt that Trump’s opponents continue to feel for Americans remaining on display will only further energize Trump supporters to bring about major political changes. If they are denied the opportunity to do that at the ballot box, no one should be surprised when they decide to resort to other means instead.