Skip to main content
You have permission to edit this article.
OUR VIEW: We are better than we've shown

OUR VIEW: We are better than we've shown

  • 1
Lawmakers vow to investigate police after Capitol breach (copy)

Capitol police officers in riot gear push back demonstrators who try to break a door of the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.

Let’s call it what it is – a mob action, a riot, an act of sedition. A group of protesters inspired and encouraged by the ongoing fiery post-election rhetoric from President Donald Trump, both from his public appearances and his ongoing clusters of tweets, invaded the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday.

For the first time since the British accomplished the feat during the War of 1812, invaders breached the Capitol. While those outside backed the invasion by saying they were marching on “the people’s house,” the protestors inside were showing contempt with destruction, demolition and theft. An individual was shot inside the building, the first shooting in the building since 1958.

This was not making America great again.

We are better than this.

There’s no equivalency argument this time of “there are bad people on both sides.” In the event that the reports of leftist agitators within the crowd are accurate, those violators too should face the stiffest penalty. All involved in destruction of federal property or assault on law enforcement officers should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

That’s what the president tweeted in July, at least.

Trump has done nothing since the election – and little in the months leading up to the vacation, if we’re blunt – destroying his followers’ faith in the election system. His mentality left a electoral victory or loss a win-win. If he won, his followers could be praised for overcoming a stacked system. If he lost, well, he told us “they” weren’t going to let him win. He loaded the explosive, lit the fuse, and has spent more than two months trying to get it to burn faster.

His action led to hundreds of felonious acts by hundreds or thousands who spent the entirety of 2020 decrying and demanding punishment for the very behavior they were exhibiting.

Let’s be clear. No one has a monopoly on the ability to feel outrage. But it’s disappointing that instead of condemnation, too many people want to engage in “whatabout”-ism. No one has a monopoly on that argument either. “They started it” is the weakest argument in life, let alone politics.

Challenges and lawsuits are fine. Election rules laws are complex. That’s why those decisions are argued by lawyers and decided by judges. We leave the jobs of interpreting the law to judges. It’s a process that has worked for well in excess of two centuries. If decisions in 60 court cases aren’t enough to convince a person that the right decision has been made, then we have many more problems we need to address.

The courts are the key to the post-election debates. Dozens of judges have made decisions that have gone against President Trump’s legal team. Judges refused to hear some cases. Judges don’t make those decisions based on convenience or position on the political spectrum. They evaluate the laws, and when deciding against hearing cases, they’ve evaluated lawyers’ filings and been found wanting. If we need to go somewhere other than the justice system, then we have many more problems we need to address. You are entitled to your opinion. You are not entitled to your own facts.

We are better than this.

We’ve learned about many election-related facts, traditions and laws that weren’t covered in class for those of us lucky enough to have taken civics at any level. These laws have been in effect for decades into centuries. They weren’t enacted in 2019 in a grand conspiracy to undermine the election. But when we can’t agree on the facts in front of us, especially when the president of the United States fails to acknowledge anything that puts him in a bad light, let alone disputing apparent facts, then we have many more problems we need to address.

We are better than this.


Catch the latest in Opinion

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

Most Popular

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.


News Alerts

Breaking News