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writing for godot


Written by Carol Wolman   
Wednesday, 13 January 2021 12:21

January 6th 2021 was a day of villainy.  Egged on by the President, thousands of his supporters tried violently to overthrow the government.  They invaded Congress, seeking its leaders with intent to “arrest”, “put on trial”, perhaps torture, and even kill some of them.  Their plan was to stop the formal certification of Biden by Congress as the incoming president.  By creating chaos, did they intend to open the door for martial law? a redo of the election?  It’s not clear what the next step would have been.

There’s no doubt about Trump’s complicity.  Not only had he set up the day for months with his cries of election fraud, he actively urged his supporters to come to Washington DC that day “prepared to be wild”.  He stirred them up that morning with a fiery speech, then turned them loose.  In preparation, he fired the top people in the Pentagon whose job it was to deal with this sort of thing, and replaced them with stooges who refused to call in the National Guard, giving the invaders free access to the Capitol building.

They came with gas masks, guns, climbing equipment; everything needed for a full-scale assault on Congress.  They were hunting for Pelosi, Pence, and other leaders. They came close to succeeding, but didn’t, because of the heroes who saved the day.

These people need our acknowledgment and gratitude.  Without their courage, tyranny might have replaced democracy for good.

First, Mike Pence.  He’s been one of the administration villains in many ways, revving up Christian nationalism, working to limit the rights of non- heterosexuals and women.  Mostly he has been excoriated for going along with Trump on everything.

But Mike finally stood up, after the Electoral College met, and said that the people had elected Joe Biden as the next president, thus incurring Trump’s wrath.  Further, he refused to use his honorary role as President pro tem of the Senate to unilaterally overturn the election results on Jan 6th.  The coup d’etat plan depended on his cooperation, so this was a crucial move.

He expected vilification, and retaliation politically, but I doubt he was prepared to be made the main villain of the day, with terrorists seeking him personally to hang him as a “traitor”.  Mike literally put his life on the line to save our democracy.  Reportedly, he went around channels to authorize the National Guard that day.  With their help, law enforcement cleared the Capitol and allowed business to resume.   Thank you, Mike.

Second, the Capitol police.  True, some of them were complicit with the rioters, even opened the gates for them.  But others did everything in their power to stop the attack, getting battered and even killed in the attempt.  The brother of Officer Eugene Goodman tells how this particular black cop made himself bait as the mob chased him up the Capitol steps, in order to lead them away from the Senate chamber.  He thus gave the senators time to escape to safe places.  The District police stood their ground, even when the Federal government refused them backup from the National Guard.

Third, the Capitol security team.  They immediately evacuated chambers of both legislative bodies, and made sure the lawmakers were out of reach of Trump’s coup.  In fact, none of them were discovered or harmed.

Fourth, Nancy Pelosi.  She refused to be cowed by the dreadful events of the day, and called Congress back into session that evening to complete the certification process.  Mitch McConnell went along, reconvening the Senate as well.  Despite the efforts of diehard Trump supporters in both chambers to slow things down, the process was completed by 4 am, and by Jan 7th, Biden was officially president-elect.

Nancy also deserves credit for immediately understanding the danger of a cornered Trump having access to the nuclear codes, and visited the military heads the next day to ensure that he wouldn’t use “the Samson option”, and destroy the world along with the destruction of his plans.

Nancy then called for Trump’s resignation, and asked Pence to invoke the 25th amendment to declare him unfit and remove him from office- an option that Pence has not ruled out.  She then started impeachment proceedings, now completed.  Thank you, Nancy.

The story is not over, not until we have safely gotten through the inauguration.

But as we review the crimes committed on January 6th, let us not forget the heroes, whose courage saved our democracy. your social media marketing partner
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