January 6 (Epiphany for Christianity), 2021 will go down in history as a turning point in American democracy. It was a day that will be remembered for self-righteous indignation so extreme that it will echo the mob rule of Italy and Germany of the 1930’s. All semblance of order and reason were replaced by mob mentality that grew only stronger as the fervor of a mock-religious egomania created a false sense of heroism in battering down doors, smashing windows and generally desecrating the halls of democracy in favor of temporary , puffed-up swagger.
One of the most offensive images that day was of some hysterical individuals using a large wooden cross around which some of them prayed for “victory” as though Christ himself must be on the side of the holier-than –thou thugs who were using that symbol of peace, love, and compassion to cover up the ignorant, cruel violence they had already wrought on the grounds and in the building itself. That religious blur made the mob believe that the citadel was being saved in the name of something other than the desecration of democracy it actually was.
Mindless malevolence ensued, of course, leaving in its wake its twisted path of hate, racism, physical assault, death, and the false sense that they were actually doing something heroic and that any form of martyrdom would be just fine on the evening news. Rather, those events will leave an ugly scar as smug and shameful as if they had set fire to The Constitution and Declaration of Independence.
On the world stage, our country, for many, now resembles in too many ways the dictatorships of South America. It is almost as though our most glorious ideals of democratic governance had been discarded in favor of those who believe that loudness, bullying, vulgarity, and disrespect for equality and compassion for one’s fellow citizens must rule the day. They have, of course, been taught by a master of deceit with big gestures that puff up egos by denigrating other citizens and the rest of the world.
“Never be so focused on what you’re looking for that you overlook the thing you actually find.” Ann Pratchett
There are currently too many who are afraid to take a stand against what occurred that day (and subsequent days), shrinking away from truth as though they would be turned to salt by looking directly at it. The president’s denial of any wrong doing does nothing but place a thin shroud over all our past attempts and successes at rendering our nation a “…land of the free…with liberty and justice for all.” JB