I don’t know if it’s necessary to de-bunk the absurd claim by Kamala Harris and others that the January 6, 2021 riot was an existential threat to the nation and on par in historical significance to the bombing of the Twin Towers and the attack on Pearl Harbor, much less the claim by the Huffington Post’s White House correspondent that it was “1000 times worse.” Regarding that astounding assertion, I asked, “How can anyone justify or explain that, except as uncontrolled Trump Derangement or deliberate false narrative building?”
But Steve-O-in-NJ decided to explain in detail just how bats this fake narrative is, and I deem it a worthy Comment of the Day for several reasons. First, there may be some readers here who believe the nonsense. Second, I am habitually shocked at just what garbage even intelligent people will accept as true, so I am inclined not to assume that even this self-evident crap won’t pollute some minds. Third, I’m feeling sick today, and should probably be in bed, so I was hoping for a COTD-worthy piece. Fourth, almost no one is commenting today, even fewer than usual on a Saturday, so maybe Steve’s passion will draw fire where I have failed.
Finally, Steve-O was unfairly attacked over the past few days by a nasty bridge-level troll here unearthed by the “echo chamber” survey, and I allowed the jerk to run amuck far too long before banning him/it and sending his worthless comments to Spam Hell.
So here is Steve-O’s Comment of the Day on the post, “Ethics Reflections, 1/7/22: Two-Day Jan. 6 Hangover Edition.” Abbondanza!
9/11 – the Twin Towers destroyed, the Pentagon badly damaged, 2,977 people killed, including 343 firemen, 72 law enforcement officers, 8 medics, 55 members of the military, 8 children. Victims and first responders alike are still dying of related illnesses. Result: the War on Terror.
Pearl Harbor – 188 military aircraft destroyed on the ground or shot down, five battleships sunk or disabled, three others damaged, 8 other vessels damaged. 2,403 people killed, including 2,008 sailors (1,177 of those on the USS Arizona), 218 soldiers and airmen, 109 marines, and 9 Honolulu firemen who came in to help. Result: American entrance into WW2.
Fort Sumter, April 1861 – no one was killed, but the result was the opening of the Civil War, 600,000, Americans all, killed, and a wound opened which apparently still hasn’t healed, although a lot of us thought it had.
Assault on Washington, August 1814 – unknown number killed, the destruction of much of the public buildings, including the gutting of the White House and severe damage to the Capitol.
Assault on Hampden, ME, September 1814 – only one killed and a few others wounded, two American towns burned to the ground by UK Captain Robert Barrie, who said that he’d have been within his rights to massacre the inhabitants.
Manhattan Draft Riots, July, 1863 – 120 killed, riots crushed.
Bonus Army, July, 1932 – 2, possibly more killed, demonstration dispersed.
Occupy Movement, 2011 – 32 killed, achieved nothing.
Kent State – 4 killed.
George Floyd Riots – 58 people dead (I think), billions in property damage.
Compare this to one rioter shot dead by a police officer and no major damage done last year.
Now we can also talk about occupations – the 2011 attempted takeover of the Wisconsin State Capitol in opposition to a budget repair bill that Governor Scott Walker pushed, which was crushed with no concessions, the Occupy movement, which accomplished nothing except maybe getting a lot of millennials to move out of their parents’ basements (hopefully mom and dad immediately changed the locks), and oh yes, the assaults on both the Senate and the Supreme Court during the Kavanaugh hearings. Funny…each of those times the media sided with the protestors, not the authorities. After all, those times it was all oppression of their good buddies in the Democratic Party and the professional protest community getting stepped on. This time it was a bunch of brainless, fat, toothless (ever notice how conservatives are always supposed to have bad teeth?) yahoos attacking the Capitol and putting their pals in the Squad in danger. It never once struck them as ironic that this time they were strongly against the same behavior their pink pussy hat wearing friends had committed not even four years earlier.
That’s because context and perspective are often the enemies of polarization, divisiveness, certitude, and outrage. The burning of Washington looks pretty bad on its own, but if you add in the fact that American militia had previously burned the public buildings in York (now Toronto) unnecessarily, then maybe it still looks bad, but a bit more understandable. The Kent State shootings look pretty bad if that’s all you look at, but when you put that event in the context of being preceded by five days of violent protest, vandalism, and radical strong arming of ordinary people (i.e. telling business owners put up an anti-war sign or we’ll burn your business), and assaults on first responders, plus a refusal to disperse even when tear gas was used, it’s hard not to at least entertain the thought, “what the hell else were they supposed to do?” Do we even need to talk about how most discussions of the death of George Floyd leave out the facts that he was resisting arrest, high as a kite, and already in bad shape? Never mind that he was a lifelong petty criminal. He doesn’t look like an innocent martyr just going about his business when you figure all that in.
Let’s talk perspective here. This nation has realistically been in existential danger maybe four times. The first time was when it was fighting for its existence and most vulnerable. Any nation is vulnerable in its infancy. The second time was when it almost came apart over slavery and (to a lesser degree) state’s rights (which you might also see differently if you look at the Nullification Crisis and its history). The third time was possibly WW2, and the 4th was possibly when the Soviets acquired the bomb. I wonder about the last two. The fact is that the Japanese might have taken the American territories in the Pacific, but they were never going to be able to conquer the lower 48, they simply did not have the numbers. The fact is also that the Nazis weren’t going to come here, they had neither the numbers nor the transport capability. If they couldn’t land an army in the UK or take Moscow, do you think they were seriously coming here? The fact is also that the Soviets might have ranted, but they weren’t idiots. They knew that if they tried to destroy the US they were going to get destroyed too, and a conquest means nothing if you aren’t there to enjoy it.
Given all of this, given that 11 states in active rebellion couldn’t destroy this nation, do you seriously think that 300 or so fringe righties were going to overthrow the Federal government? Use your head. The Capitol covers 4 acres, not all of it defensible, it’s a government building, not a fort. You think 300 people are going to be enough to garrison that? The House alone is 535 people and they all fit into one chamber. Speaking of garrisoning, a garrison is only as safe as its supply of food and water, and it doesn’t look like any of these clowns brought any. Once the water and electricity were shut off, and they would be, they would be nowhere. A garrison also needs one other thing: arms. As far as I know one handgun, chemical irritants and a few melee type weapons were seized. Some other weapons were taken at other events, but not at the Capitol. Do you seriously think this rabble could hold that building against a police force, just the Capitol Police, who outnumbered them six to one? That’s before we figure in the DC Metro Police and the myriad Department of Justice agencies, never mind the National Guard. They would have lasted a few days, a week tops, before a force ten times their number, complete with battle armor and assault rifles, would have cleared them out. The business of government was going to go forward, at most it would be delayed a few days. Even if they continued to hold the building, do you think they would have seriously been able to take even the first step toward governing? Don’t be ridiculous.
The Democratic Party is trying to sell the American people a bill of goods, the media is running the commercials, and this is one of their main selling points. The same party that at best looked the other way and at worst gave active support as Antifa and Black Lives Matter trashed the downtown of almost every major city in this country and was poised to move on to the residential areas and suburbs, wants you to believe that this one very small group that did this one not-very-successful thing is a much bigger threat than those other groups that they used as a militia. The same party that sent those same militias and others against the same building in an attempt to stop a SCOTUS justice from being confirmed, wants you to think this was the only assault on this building that mattered. The same party that spent five damn years trying to undermine a duly elected president (they started before he was even elected) wants you to forget that it did all that, and focus only on this one act. The same party that tried to defund and, in some cases, do away with the police, before finding out the hard way that didn’t work, now wants to ride the graves of officers who did not even die in this riot to rally your unflinching support. If you dare say you don’t see it that way, or that you have some questions, they want to call you an insurrectionist or a supporter and throw you in jail.
What is more, they are pushing this while they suck at everything else. This is a magician’s trick, to guide your eyes elsewhere while he moves the trap or triggers the lock that will make you think he can work magic, when no one can. They want you not to notice that you are getting banged at the pump and $4.00/gallon gas is probably just the other side of Memorial Day. They want you to forget that your grocery bill is up by 20% or more, paying for the same stuff in the same amounts. They want you to brush by the disaster that was the withdrawal from Afghanistan. They want to trick you into believing that this administration is a job machine, when in reality most jobs “created” are people going back to those they lost due to the pandemic and it’s unfair to compare jobs per month on 8 months against 4 or 8 years. Oh, and speaking of the pandemic, they’d have you believe that they’ve just about got it licked, that normal life is just around the corner, but every time it’s in view, somehow these new variants just keep popping up, and blame those new variants on those who aren’t living in fear, wearing masks every time they leave the house and doing everything by zoom. They also want you to believe that the greatest danger to this country isn’t Islamic terror resurging in Afghanistan, it isn’t China looking hungrily at Taiwan and other nations it knows Biden won’t defend, and it isn’t the gas station with nukes run by a tyrant that is Russia. Nope, it’s none of those things. It’s your own neighbor. The neighbor who has too much vanilla and not enough chocolate. The neighbor who dares to say the 2020 election had problems, even if he stops short of saying Trump won. The neighbor who belongs to the wrong church, or any house of worship except a black church or a mosque. The neighbor you think might have voted the wrong way last time. The neighbor who you think owns a gun, even though you’ve never seen him misuse it. The neighbor who has the blue stripe in his window. The neighbor who WASN’T out last summer protesting. These neighbors are all guilty of wrongthink, and THAT’S the real enemy.
You still willing to buy all this?