Democrats and Republicans must unite against insurrection

Published 10:00 am Friday, January 15, 2021

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

In the wake of the failed coup attempt, there is a plan under way to divide Democrats and Republicans, just as there were efforts to pin the whole thing on “Antifa.” But the events of Jan. 6 involved an insurrection to target the police and law enforcement, representatives of both political parties, and the Americans who elected them, replacing our Constitution with authoritarian rule.

There are plenty of members of weirdos with animal skins, and horns, painted faces, faux patriotism, and Confederate flags. These targets of hilarious memes obscure the true threat: deliberate rhetoric targeted specific politicians for death, and the weapons to carry out those executions, including guns, IEDs, pipe bombs, and zip ties. Pipe bombs were destined for Democratic and Republican targets, including both the DNC and RNC.

We don’t know exactly why National Guard members were not approved, why requests for more law enforcement personnel were denied, why frantic calls for aid by the chief were turned down at the highest levels. But we do know that those Capitol Police requests came before the reading of the Electoral College results, and the FBI reported on the danger. Someone powerful wanted this to happen.

We also know that a reduced police force suffered at least one death, perhaps others, with as many as 60 injuries. Some of that, as well as the sacrifice many in the blue made, has been lost in the stories about the officer who posed for a selfie. And certainly, any who aided the insurrection must be investigated and held accountable, for what happened to their fellow officers, as well as to our elected legislative branch.

We also know that those who intended to kidnap and murder Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (also not Antifa) similarly planned deadly attacks on law enforcement. Witnesses describe the mob chanting “traitors” at the police. So much for back the blue.

There were also preliminary reports claiming Republicans were supportive of the insurrection. Allow me to present a more updated poll, from PBS/Marist, showing that only eight percent of Americans expressed “support for Trump supporters breaking into the US Capitol.” Similarly, only 18 percent of Republicans and three percent of Democrats supported this attempt to violently overthrow the U.S. Government, while 80 percent of the GOP and 96% of Democrats oppose it. Those rebelling against the United States government don’t speak for Americans.

As a result, 66% of Americans blame Trump for the violence, and 56% support his impeachment, according to an ABC News/IPSOS poll. Support for impeaching Trump last year, Bill Clinton, or even Richard Nixon in 1974, never rose that high.

There have been strong disagreements between Democrats and Republicans, between police and critics in the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement. And calls for unity in the past have been used as an excuse to avoid any sort of accountability. But we need unity among all of these groups to face a common enemy, not against someone who voted for the GOP in 2020 or their opponents, but that dangerous subsection who lack widespread support (as evidenced by the polls) but make up for it in an amplified online presence and willingness to use intimidation and violence. If we don’t have that bipartisanship, and a truce to the disagreements of 2020 to deal with this threat, we’ll be looking up to this mob and their puppet masters, as our new leaders.