Finding a better way
The riot last week in Washington is deeply disturbing and should cause everyone to reflect on what brought us to this point.
It is simple to blame Donald Trump for this desecration, but I fear that misses a broader point. We did not get here overnight, and our government has been failing us for longer than the past four years.
The question of our time is: How do we radically improve a broken political system without burning down our country?
The siege of our nation's Capitol is an assault on our Constitution and is inexcusable, but the feeling that government is corrupt, operating only to sustain itself, is a feeling shared by most Americans.
Rather than attacking our democratic process, we must focus our attention to attack the true evil: the two-party system.
George Washington warned us against political factions. Republicans and Democrats have been engaged in a death spiral of political pageantry for my entire lifetime. It has finally spilled into insurrection. The Republican Party is to blame for this new mutiny, but ancient grudges held by Democrats makes all civil hands unclean. The plague of partisanship has fell upon all of our houses, and we will need more than a vaccine to cure it.
The solution starts with us. We must step back and reevaluate our beliefs. We must listen to and work with one another. We must find an alternative solution. If we do not, our American experiment in republican democracy will fail within a generation. We will tear each other into pieces physically, as we are already doing verbally.
I believe there is a better way, but I need your help to make it a reality. Will you stand with me?
Face down fascism
Fascism, in all its forms, is cancerous. It must be dealt with accordingly.
Like cancer, if left unchecked, it will metastasize and kill the organism. No matter the stage, treatment should be swift and aggressive.
What transpired on Jan. 6 was our democracy coughing up blood. We cannot afford to wait for the symptoms to worsen. We are not without hope, though. Our republic is robust. We have the tools to fight this. We need only to use them.
But make no mistake; this will destroy us if we do not act. There is no negotiating with fascism, no soothing saying words that will sate its appetite. It is a moral abyss and if we do not alter course, there may be no going back.
A tiny minority
It just goes to show that out of how many hundreds of thousands of people peacefully demonstrating their patriotism, there would be a few bad eggs infiltrate and try to selfishly ruin a good thing. Those few perpetrators need to be found and held accountable. But honor for the 99.999% who were well behaved and should be recognized in the newspaper and on radio, TV and the internet as good examples of citizenship.
Braun's complicity apparent
I have written Sen. Mike Braun and received no response.
He is quoted in The Journal Gazette (Jan. 7) as tweeting “... what we're seeing at the Capitol is wrong, hurts the cause of election integrity” (head slap to myself).
What on earth did he think he was doing with his baseless, factless, feckless objection to the results of the Electoral College vote? His behavior, in fact, to quote him, “hurts the cause of election integrity.” Braun's behavior in support of the objection to the Electoral College vote was complicity in the seditious, traitorous, terrorist actions of those who stormed the Capitol in an assault on democracy.
If Braun's decision to object to the Electoral College vote was political grandstanding; shame on him. If his behavior was sincere, he has become the essence of moral turpitude.
Other issues brought to fore
I wonder what was going through the minds of Mike Pence, Jim Banks, Todd Young, Mike Braun and other legislators as they lay on the floor and crouched behind chairs and desks or ran for cover in the Capitol. Cameras reflected fear and terror in their faces.
I wonder what our nation's children think as they look at the pictures of those terrorized adults. I wonder what these adults understand about fear as they were tormented by a mob of unruly adults.
Do our nation's children wonder how different the noise of an angry mob is compared to the silence of a lone killer invading the halls of schools – the silence broken only by pop-pop-pop.
Fear is fear is fear! I wonder whether this encounter with fear and terror will cause our national and state legislators as well as Gov. Eric Holcomb to think differently about gun control as well as increasing funding for school safety.
Banks embarrasses district
I've known from the first few times I wrote him, in his first term, when he either didn't respond to my contact or responded to tell me why I was wrong, that Rep. Jim Banks wasn't there for my interests.
All this time, I had thought that our U.S. representative should be representing me... and I discovered that northeast Indiana's representative was there to advance the Republican Party's talking points instead. When I ask for something from him, I expect a response acknowledging my point at the very least – not one that schools me in the dogma of his political party.
Having read The Journal Gazette on Jan. 9, I ran across its quote of a tweet issued by Banks on the morning of the Capitol assault, urging “thousands - maybe millions?” of Trump supporters to send the message that “things can't go back to 'normal' or business as usual.”
It's time for this man to step down from his duties. Words matter – and his support of right-wing lies about the election only encouraged what we saw on Jan. 6. Whatever Banks' interests in Washington, he does not represent me. His words and actions through this crisis have been an embarrassment to his constituents and it's time for him to step down.
Ignorance begets frustration
Luann Fyock's letter of Jan. 10 claims Democrats are filled with hate. Excuse me? Which party was involved with the mob of Jan. 6?
I don't know whether the letter she was responding to included true anger or frustration with the blindness in Republicans, both elected and citizens. That is certainly how I feel, as do my friends and fellow members of my church.
Democrats and former independents, such as myself, have put up with four years of an uncaring (about others) and name-calling, childish White House occupant.
Before you throw stones, make sure to check out your own broken way of thinking.