Insurrection. Impeachment. Inauguration. High Drama In America With A Few Comic Moments In Between.

WOW! From January 6 to January 20, from an ugly government coup to a swift trial of treason followed by a graceful commencement ceremony — Americans may be at war with each other but they’re still the best bloody multi-taskers in the world! It was like the political version of the Gordie Howe hat trick — a goal, an assist and a fight — all in one game!
As that rabid mob laid (bodily) waste to the halls of America’s temple of government in Washington and smashed their way into the empty Senate chamber, there was that moment of surprise at their own success. Staring at the grandeur of an empty Senate chamber, the first ones in were stunned into a surreal silence. Until one of the Capitol crashers said: “Well, now that we’re here, we might as well put together a government.” It was a deadpan line delivered like a late night comic.
Like: “Okay, who wants to be president? Come on, how hard can that be? Okay, first we’ll kill Pelosi and hang Pence and then we’ll talk about who gets to ride shotgun on Air Force One.”
Addressing his army of brain-washed supporters about the ‘stolen election’ and referring to the Democrats, President Trump said: “They’re not taking the White House. We’re going to fight like hell.”
And there it was — no dog whistle or gaslighting or perfect phone call — a dozen words that became the war cry that saw him impeached almost immediately. Then instead of joining his mob of marchers as he had promised, he went back to his office and watched the carnage on TV. (I really hoped that at the height of the violence, Pence would send Ted Cruz out onto the Capitol steps to try and calm things down.)
Benedict Arnold, the most famous treasonist in American history did in fact fight along-side the enemy of invading British troops while Judas Iscariot at least pocketed thirty silver coins for selling out Christ. But Trump… he watched his horrible handiwork unfold on the big screen while enjoying a burger with extra fries.
Switching gears faster than a trucker in an ice storm, America went from national mayhem to constitutional justice to… this gorgeous and solemn scene of the 400 lights illuminating the reflecting pool at the Lincoln Memorial commemorating the 400,000 Americans who have died so far from the coronavirus pandemic.
I can only imagine Trump watched that on TV too and yelled “Corona panda what!?! I bet Rudy knew all about this and the bastard didn’t tell me!”
Some rioters displayed badges and name tags, a gold-medal swimmer wore his Olympic jacket and many of them took selfies of themselves then posted them online to which I say: “If you’re going to be a vicious mob, then damn it, act like one!” Seriously, can you imagine if these people were smart or even halfway organized? No, do not imagine that. Think of this as a peaceful respite, the calm before the next storm known as the ‘midterm elections’ of 2022.
A funny line that speaks volumes of historical truth: “Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, America had to stage a coup at home this year.” As much as Canadians sympathize with those Americans who voted for sanity and are now fighting to hold on to their democracy, it’s important to remember that previous administrations used the CIA to orchestrate more than 80 ‘regime changes’ all over the world that looked… just like the one we watched on TV.
I really think Jen Psaki, this breath-of-fresh-air White House Press Secretary, missed a golden opportunity to foretell the humour and humility of the Biden administration while distancing herself from the ‘Liars List’ of Spicer, Sanders and McEnany. (I noticed metal detectors have now been installed at the Capitol. Late, but not as late as lie detectors installed in the White House briefing room!)
Exactly four years removed from Trump’s crowd size exaggeration and with clips of the empty and barbed-wire confines of Washington behind her, Psaki should have ended her first press conference with: “This was the smallest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period! Both in person and around the globe! Double period!”
Of course a few days after the calm and peaceful transition of power at the White House, two Republicans, Andy Harris of Maryland and Lauren Boebert from… you can’t make this stuff up… Rifle, Colorado tried to slip past the new metal detectors on the grounds of the Capitol and were caught carrying handguns. It’s too soon to know if far-right Republicans plan to eliminate the middleman, that is, the mob, but if they start quoting John Wayne instead of Abraham Lincoln the Democrats will have to resort to wearing bulletproof vests.
In Lansing, the locked-down, boarded-up capital of Michigan, two protesters from opposite political poles starred each other down. One, a member of a Michigan militia, wore a camouflage uniform with an assault rifle slung over his shoulder. Opposite him stood a little guy wearing a T-shirt that read “Let’s settle this like adults”… over images of paper, rock and scissors. The meek might yet inherit the earth but there will be casualties along the way.
There is no shortage of beautifully-crafted words of healing that serve to temporarily paper over the ugliness within every American domestic eruption. From the poem of 22-year-old poetic phenom Amanda Gorman: “The new dawn blooms as we free it. For there is always light. If only we’re brave enough to see it. If only we’re brave enough to be it.”
To the brilliant black playwright Langston Hughes who loved a country that did not love him back: “O, let America be America again. The land that never has been yet. And yet must be — the land where everyman is free.”
America — a bubbling lab experiment in democracy, a messy nation-building work in progress.
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