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Duane R. Nichols

Holts Summit

Dear Editor:

On Wednesday afternoon, Jan. 6, 2021, a tragic event took place at our Capitol in Washington, D.C. It is, unfortunately, another “day that will live in infamy” in our country’s history. This tragic event though was not perpetrated by an outside aggressor but by our own fellow citizens. Ironically, Jan. 6, the day of the electoral vote count, was also the Christian religious celebration of Epiphany, Christ’s illumination to the world. In contrast, the light of our own country’s democracy was significantly dimmed that day.

Some legislators are pointing to Congress’s reconvening, finishing their work, as a sign we can move on as if nothing happened — or that we can get by this. It is certainly good that Congress did not allow this tragic event to shut it down — and maybe some can get by this. However, at almost 78 years of age, time will not allow me that.

As a federal criminal investigator who participated in the investigation of the bombing of the Oklahoma City Federal Courthouse, I still agonize over the loss of life there at the hands of citizens of our country. This only reopens that. This pulls me back into the realization that our country is being torn apart. The tragedy of this will always be with me in the time left. There is a void, a chasm, in my civic self, that cannot be mended or filled by the hollow words of congressional legislators who are “toadies” of Trump, nor enough time to bring it about through healing. I am still proud of my service in the USMC and as a sworn federal officer, and other public safety jobs after that. Though that seems to be of no value at this point. However, I still can and will express my thoughts:

The president incited a mob. Sen. Hawley and “objectors” further fomented the mob. It was bent on destruction and disruption. Neither the “mob” collectively, nor its individual members, displayed bravery, gallantry or courage. The so-called “assault” by thousands was not pitted against any resistance of consequence but a vastly outnumbered, ill-equipped, contingent of Capitol Police. The Capitol was an easy mark for this mob of thousands of cynics, critics, naysayers, ner-do-wells, scofflaws and mean-spirited minions of a narcissistic autocrat; that resembled the mass casting of a Monty Python movie without humor. What will the RNC offer next?

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