Listening to Mike Pence’s and Mitch McConnell’s words from one year ago, I am overcome with pride in what they said and sadness that they are incapable of living up to those beautiful words.
In fact, reflection on the statements by almost all Republican leaders since January 7th, evoke one of my favorite quotes of all time from Jim Hendrix which I have inverted because I believe it is where we are as a nation: Until the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will not know peace.
The GOP over the past five years has become a tool of those who think that they can use any means because their ends are so important. That is not America. It is not what America is about.
In this experiment of America, the ends do not justify the means.
In this ongoing experiment known as America, the means are in fact far more important than the end.
America’s greatness is set in her ideals, which we should always strive to achieve even when we fail.
America is about a struggling democracy that in 1776 supported enslaving people. It is about a struggling constitution that outlawed sedition unconstitutionally while claiming to support freedom of speech.
America is about just compensation for government taking of property, but living with the reality that much land was taken from Native Americans without just compensation.
America is about living up to the ideal of all men being created equal, and finally after 80+ years, sedition, a brutal civil war, and the Emancipation Proclamation, ending slavery.
America is about learning that “all men” includes “all people.”
America is about giving those being drafted and dying for their nation, the right to vote.
America is about extending the right to vote to people without limitations of a literacy test, a poll tax, owning property, being white, being male, being 21 or having been convicted of a serious crime.
America was and is an experiment. It is a grand experiment that some forward thinkers bestowed upon a small group of people. Those forward-thinking patriots wanted a new way of governing. It was not perfect then, it is not perfect now. But is has proven by far to be the best system of all of those out there.
We are still learning. We are adapting. Some times we move forward. Some times we move backwards. What is certain, is that we always strive for perfection.
We are the inheritors of this experiment. As the descendants, we must decide whether or not it continues as a democracy or if we are to move into the direction of an authoritarian regime.
Make no mistake: what happened last year at the U.S. Capitol was not democratic. It was not based upon the rule of law. It was not based upon a fraudulent election result. It was not based upon Judeo-Christian principles.
The January 6th Insurrection hinged upon one man’s desire to remain president of this great nation against the rules, laws and Constitution of the United States.
It was supported by people who were lied to by the President of the United States and his minions. It was supported by him and his political hacks who care more about the love of power than anything else.
This love of power is every democracy’s Achilles heal. We must fight that with every fiber of our being if this great experiment is to continue.
People we support will win elections. People we support will lose elections. It is the way of a democracy. How we treat our democracy, however, and how we fight for its preservation is what will determine whether it survives.