Dear Editor:

At the anniversary of Jan. 6, now is the time for “honest outrage” about the Republican leadership’s refusal to participate in the committee investigating the White House insurgency.

Democrats along with Republicans have pledged their allegiance to the republic. But today it is clear Republicans are giving up their allegiance and are excusing, if not openly supporting, the opinion that the insurrection on the Capitol was nothing more than a harmless protest, with no intention to overthrow our democracy.

Videos of the riot, recorded comments and court decisions make this opinion absurd. If extreme, right-wing lawmakers and political commentators hadn’t gotten to so many Republicans, I think many would want to work together to find a way to get past all the mean-spirited rhetoric, in a calm search for truth.

In my college years, when Reagan was governor of California during the “Free Speech movement” at UC-Berkeley, he was persona non grata on campus. But the protest chants were nothing compared to what’s going on in America today.

At the height of the Vietnam War protest slogans and chants opposing the Johnson administration were bitter, but not vulgar. Not so today. Today on U.S. 50 a conservative extremist flies a flag saying F*** Biden (no asterisks on this flag). This is contemptible.

I have ultraconservative neighbors displaying the American flag upside down (which is a signal of dire distress and extreme danger to life or property). This just signals to me these neighbors are delusional.

This deplorable behavior has even entered the halls of Congress. Since Trump became president decency, diplomacy and simple politeness have declined, not only on the streets but with politicians as well. Republican politicians have openly embraced a chant “Let’s go Brandon” (now a political slogan that’s code for “F*** Joe Biden”).

Here are some examples I’ve gathered and fact checked for accuracy. Rep. Bill Posey gave a speech on the floor of the House of Representatives concluding with “Let’s go Brandon.” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott used the phrase in an Oct. 22 tweet. Republican Rep. Jeff Duncan wore a face mask with the phrase imprinted on it. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said at a rally for Glenn Youngkin, “When you look at the Brandon administration,” and then had to pause as the Republican crowd went wild with approval (they knew what he was signaling). Rep. Lauren Boebert wore a red dress with “Let’s go Brandon” printed on it while meeting with former President Trump.

When you shine a spotlight on just how truly outrageous the rhetoric and actions of some Republican lawmakers have become, your sense of decency demands condemnation of these public servants. We should not allow our democracy to be reduced to the level of a Jerry Springer show.

Yet, Republican leaders say nothing as these party members become undeserving celebrities as they continue glamorizing vulgarity. This should outrage you whether you are a Democrat, independent or (but not likely) a Republican.

 

“Tinker” Paul Silver,Howard