Opinion: I Believe That History Will Regard January 6th as an Insurrection

Walter Rhein

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Today it is still controversial to discuss the January 6th insurrection. The committee hearings are ongoing, and many Americans refuse to watch the presentation of evidence.

Many Americans deny that the events of January 6th represent a violent attack on our government and our very way of life.

Many Americans also refuse to read the results of investigations regarding the summer riots of 2020. Instead, they hold firm to their assumptions of what happened which align with their prejudices.

Why are so many Americans so sure that they are right that they refuse to acknowledge the existence of evidence which contradicts their position?

Part of the answer is that powerful and influential people are telling people not to do their own research.

Republican Senator Marco Rubio of Florida lambasted the House committee examining the January 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol, calling it a "partisan scam" that is harassing people as part of its probe—Melissa Quinn

In the United States, we are told to respect law enforcement agents. When a police officer tells you to do something, you have to obey. You don’t get to disregard police officers just because they are accusing you of a crime.

You have a right to a trial. A trial is an opportunity to prove that you are innocent. In order to have a civilized community, we must show law enforcement agents the appropriate amount of respect.

We can’t refuse to help by claiming we’re being harassed. If a crime has been committed, we must hold those responsible accountable.

It doesn’t matter if the guilty part is somebody we like or respect. If the evidence shows that person is guilty of a crime, we have to change our opinions on that person. It might be painful. It might feel like a betrayal. But, recognizing the truth about people is our only way forward.

It is always dangerous to refuse to listen to fact based assessments of a situation. It is dangerous when people condition themselves to become hostile at the presentation of facts. Many Americans refuse to recognize the validity of sworn testimony.

We have to remember that the January 6th insurrection happened less than two years ago. This event is still new in our collective consciousness. The hostility that people show now will slowly fade over time.

Eventually, the American public will have a more rational, fact-based understanding of what happened on that day.

I believe that future history books with teach that the January 6th insurrection represented one of the darkest periods of our history. I believe that school children will be taught that our democracy was almost lost.

As for today, it’s very important that every American maintains a rational perspective on these events.

The facts gathered by the January 6th committee have only recently been presented to the public. It is going to take time for the people to process these facts.

Everyone in the United States has a right to their own opinion. However, people do not have a right to their own facts. The facts cannot be changed, and it is up to us to come to terms with them.

We all know that we’re subjected to many distortions of the truth on a daily basis. Part of being an adult is learning how to process the frustration you feel when you aren’t treated fairly.

A riot on the Capitol where property was destroyed and police officers were assaulted is not an example of fair treatment. It’s important that the public stops denying the violence that took place.

It is going to be very interesting to see how the perception of January 6th evolves over time. Today, Americans are still struggling to accept the facts. However, the facts are not going away. Sworn testimony has been added to the record.

It’s now up to us to adjust our thinking based on what the facts have revealed.

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Walter Rhein is an author with Perseid Press. He also does a weekly column for The Writing Cooperative on Medium.

Chippewa Falls, WI
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