On Jan. 6, I was watching the official count of the Electoral College votes. Suddenly the reporters outside the Capitol became panicky as they were being pushed and overrun. They reported that the Capitol was being invaded. I watched in terror as a mob of violent people screaming like animals broke windows, beat down doors, and assaulted Capitol police officers.
The insurgent riot was controlled after a few dreadful hours. The traditional formal Electoral College vote count proceeded. Some of the people who invaded the Capitol were arrested. That is all how it should be.
I saw our politicians who either incited or condoned the terrible event at the Capitol were not held accountable by the impeachment process, nor by censure. It is my great hope that we as citizens hold them accountable in other legal and political ways.
We need to affirm that violent behavior is illegal and unacceptable, that our laws will be uniformly enforced. We need to inform our politicians that condoning or inspiring violent behavior is also unacceptable and that we will challenge them with our votes, or lack of votes, and in our conversations with them.
Here in Spearfish we can set a good example of resolving differences and disputes with civil discussions. We can seek to find things we have in common with one another and build strong community connections. Let us hope we have learned something from this terrible assault on our democracy.
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