Trump’s Capitol Offense

My dad marked the man’s gun by carving his initials with a penknife on the handle. At the trial, when the defense lawyer superciliously grilled Mike Joseph Dowd about how he could be sure that the gun in evidence was the same one used in the crime, Dad told him to look on the bottom of the handle. There was the “MJD.”

He respected politicians based on their humanity, not their ideology.

Donald Trump’s inhumanity, his sick torrent of lies and incitement, came to its inevitable, shameful end on Wednesday, when a mob smeared blood, excrement, hate and death all over the Capitol.

At least Trump put my conservative siblings and me on the same page for once. We agreed — seeing the mob crash in; seeing lawmakers fearing for their lives, crouching and hiding and making calls to plead for the cavalry to come from any of the myriad federal and local police forces here, as Confederate flags waved— that this was a heartbreaking disgrace. It would have enraged my father.

Not only was a Capitol policeman killed after being hit by a fire extinguisher, the entire security apparatus meant to protect our democracy failed. Was the pathetic response to the anarchy engineered by Trump? It would not be the first time he sabotaged the government he was running. He was not even moved to protect his own lickspittle, the vice president, who was in the chamber when it was attacked.

In New York, Donald Trump was a corrupt Joker who took cudgels to the historic friezes on Bonwit Teller. In Washington, he became something evil. He took cudgels to history itself, to our institutions, decency and democracy.

He draped his autocratic behavior in the American flag. Surrounded by Lincoln, Washington, Jefferson, F.D.R., M.L.K. and monuments to our war dead, this coward whipped up a horde of conspiracists, white supremacists, neo-Nazis and gullible acolytes to try to steal an election for him. He said he would march to the Capitol with them, but he didn’t, of course. He watched his insurrection on TV, like the bum that he is.

Trump’s Capitol Offense