O.K. We’ve had our January 6th remembrance. CNN, MSNBC, CBS, ABC et al drenched us with overkill in fine, journalistic abandon. We were forced to relive nearly the whole 525,600 seconds between the original attack and the first annual observance all over again.
So, what now?
Well, for starters, our deeply valued U.S. Capitol structure and grounds have been “hardened.” That’s a military term for reinforcing doors, windows and all access points. Erecting yet more barriers to public entry. More surveillance cameras. More guards.
D.C. area law enforcement and the National Guard are receiving new training in crowd control. Much of it hand-to-hand practice.
Great. The horse is gone, the barn door is new with a big, strong lock.
In other words, when those vile people return for a second attack, everything is in ship-shape order and they won’t get far.
That’s all well and good if you think they’ll be back. I don’t.
Trump’s coalition army of rag-tags, thugs and paramilitary folk have made their point. The point Donald was trying to make. A “surprise” assault on our democratic process with a sidebar of trying to overturn the 2020 election results which were not to his liking. Point made.
No, the next “assault,” I believe, is likely going to be at the state level or in several states simultaneously. Or, even at county or municipal locales. But, there will be a “next time.”
The several thousand who responded to Trump’s dog whistle have gone back into their local nests. You’re not seeing any public displays or incidents of flag waving. No parades. But, (un)social media is full of their activity. Sites nearly all of us know nothing about are very, very busy, according to “techies” who live on the old I-Net.
Proud Boys with their tattoos, the make-believe, but well-armed militias with their hangers-ons, the disassociated, violent street thugs are “talking” to each other constantly.
But, they’re doing so while the FBI, CIA, NSA and hundreds of other law enforcement “techies” listen in. They’ve “got their ears on” and they’re taking notes. While we can most certainly expect more violence in our national future, it likely won’t come as such a surprise. And, the targets will most certainly be forewarned and better prepared.
While all of that is going on, we’re seeing the first signs of another frontal attack. The far-right is making an assault on the ballot box. Here in the desert, we’ve got at least four in the race for governor and another dozen or so signed up to run as Republicans in contests for Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General and Secretary of State. That last race is so very important because the occupant of that coveted office is responsible for state elections.
Other states - Washington, Oregon, California, Montana, Idaho and dozens more - have their own dangerous candidates who - if elected - will change our political landscape for the foreseeable future. And, that landscape will endanger the basic structure of our Republic and could end democracy as we know it.
No, another law-breaking assault on the nation’s Capitol isn’t as likely as the scenario described here. What Trump wants now amounts to a tin-hat, semi-dictatorship. He wants control. Whether as President or some other title known only to him, he wants to be “in charge.” And the 2021 action was his first shot.
The most dangerous things Trump did was (1) show his rabid followers they can go to Washington D.C. and make a ruckus and (2) they have “support” at home in almost every state. They’re no longer isolated. They’ve got strength. How much strength is yet to be determined. So, too, it’s likely even their dangerous leaders don’t know just how much strength they actually have and how to use it.
But, there are former military folks among the “ranks” with knowledge of how to organize, how to communicate, how to operate against chosen targets. They have weapons experience and mission planning knowledge. If they’re in leadership roles in any way, we - and they - will see how much strength is there.
We don’t know when. We don’t know where. But, we’ll hear from them again. Bet the farm.