By Miles Jaye
Today, Wednesday, January 6, 2021, America was invaded! In broad daylight, a faction known to vigorously support President Donald Trump’s assertions that the 2020 election was rigged, and that he and they were robbed of a fair election, occupied the Capitol building in Washington, D.C. They did so at the President’s prodding, and at his bidding.
Today we witnessed an assault on our government and on our nation– from enemies within. We witnessed what I call a White Riot. I listened carefully as broadcasters struggled to find appropriate and fitting terminology to describe the mob. What do we call White rioters? I waited to hear terms typically used to describe rioters, like thugs and hoodlums, but these were White folks, so instead I heard, protesters, and even knuckleheads. Knuckleheads? That they were violently attacking the government and destroying government property makes them enemies of the state, domestic terrorists, not knuckleheads.
In case there is a further loss for words regarding today’s events, here are a few words to describe what we encountered. Invasion, insurrection, uprising, rebellion, revolt, revolution, insurgence, sedition, subversion, civil disorder, civil unrest, anarchy. Today’s action was nothing less than an attempted coup. The participants in the activities of the day– whether violent or non-violent, are traitors to our nation.
I once wrote a song entitled “Mad to Sad.” It was a simple depiction of a complex cycle of emotions experienced by African Americans faced with cycles of brutality and atrocities against Black communities. “I go from mad to sad, sad to mad.” Today, for the first several hours of the invasion I was glad. I was happy for the world to see a White riot, a White mob tearing up the place. I was glad because there was no way to mistake the thugs for anything but White folks.
I was glad right up until the time I noticed how casually defiant they were. My mood began to change. They rioted like they owned the place. I think I was jealous. MSNBC’s Joy Reid said, “White people are not afraid of the cops.” “They had come to claim what was rightfully theirs.” I couldn’t have said it any better, however, had that been a Black Lives Matters crowd, the ground would have been red with blood. In spite of destruction of government property, vandalism, breaking and entering, terroristic threats, I didn’t hear of a single arrest. Sadly, I did hear of a fatality. The worst part is, I don’t think we’ve seen the worst of it.