Thursday, January 21, 2021

Inaugural Address by President Joseph R. Biden, Jr.

 


Chief Justice Roberts, Vice President Harris, Speaker Pelosi, Leader Schumer, Leader McConnell, Vice President Pence, distinguished guests, and my fellow Americans. This is America's day. This is democracy's day. A day of history and hope. Of renewal and resolve.

Through a crucible for the ages, America has been tested anew and America has risen to the challenge. Today, we celebrate the triumph not of a candidate, but of a cause, the cause of democracy. The will of the people has been heard and the will of the people has been heeded. We have learned again that democracy is precious. Democracy is fragile.

And at this hour, my friends, democracy has prevailed. So now, on this hallowed ground where just days ago violence sought to shake this Capitol's very foundation, we come together as one nation, under God, indivisible, to carry out the peaceful transfer of power as we have for more than two centuries. We look ahead in our uniquely American way -- restless, bold, optimistic -- and set our sights on the nation we know we can be and must be…

This is a great nation, and we are a good people. Over the centuries through storm and strife, in peace and in war, we have come so far. But we still have far to go. We will press forward with speed and urgency, for we have much to do in this winter of peril and possibility. Much to repair. Much to restore. Much to heal. Much to build. And much to gain.

Few periods in our nation's history have been more challenging or difficult than the one we're in now. A once-in-a-century virus silently stalks the country. It's taken as many lives in one year as America lost in all of World War II. Millions of jobs have been lost. Hundreds of thousands of businesses closed. A cry for racial justice some 400 years in the making moves us. The dream of justice for all will be deferred no longer. A cry for survival comes from the planet itself. A cry that can't be any more desperate or any clearer. And now, a rise in political extremism, white supremacy, domestic terrorism that we must confront and we will defeat.

To overcome these challenges—to restore the soul and to secure the future of America—requires more than words. It requires that most elusive of things in a democracy: Unity…

I ask every American to join me in this cause. Uniting to fight the common foes we face: anger, resentment, hatred, extremism, lawlessness, violence, disease, joblessness, hopelessness. With unity we can do great things. Important things. We can right wrongs. We can put people to work in good jobs. We can teach our children in safe schools. We can overcome this deadly virus. We can reward work, rebuild middle class, and make health care the secure for all. We can deliver racial justice. We can make America, once again, the leading force for good in the world.

I know speaking of unity can sound to some like a foolish fantasy. I know the forces that divide us are deep and they are real. But I also know they are not new. Our history has been a constant struggle between the American ideal that we are all created equal and the harsh, ugly reality that racism, nativism, fear, and demonization have long torn us apart. The battle is perennial. Victory is never assured.

Through the Civil War, the Great Depression, World War, 9/11, through struggle, sacrifice, and setbacks, our "better angels" have always prevailed. In each of these moments, enough of us came together to carry all of us forward. And, we can do so now. History, faith, and reason show the way, the way of unity.

We can see each other not as adversaries, but as neighbors. We can treat each other with dignity and respect. We can join forces, stop the shouting, and lower the temperature. For without unity, there is no peace, only bitterness and fury. No progress, only exhausting outrage. No nation, only a state of chaos. This is our historic moment of crisis and challenge, and unity is the path forward. And, we must meet this moment as the United States of America.

If we do that, I guarantee you, we will not fail. We have never… failed in America when we have acted together. And so today, at this time and in this place, let us start afresh. All of us. Let us listen to one another; hear one another; see one another; show respect to one another. Politics need not be a raging fire destroying everything in its path. Every disagreement doesn't have to be a cause for total war. And, we must reject a culture in which facts themselves are manipulated and even manufactured.

My fellow Americans, we have to be different than this. America has to be better than this. And, I believe America is better than this. Just look around. Here we stand, in the shadow of a Capitol dome that was completed amid the Civil War, when the Union itself hung in the balance. Yet we endured and we prevailed. Here we stand looking out to the great Mall where Dr. King spoke of his dream. Here we stand, where 108 years ago at another inaugural, thousands of protestors tried to block brave women from marching for the right to vote.

Today, we mark the swearing-in of the first woman in American history elected to national office—Vice President Kamala Harris… Here we stand across the Potomac from Arlington National Cemetery, where heroes who gave the last full measure of devotion rest in eternal peace. And here we stand, just days after a riotous mob thought they could use violence to silence the will of the people, to stop the work of our democracy, and to drive us from this sacred ground. That did not happen. It will never happen. Not today. Not tomorrow. Not ever.

To all those who supported our campaign I am humbled by the faith you have placed in us. To all those who did not support us, let me say this: Hear me out as we move forward. Take a measure of me and my heart. And if you still disagree, so be it. That's democracy. That's America. The right to dissent peaceably, within the guardrails of our Republic, is perhaps our nation's greatest strength. Yet hear me clearly: Disagreement must not lead to disunion...

Recent weeks and months have taught us a painful lesson. There is truth, and there are lies. Lies told for power and for profit. And each of us has a duty and responsibility, as citizens, as Americans, and especially as leaders who have pledged to honor our Constitution and protect our nation to defend the truth and to defeat the lies...

We must end this uncivil war that pits red against blue, rural versus urban, conservative versus liberal. We can do this if we open our souls instead of hardening our hearts. If we show a little tolerance and humility. If we're willing to stand in the other person's shoes just for a moment.

Because here is the thing about life: There is no accounting for what fate will deal you. There are some days when we need a hand. There are other days when we're called on to lend one.

That is how we must be with one another. And, if we are this way, our country will be stronger, more prosperous, more ready for the future.

My fellow Americans, in the work ahead of us, we will need each other. We will need all our strength to persevere through this dark winter. We are entering what may well be the toughest and deadliest period of the virus. We must set aside the politics and finally face this pandemic as one nation. I promise you this: as the Bible says “weeping may endure for a night but joy cometh in the morning.” We will get through this, together. The world is watching today.

So here is my message to those beyond our borders: America has been tested and we have come out stronger for it. We will repair our alliances and engage with the world once again. Not to meet yesterday's challenges, but today's and tomorrow's. We will lead not merely by the example of our power but by the power of our example. We will be a strong and trusted partner for peace, progress, and security. We have been through so much in this nation.

And, in my first act as President, I would like to ask you to join me in a moment of silent prayer to remember all those we lost this past year to the pandemic. To those 400,000 fellow Americans—mothers and fathers, husbands and wives, sons and daughters, friends, neighbors, and co-workers. We will honor them by becoming the people and nation we know we can and should be. Let us say a silent prayer for those who lost their lives, for those they left behind, and for our country. Amen.

This is a time of testing. We face an attack on democracy and on truth. A raging virus. Growing inequity. The sting of systemic racism. A climate in crisis. America's role in the world. Any one of these would be enough to challenge us in profound ways. But the fact is we face them all at once, presenting this nation with the gravest of responsibilities.

Now we must step up. All of us. It is a time for boldness, for there is so much to do. And, this is certain, we will be judged, you and I, for how we resolve the cascading crises of our era. Will we rise to the occasion? Will we master this rare and difficult hour? Will we meet our obligations and pass along a new and better world for our children? I believe we must, and I believe we will. And when we do, we will write the next chapter in the American story…

My fellow Americans, I close today where I began, with a sacred oath. Before God and all of you I give you my word. I will always level with you. I will defend the Constitution. I will defend our democracy. I will defend America. I will give my all in your service thinking not of power, but of possibilities, not of personal interest, but of the public good.

And together, we shall write an American story of hope, not fear; of unity, not division; of light, not darkness. An American story of decency and dignity. Of love and of healing; of greatness and of goodness.

May this be the story that guides us. The story that inspires us. The story that tells ages yet to come that we answered the call of history. We met the moment. That democracy and hope, truth and justice, did not die on our watch but thrived. That our America secured liberty at home and stood once again as a beacon to the world. That is what we owe our forebears, one another, and generations to follow.

So, with purpose and resolve, we turn to the tasks of our time. Sustained by faith, driven by conviction, and devoted to one another and to this country we love with all our hearts. May God bless America, and may God protect our troops. Thank you, America.

 

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

He Should Be Charged with Negligent Homicide

 



“The U.S. death toll from the coronavirus eclipsed 400,000 on Tuesday in the waning hours in office for President Donald Trump, whose handling of the crisis has been judged by public health experts a singular failure.




“The running total of lives lost, as compiled by Johns Hopkins University, is nearly equal to the number of Americans killed in World II. It is about the population of Tulsa, Oklahoma; Tampa, Florida; or New Orleans. It is equivalent to the sea of humanity that was at Woodstock in 1969.

“It is just short of the estimated 409,000 Americans who died in 2019 of strokes, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, flu and pneumonia combined.

“And the virus isn’t finished with the U.S. by any means, even with the arrival of the vaccines that could finally vanquish the outbreak: A widely cited model by the University of Washington projects the death toll will reach nearly 567,000 by May 1.

“While the Trump administration has been credited with Operation Warp Speed, the crash program to develop and distribute coronavirus vaccines, Trump has repeatedly downplayed the threat, mocked masks, railed against lockdowns, promoted unproven and unsafe treatments, undercut scientific experts and expressed scant compassion for the victims.

“Even his own bout with COVID-19 seemed to leave him unchanged…

“The nation reached the 400,000 milestone in just under a year. The first known deaths from the virus in the U.S. were in early February 2020, both of them in Santa Clara County, California.

“While the count is based on figures supplied by government agencies around the world, the real death toll is believed to be significantly higher, in part because of inadequate testing and cases inaccurately attributed to other causes early on.

“It took four months to reach the first 100,000 dead. It took just over a month to go from 300,000 to 400,000” (U.S. virus death toll tops 400,000 in Trump’s final hours, Associated Press).



Smatchet


Smatchet

PRONUNCIATION:

(SMACH-uht) 

MEANING:

noun: An insignificant contemptible person.

ETYMOLOGY:

Of Scottish origin. Earliest documented use: 1582.

USAGE:

“Again he wondered how Mieka could be such an infuriating, impossible little smatchet one moment and so gentle and thoughtful the next.” Melanie Rawn; Touchstone; Tom Doherty Associates; 2012.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:

When I despair, I remember that all through history, the way of truth and love has always won. There have been murderers and tyrants, and for a time they can seem invincible. But in the end, they always fall. Think of it, always. -Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (2 Oct 1869-1948)

America has changed over the years. But these values my grandparents taught me -- they haven't gone anywhere. They're as strong as ever; still cherished by people of every party, every race, every faith. They live on in each of us. What makes us American, what makes us patriots, is what's in here. That's what matters. And that's why we can take the food and music and holidays and styles of other countries, and blend it into something uniquely our own. That's why we can attract strivers and entrepreneurs from around the globe to build new factories and create new industries here. That's why our military can look the way it does -- every shade of humanity, forged into common service. That's why anyone who threatens our values, whether fascists or communists or jihadists or homegrown demagogues, will always fail in the end. -Barack Obama, 44th US President (b. 4 Aug 1961) 

from Wordsmith.org


Monday, January 18, 2021

The great polio vaccine mess and the lessons it holds about federal coordination for today’s COVID-19 vaccination effort


“I nervously fell into a long line of fellow first graders in the gymnasium of St. Louis’ Hamilton Elementary School in the spring of 1955. We were waiting for our first injection of the new polio vaccine.

“The National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis – with money raised through its annual March of Dimes campaign – had sponsored field tests for a vaccine developed by Jonas Salk. The nonprofit had acquired sufficient doses to inoculate all the nation’s first and second graders through simultaneous rollouts administered at their elementary schools. The goal was to give 30 million shots over three months.

“Now, more than six decades later, attention focuses on the rollout of two COVID-19 vaccines, following their emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. States have begun to administer them in a rocky and frustratingly slow delivery process – while hundreds of thousands of new cases continue to be diagnosed daily in the U.S.

“While not necessarily comforting, it is useful to recognize that the early days and weeks of mass distribution of a new medication, particularly one that is intended to address a fearful epidemic, are bound to be frustrating. Only after examining the complex polio vaccine distribution process as documented in papers collected in the Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library did I come to understand how partial my childhood memories actually were.

Vaccine distribution 65 years ago

“After I received my polio shot, I remember my parents’ relief.

“The polio virus causes flu-like symptoms in most people. But in a minority of those infected, the brain and spinal cord are affected; polio can cause paralysis and even death. With the distribution of Salk’s vaccine, the much-feared stalker of children and young adults had seemingly been tamed. Within days, however, the initial mass inoculation program went off the rails.

“Immediately following the government’s licensing of the Salk vaccine, the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis contracted with private drug companies for US$9 million worth of vaccine (around $87 million today) – about 90% of the stock. They planned to provide it free to the country’s first and second graders. But just two weeks after the first doses were administered, the Public Health Service reported that six inoculated children had come down with polio.

“As the number of such incidents grew, it became clear that some of the shots were causing the disease they were meant to prevent. 

“After considerable fumbling and outright denial, Surgeon General Leonard Steele first pulled all tainted vaccine off the market. Then, less than a month after the initial inoculations, the U.S. shut down distribution entirely. It wasn’t until the introduction of a new polio vaccine in 1960, created by Albert Sabin, that public trust returned.

History’s lessons for 2021

“This story offers several lessons relevant to the COVID-19 vaccine distribution just now getting rolling.

“First, federal coordination of an emergent lifesaving medical product is critical.

“The federal government had declined to play an active oversight and coordination role for the polio vaccine, but still wanted the credit. The federal Department of Health, Education and Welfare (now Health and Human Services) offered no plan for distribution beyond the privately funded school-based program.

“The department waited a full month after the vaccine was first administered before bringing together a permanent scientific clearance panel. That delay had less to do with formal procedures than with the ideological opposition of Health, Education and Welfare Secretary Oveta Culp Hobby.

“Hobby was a political appointee who had taken office just months before the vaccine was approved. Her reluctance to involve the federal government in matters that she believed were best left in private hands – and her oft-stated fear of ‘socialized medicine’ – meant that safety checks would be left to the private labs producing the vaccine. The results immediately caused dire problems and even avoidable deaths.

“Second, the polio vaccine distribution process demonstrated how vital it is for the federal government to act in ways deserving of public trust. In those hopeful first few weeks of the polio vaccine distribution, those of us lining up for shots had little to fear beyond the sting of an injection. That changed quickly.

“Once some children had in fact been harmed by the shot, obfuscation by government officials, clumsy explanations and delayed responses engulfed the entire production and distribution process in confusion and suspicion. Trust in the government and the vaccine eroded accordingly. Gallup polls found that by June 1955, almost half of the parents who responded said they would not take any further vaccine shots – and the full regimen of polio inoculation required three doses. In 1958, some drug companies halted production, citing ‘public apathy.’ It wasn’t surprising to see a startling upsurge.

“Today, with COVID-19 already highly politicized – polls suggest that a minority of Americans will decline to take any vaccine – it is critical to administer an effective vaccine delivery program in a manner that builds trust rather than undermines it.

“Scattered reports of allergic reactions to the COVID-19 vaccine have generated not the denials of the Eisenhower administration but rather honest and realistic responses from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Particularly for vaccines that require multiple inoculations – both Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two shots administered with a 21- or 28-day gap – mass inoculations will require not just an initial willingness to get the first dose but the maintenance of trust sufficient to get people back for the follow-up.

“There are significant differences in the social-political contexts of the era in which the polio vaccine was distributed and today, including the nature and threat of the two diseases and the technologies of the vaccines. But time and again, the COVID-19 pandemic has revealed disconcerting parallels with mistakes made in the past. The good news is vaccination works – no case of polio has originated in the U.S. since 1979” (The Conversation).”

Bert Spector, Associate Professor of International Business and Strategy at the D'Amore-McKim School of Business, Northeastern University

Unfortunately, we have had to witness malicious and negligent Trump and his incompetent administration: https://teacherpoetmusicianglenbrown.blogspot.com/2020/03/dangerous-ignorance.html


Sunday, January 17, 2021

"The January 6 assault on the Capitol is not an aberration. It has been coming for a very long time" by Heather Cox Richardson


Since right-wing insurrectionists stormed the Capitol on January 6 with the vague but violent idea of taking over the government, observers are paying renewed attention to the threat of right-wing violence in our midst.

For all our focus on fighting socialism and communism, right-wing authoritarianism is actually quite an old threat in our country. The nation’s focus on fighting “socialism” began in 1871, but what its opponents stood against was not government control of the means of production—an idea that never took hold in America—but the popular public policies which cost tax dollars and thus made wealthier people pay for programs that would benefit everyone. Public benefits like highways and hospitals, opponents argued, amounted to a redistribution of wealth, and thus were a leftist assault on American freedom.

In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries that fight against “socialism” took the form of opposition to unionization and Black rights. In the 1920s, after the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia had given shape to the American fear of socialism, making sure that system never came to America meant destroying the government regulation put in place during the Progressive Era and putting businessmen in charge of the government.

When Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt established business regulation, a basic social safety net, and government-funded infrastructure in the 1930s to combat the Great Depression that had laid ordinary Americans low, one right-wing senator wrote to a colleague: “This is despotism, this is tyranny, this is the annihilation of liberty…. The ordinary American is thus reduced to the status of a robot. The president has not merely signed the death warrant of capitalism, but has ordained the mutilation of the Constitution, unless the friends of liberty, regardless of party, band themselves together to regain their lost freedom.”

The roots of modern right-wing extremism lie in the post-World War II reaction to FDR’s New Deal and the Republican embrace of it under President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Opponents of an active government insisted that it undermined American liberty by redistributing tax dollars from hardworking white men to those eager for a handout—usually Black men, in their telling. Modern government, they insisted, was bringing socialism to America. They set out to combat it, trying to slash the government back to the form it took in the 1920s.

Their job got easier after 1987, when the Fairness Doctrine ended. That Federal Communications Commission policy had required public media channels to base their stories on fact and to present both sides of a question. When it was gone, talk radio took off, hosted by radio jocks like Rush Limbaugh who contrasted their ideal country with what they saw as the socialism around them: a world in which hardworking white men who took care of their wives and children were hemmed in by government that was taxing them to give benefits to lazy people of color and “Feminazis.” These “Liberals” were undermining the country and the family, aided and abetted by lawmakers building a big government that sucked tax dollars.

In August 1992, the idea that hardworking white men trying to take care of their families were endangered by an intrusive government took shape at Ruby Ridge, Idaho. Randy Weaver, a former factory worker who had moved his family to northern Idaho to escape what he saw as the corruption of American society, failed to show up for trial on a firearms charge. When federal marshals tried to arrest him, a firefight left Weaver’s fourteen-year-old son and a deputy marshal dead. In the af­termath of the shooting, federal and local officers laid an 11-day siege to the Weavers’ cabin, and a sniper wounded Weaver and killed his wife, Vicki.

Right-wing activists and neo-Nazis from a nearby Aryan Nations compound swarmed to Ruby Ridge to protest the government’s at­tack on what they saw as a man protecting his family. Negotiators eventually brought Weaver out, but the standoff at Ruby Ridge convinced western men they had to arm themselves to fight off the government.

In February of the next year, during the Democratic Bill Clinton administration, the same theme played out in Waco, Texas, when officers stormed the compound of a religious cult whose former members reported that their leader, David Koresh, was stockpiling weapons. A gun battle and a fire ended the 51-day siege on April 19, 1993. Seventy-six people died.

While a Republican investigation cited “overwhelming evidence” that exonerated the government of wrongdoing, talk radio hosts nonetheless railed against the Democratic administration, especially Attorney General Janet Reno, for the events at Waco. What happened there fit neatly into what was by then the Republican narrative of an overreaching government that crushed individuals, and political figures harped on that idea.

Rush Limbaugh stoked his listeners’ anger with reports of the “Waco invasion” and talked of the government’s “murder” of citizens, making much of the idea that a group of Christians had been killed by a female government official who was single and— as opponents made much of— unfeminine (re­actionary rocker Ted Nugent featured an obscene caricature of her for years in his stage version of “Kiss My Glock”).

Horrified by the government’s attempt to break into the cult’s compound, Alex Jones, who would go on to become an important conspiracy theorist and founder of InfoWars, dropped out of community college to start a talk show on which he warned that Reno had “murdered” the people at Waco and that the government was about to impose martial law. The modern militia movement took off.

The combination of political rhetoric and violence radicalized a former Army gunner, Timothy McVeigh, who decided to bring the war home to the government. “Taxes are a joke,” he wrote to a newspaper in 1992. “More taxes are always the answer to government mismanagement…. Is a Civil War Imminent? Do we have to shed blood to reform the current system? I hope it doesn’t come to that. But it might.”

On April 19, 1995, a date chosen to honor the Waco standoff, McVeigh set off a bomb at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. The blast killed 168 people, including 19 children younger than six, and wounded more than 800. When the police captured McVeigh, he was wearing a T-shirt with a picture of Abraham Lincoln and the words “Sic Semper Tyrannis.” The same words John Wilkes Booth shouted after he assassinated Lincoln, they mean “thus always to tyrants,” and are the words attributed to Brutus after he and his supporters murdered Caesar.

By 1995, right-wing terrorists envisioned themselves as protectors of American individualism in the face of a socialist government, but the reality was that their complaints were not about government activism. They were about who benefited from that activism.

In 2014, Nevada cattle rancher Cliven Bundy brought the contradictions in this individualist image to light when he fought the government over the impoundment of the cattle that he had been grazing on public land for more than 20 years. Bundy owed the government more than $1 million in grazing fees for running his cattle on public land, but he disparaged the “Negro” who lived in government housing and “didn’t have nothing to do.” Black people’s laziness led them to abort their children and send their young men to jail, he told a reporter, and he wondered: “are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life… or are they better off under government subsidy?”

Convinced that he was a hardworking individualist, Bundy announced he did not recognize federal power over the land on which he grazed his cattle. The government impounded his animals in 2014, but officials backed down when Bundy and his supporters showed up armed. Republican Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) called Bundy and his supporters “patriots”; Democrat Harry Reid (D-NV), the Senate Majority Leader at the time, called them “domestic terrorists” and warned, “it’s not over. We can’t have an American people that violate the law and then just walk away from it. So it’s not over.”

It wasn’t. Two years later, Bundy’s son Ammon was at the forefront of the right-wing takeover of Oregon’s Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, arguing that the federal government must turn over all public lands to the states to open them to private development. The terrorists called themselves “Citizens for Constitutional Freedom.”


For the past four years, Trump and his enablers have tried to insist that unrest in the country is caused by “Antifa,” an unorganized group of anti-fascists who show up at rallies to confront right-wing protesters. But the Department of Homeland Security this summer identified “anarchist and anti-government extremists” as “the most significant threat… against law enforcement.” According to DHS, they are motivated by “their belief that their liberties are being taken away by the perceived unconstitutional or otherwise illegitimate actions of government officials or law enforcement.” Those anti-government protesters are now joined quite naturally by white supremacists, as well as other affiliated groups.

Right-wing terrorism in American has very deep roots, and those roots have grown since the 1990s as Republican rhetorical attacks on the federal government have fed them. The January 6 assault on the Capitol is not an aberration. It has been coming for a very long time.

—- Heather Cox Richardson 

Notes:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2014/04/15/everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-long-fight-between-cliven-bundy-and-the-federal-government/

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2014/04/24/politicians-denounce-bundys-racist-remarks/

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/06/19/leaked-document-makes-trumps-use-nazi-era-symbol-look-worse/

 


Saturday, January 16, 2021

Eugene Goodman, the officer credited for luring rioters away from senators during the early moments of the Capitol riot

 


“More than 10 million people have seen the video shot by HuffPost reporter Igor Bobic showing a Black Capitol Police officer leading pro-Trump rioters away from where senators were holed up in the Capitol on Jan. 6.

 

“Now, ProPublica has uncovered new footage — amid a trove of content archived from the now-shuttered social platform Parler — that reveals the raw moments before Officer Eugene Goodman’s actions. The clip, recorded minutes after crowds breached a barrier outside, allows the public to see and hear new details from a turbulent day that ultimately led to President Donald Trump’s second impeachment.

“As the just-under-two-minute recording begins and the door is opened, cheers are heard from crowds of demonstrators gathered outside. Once inside, the mob fans out, passing a Senate appointments desk and heading toward a bank of elevators.

“Half of the video depicts the showdown between Goodman and the angry mob, and lets viewers see more clearly the size of the crowd and its rage. ‘Where they countin’ the votes?!’ yells a man in the crowd repeatedly after rioters approach Goodman, who was blocking a corridor and stairs that lead to the Senate floor and other key offices.

“Goodman had been guarding the entrance before demonstrators broke open a door, moments earlier on the west side of the Capitol. After a loud crack, rioters are seen streaming into the building to the sound of glass breaking. Some chanted ‘U-S-A’ as they sought out lawmakers.

“The video also shows the brief, but tense, standoff with Goodman as he keeps his hand on his gun holster. Goodman — eyes wide and mask sliding below his face — continues trying to keep the crowd at bay. ‘Don’t do it!’ someone shouts.

“It soon became clear that Goodman was outnumbered. He turns and heads up the stairs he had been blocking moments earlier. ‘Are you going to beat us all?’ a man in the crowd says. Seconds later, the camera pans to the floor and cuts out.

“The Justice Department said this week that at least 30 people have been charged for crimes committed at the Capitol.

“A bipartisan group of lawmakers has introduced a bill to award Goodman the Congressional Gold Medal for luring the mob away from lawmakers. Goodman is a 40-year-old U.S. Army veteran and deployed with the 101st Airborne Division to Iraq for a year, The Washington Post reported” (ProPublica).

 

Derek WillisJeff KaoLisa Song contributed reporting.


“New video, found in an archive of data uploaded to Parler, includes a fresh look at the mob’s confrontation with Eugene Goodman, the officer credited for luring rioters away from senators during the early moments of the Capitol riot”


Video: https://www.propublica.org/article/capitol-eugene-goodman?utm_source=sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=majorinvestigations&utm_content=river