Protest leaves writer worried about future of Republic

On Jan. 6, 2021, a mob stormed the chamber of the United States Congress. They intended to stop the counting of electoral votes, overthrow the election and seat their candidate.

Their candidate was the president of the United States. He had asked them to come to Washington DC.

“Big protest in D.C. on Jan. 6. Be there, will be wild!”, he tweeted. He set the stage for this by claiming that the election had been stolen but offered no valid evidence to support his claim. He refused to make the concession speech that is the traditional way of acknowledging defeat and supporting a peaceful transition of power. Five of his supporters died on Jan. 6, including a police officer, while he sat watching it like some reality TV show.

One member of that mob reportedly told a court he thought he was “acting on the president’s orders.”

Our founders created a Republic with the adoption of the Constitution in 1788. In 2016, almost 63 million people voted for a candidate who has expressed admiration for the authoritarian government of Vladimir Putin; a government that does not have to deal with the will of the people. In 2020, 74 million people voted for him.

I fear what such support for a candidate who believes, not in democracy, but in the absolute rule of a single person, means for the future of our Republic. I pray that this government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. — Charles Hughes, Hinsdale