Historic and Civic Illiteracy

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The other evening, I was watching the Stanley Cup Playoffs and was preparing for a good hockey game. Prior to the game, a World War II soldier who had been in the wave that invaded Normandy, a 96-year-old man, was presented as an example of the men that have kept this nation free.

The announcer said something like this: “We are here to remember June 6, 1941, D-Day, that marked the entry of the United States into World War II.”

Now, in case that passed over your head, and you, too, are historically illiterate, what marked the entry of the United States into World War II was the attack by the Empire of Japan on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on Sunday morning, December 7, 1941. The United States was actively involved in a brutal war for two-and-a-half years before the D-Day landings on the coast of occupied France on June 6, 1944.

It’s not just that the announcer got it wrong, he only read what was given to him by another person … a writer or a producer, perhaps. Still, shouldn’t someone have approved it? Of course, they did. And therein lies the tragedy. Many Americans are stupid when it comes to their own country.

Think not? A few years ago (while Barack Obama was prsident), some politically active students at Texas Tech decided to do a survey, choosing students at random, to ask a few questions. One question was, “Who won the Civil War?” The answers? “The South?” “The Confederates?” Another question was, “Who is our current vice-president?” A number of students said, “I have no idea,” with one asking, “Is that a trick question?”

When asked who we gained our independence from, a number of students were totally clueless and had no idea. For those who remain clueless, the answers to the survey were (A) The North, (B) Joe Biden, and (C) Great Britain.

Jesse Watters, of Fox News Channel, made his bones partially by being a “man on the street” and asking college students simple questions that any American ought to know.

I remember seeing two interviews of college students (I’m not sure if it was a Watters interview) in which one student was asked, “Who did the United States fight in the Spanish-American War? The student didn’t know.

Another student was asked, “Who did the United States fight in the Korean War?” Crickets. The student couldn’t recall. For the record, the answers were (A) Spain and (B) North Korea. Duh. The level of ignorance was appalling. But historical and civic ignorance of our own country is not limited to college students.

In a survey done in 1998 by the Los Angeles Times, 38% of Americans surveyed did not know that the “Star Spangled Banner” was our national anthem. The survey also revealed that 40% of Americans could not name 1776 as the year the Declaration of Independence was signed. In 2009, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute discovered in a civics survey that only half the adults in the country could name the three branches of government: executive, legislative, and judicial.

A 2010 study by the National Association of Educational Progress demonstrated that only 9% of 4th graders could identify Abraham Lincoln from a photograph.

So, who cares? Why does this matter? It matters because people who don’t understand history, as the old saying goes, are doomed to repeat it. Anyone with the slightest brush with history knows that Communism is one of the deadliest plagues in all of human history to hit the earth in the 20th and 21st century. Those who extol its virtues are ignorant of historical fact. It ruins every single population and nation it touches. It has murdered tens of millions.

Anyone — anyone — who calls an American politician, whatever party he may claim, a “Nazi,” is telegraphing that they have no understanding whatsoever who the Nazis were or what they did. The same goes for the slur “Fascist.”

If one is ignorant about World War II, here’s a suggestion: Amazon Prime has a series called, “World War II Diaries” that is a day-to-day account of the activities during the war. Each episode is about an hour long. There are 73 episodes. If nothing else, you will learn who the good and the bad guys were, and you will learn enough about Communism and Nazism to understand the evil they represented and will stop looking uneducated when you call someone a Nazi.

For that matter, you will also understand the barbarity and butchery of the Japanese Empire. You also may come away less critical about the use of the atomic bomb against Japan. If one doesn’t know the facts, all one has is an opinion, which, without facts, is worthless.

We have had our own share of butchery and evil in this country, I do not deny that. We committed near genocide against native peoples, and we enslaved an entire race of people for economic reasons and inhibited the freedom of that race for 100 years after their ancestors were freed. It is that history and the re-telling of it that forbids us from returning to such times.

It is the knowledge of the Holocaust that cost the lives of 6 million Jews and the re-telling of that history inflicted on a people and perpetuated by people my parent’s age, or a bit older, that inhibits a return to anti-Semitism except in the parts of the world that are given over to extremism. Or except among ignorant people.

Does it matter that an NHL announcer got D-Day all wrong? Yes, because it is symbolic of a creeping ignorance that has already permeated most high schools and colleges in this nation. This failure to educate in the important areas is among the reasons that parents are, in ever increasing numbers, sending their kids to private schools, religious schools, or are sacrificing to do homeschooling.

For those parents who have students in the public education system, every parent should know what is being taught, what the textbooks say, and if teachers and school boards are pushing an agenda other than education. Go to school conferences, PTA meetings, school board meetings, and, if changes need to be made, run for the school board.

There are plenty of good teachers in schools and good professors in colleges and universities. They teach what they are supposed to teach and help the student become a productive, responsible citizen of the greatest nation in the history of the world. But there are those, especially in universities, that are subverting the minds, beliefs, and morals of your students.

By the way, the Texas Tech students who could not answer the questions about their own country all know who “Snookie” was, and they all knew that, at the time, Brad Pitt was married to Angelina Jolie and had been married to Jennifer Aniston. Homer Simpson looks brighter every day.

[David Epps is the Rector of the Cathedral of Christ the King (www.ctk.life). The church has worship services at 10:00 a.m. on Sundays but is also live streaming at www.ctk.life. He is the bishop of the Diocese of the Mid-South (www.midsouthdiocese.life). He may be contacted at davidepps@ctk.life.]

46 COMMENTS

  1. DH – Perhaps you can provide a credible explanation of how the riot could have prevented Biden from assuming office. As for the riot, I think is was disgraceful as the peaceful protest turned violent.

    The people responsible for the violence should be punished as should the those from the summer before that racked cities across this country, don’t you agree?

    It was Trump’s ego that delayed his call. Trump, as does Hillary and Stacey Abrams all have egos so huge that they can’t except the fact they lost. None deserve a vote by the public again. I knew that about Trump before he was ever elected and why I’ve never been able to bring myself to voting for him. Hillary was a disappointment although suspected. Disgraceful yes, criminal no. Why do you think he has not been brought to trial in a court of law, rather than the congressional hearing which can only influence public opinion?

    • TSWL – I’m glad to hear that you saw through the orange narcissist all the way back in 2016. It also sounds like you have stayed far away from the MAGA Kool-Aid.

      Like you, I believe that all rioters who break the law should be punished. Any BLM rioters who broke the law should be prosecuted as should the 1/6/21 rabble.

      We differ on the criminality of the 45th president. I believe that he is guilty of conspiracy to commit fraud and overthrow the 2020 presidential election. A prosecutor need not prove that the conspiracy would have worked, only that the criminal intended it to work. Wouldn’t it be rich if Attorney General Merrick Garland (who should be sitting on the Supreme Court) gained the conviction? That kind of justice seems only to happen in movies.

      • STF – I’d love to know what his game plan really was as I don’t see any path to vacating the outcome outside of trying to persuade congress to cast out enough electoral votes to give him a majority, but I think that was the ultimate idea of sending the protesters over. No matter how I look at it I haven’t been able to find a plan that works. My question here is earnest because I’ve looked at this from every angle I could think of.

        Even if Pence went along with Trump and rejected the battleground states, the house votes to override him, and in he Senate I think Romney, Murkowski and Collins along with all the Dems would vote to override him just to get rid of Trump, I think the vast majority of the republican senate would also vote to override him out of duty to democracy.

        He could be just that crazy to think that it might fly. I think the proverbial pig might have a better chance at becoming airborne.

        • TSWL – Like you, I can divine no Constitutional avenue for DJT to remain in office. However, it became clear from the outset of his presidency that he had no organized program to accomplish anything. He merely repeated (unfiltered) whatever he last heard or whatever craziness came to his mind. Heck, for the first time EVER, the Republican party didn’t even present a platform in the 2020 presidential race because DJT was too undisciplined and unpredictable to articulate any coherent plan to govern. Listen to any of his speeches. They consist of slogans and insults delivered in half sentences.

          All I can conclude is that John Eastman and other “yes men” around him told him that the election results could be overturned, so he proceeded to inspire a popular revolt of equally ignorant citizens to “stop the steal.”

          The 1/6 Congressional investigators are trying to sort this out. Liz Cheney presented some of their conspiracy findings last week, and more are sure to come.

          Perhaps DJT believes that pigs do fly at Trump Tower and that he can rule by fiat.

          • TSF, I agree and think that Trump’s legal advisor John Eastman (a so-called constitutional scholar?) is the key here when unraveling the planned and “coordinated” efforts to overturn the election results – in specific key battleground states. When WH attorney Hershman asked Eastman on Jan 7, the day after the siege on the Capitol building, “Are you out of your effin’ mind?” Well, that is most telling right there. That and his (Hershman) follow up to Eastman – with some sage advice, “Get a great criminal defense attorney.”

  2. Doon — Thank you for your civic lesson, as it clearly shows that the stated goals of STL’s alleged “many insurrectionists” could not prevent the confirmation of the new president elect, and their actions would not directly alter the due process.

    STF further went to state that through his not so giant leap, that the sitting president could declare marshal law (through the actions of the rioters) in order to remain in power. Unfortunately I think another civic lesson is due. I see no way that martial law can restrict Congress from performing their appointed duties, nor does invoking martial law allow for the extension of a term of the sitting president.

    Both of you have insinuated that Pence plays any kind of key roll that could alter the outcome, either through being killed.

    If something were to have happened to Pence, his duty would fall to the president pro tempore (Grassy) and he would take over to lead the ceremony, as part of the named succession.

    Further, the acting president does not have the power to overrule the will of the joint congress. This did happen in 1857. Subsequently the Electoral Counting Act in 1887 passed and it directly limited the power of the VP and congress. And relegates the president of the senate to a more ceremonial role. The president of the senate does not even get the tie breaking vote, which goes to the governor.

    So far nobody has put forth a realistic and credible scheme these rioters could likely achieve an overthrow of the government.

    STF – I am a strong believer in the right of the people to assemble and make their voices known to their legislators. That right stops at the barricades, and once crossed they become rioters, and should be dealt with accordingly. There is no place for violence. Therefore there is no such thing as a peaceful riot, and I’m sorry you failed to see the sarcasm in my opening remark. Having watched a summer of rioting, looting and destruction of public and private property only to have the elected authority turn their backs. While the self proclaimed “the trusted name in news” ran chyrons stating “Fiery but mostly peaceful protests” as Kenosha Wisconsin burns in the background.

    You are grossly overstating your claim that their actions would come close to achieving a successful coup d’etat.

    • LuLu – Jack Del Rio, Def-Coordinator of the NFL Washington football team, was fined $100K on Friday for his public comments on the Capitol Building siege as a “dust-up.” Yeah, he forgot to use the “sarcasm” defense. Typical of defensive coordinators I guess.

  3. It is interesting that my thoughts emerging from an historically inaccurate statement at a NHL game could stir all this rancor up and somehow lead to the conclusion that the column was related somehow to January 6 and/or President Trump. It reminds me of those ancient peoples who saw a demon, witch, or werewolf behind every bush. Some of you are seeing things that aren’t there.
    David Epps

    • Kind of like how you took an inaccurate statement and twisted it into creeping ignorance courtesy of our education system.

      A mistake was made. Big deal. Every single one of us makes them from time to time.

    • I know what you mean Rev. Epps. It’s sort of like when some aging marine sees a kid wearing his military swag he bought at Walmart and goes apoplectic about “stolen honor.” It’s truly amazing how many witches, demons, and werewolves one finds when looking for them, isn’t it.

    • Fr. Epps–I thought the same things as Dawns and Strangers comments concerning you reading more into a statement that was intended.

      I would add that all of us tend to learn about and research subjects that interest us. For you, it seems to be competitive sports, military service, law enforcement authority, martial arts…is it fair to say that even your vision of the role of a Christian is that of a militant soldier following a warrior King?

      I don’t think the announcer meant any disrespect with his incorrect statement. Frankly, I credit the “chip on your shoulder” when it comes to defending might is right.

      I wonder if you would have written such a piece if you overheard…oh, the wrong year of the Stonewall Riots.
      (1969 in New York City).

      Or if Thurgood Marshall was mis-identified. (The first African-American Supreme Court Justice, serving 1967 to 1991).

      Or if accurate information about the right for women to vote in our country was fumbled. (1919 the 19th amendment to the Constitution granted the right to vote to women).

      Better yet, perhaps one day you will pen a column defending the statement concerning war by Isaiah–
      “…and they shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.”

      Give peace a chance, Father.

    • Rev Epps – It appears you took great care to avoid partisanship in your column. Instead of agreeing or disagreeing with what your position it would seem by some you were made a foil to allow a segue into the promotion of own political partisanship. Some appear to paint you as a hypocrite to discredit you rather than discredit your argument to a audience that has no context. For my part in continuing this, I do apologize, as you have made some valid points to which I agree with.

      I believe the awareness you bring to the subject is important for parents regardless of their politics.

      • Thank you. I have almost become accustomed to my words and thoughts being twisted so that someone else can present their own agenda. I have made no secret of the fact that I am a conservative, not a Republican, and that has been enough to make me a target. But, I am a big boy with ever thickening skin and I’m glad we live in a country where, thus far, we still have freedom of speech. Except in venues where the woke temporarily rule.

        • Tweety1951–Perhaps it is not “thickening skin” that you need. May I suggest a kinder heart, a broader mind, and a clearer world vision.

          I am curious–do you ever regret a column you penned? Any retractions?

          I have been reading your words for many years (since paper days). I never thought of you as a “target”; but some of your opinion pieces were questionable.

          We all seem to have our most memorable ones. Personally I can recall two–in one, you were championing an acquaintance that had discovered he was not genetically the father of the child he was raising. If I recall correctly, you were bemoaning the injustice of his financial support of a child not his own.

          Your other questionable assertion (in my opinion) was a Biblical justification for having firearms in homes for self defense. Of course, that is your right and your choice…but endorsed by Jesus, the Christ?

          Which brings me to your use of “woke”. Would you please define that?

          I would say woke is to be aware, alert, enlightened…and I would assert that Jesus was the epitome of woke. And He was never more so than giving His radical sermon on the mount.

          Thank you for taking the time.

          • The term “woke” I am not clear on as well, so a while back I researched it after not getting a definitive or a satisfactory reply from many a likeminded republican friends. Upon my review I determined that most that do use the term in a derogatory way, do not know for what they speak. Suz, I do appreciate your definition by the way and await Rev. Epps explanation / definition of … “woke.”

          • What I take woke to mean is a disciple of progressive activism.

            Someone would be considered woke if they chastised persons who state that only a females can have a period or give birth, and will be quick to point out that men can give birth too, as not to be exclusionary.

            Being woke means we must ignore the tens of thousands of blacks murdered in our country and focus public attention on a small fraction of cases where black men were killed by excessive use of force citing the need to defund the police rather than

          • Someone is considered woke when they attack those who asks “don’t those tens of thousands of black lives matter too?”

          • Yeah, that was the typical response I got for “woke” by some like yourself … for an Afro-American saying or slogan that by definition … refers to being aware of and actively attentive to important facts and issues (especially issues of racial and social justice) per the Meriam Webster definition. And of course, I understand now and clearly see it is used to mock or infantilize supporters of those movements.

          • ToSirWithLove–As I understand it, “woke” originated during the repeated incidents of (mostly) black men killed due to systematic racism and brutality in law enforcement. Perhaps the most graphic was the final minutes of the life of Mr. George Floyd.

            Since then, use of the term has broadened to the willingness to recognize discrimination in other areas.

            I still maintain that the perfect example of this willingness is the life and teachings of Jesus.

            “..to proclaim good news to the poor..to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free…”

            You don’t get much more woke or progressive than that! Or more wonderful.

            His message upset some then; mostly those who benefitted from the status quo. And obviously from your comments, it still has the power to upset now.

        • “I am a big boy with ever thickening skin and I’m glad we live in a country where, thus far, we still have freedom of speech. Except in venues where the woke temporarily rule.”

          LOL you sort of belied your first assertion with the second! “I’m a big boy, I can take it … wah wah wah the woke people won’t let me talk.”

          Where exactly in this country do you think a conservative white man isn’t allowed to have his say? You even have a platform to do it! The self-proclaimed victimhood of conservative white folks in the USA is ridiculous.

          And Suz, once again, you make a great point:

          “I would say woke is to be aware, alert, enlightened…and I would assert that Jesus was the epitome of woke. And He was never more so than giving His radical sermon on the mount.”

        • You’ve got a point Father Epps. Who doesn’t pine for those pre-woke days when you could slap your secretary on the rear, and she was expected to laugh along with you? Or when you could tell her how sexy she looked in that red dress, and she was supposed to thank you. Remember when you could use clear Archie Bunker language and extol the superiority of the white race while calling a spade a spade without a smidgen of self reproachment.

          And when that teenager came to you for counsel about his sexual identity confusion, you could dispose with any empathy. You just told him to spend some time with an experienced lady, and “then you’ll forget about other boys!”

          And who can forget those halcyon days when it was enough that you didn’t take advantage of the children in your parish. With all this foolish wokeness now, you’re supposed to squeal on your fellow pastors and priests. Don’t people understand that clergy will be clergy?

          I could go on, but I see your point. These woke requirements sure spoil all the fun

          • Looks like somebody is exceedingly glad there was a Derek Chauvin out there to be that spark for a better you.

          • Hiya, brewster; it’s been awhile.

            My apologies if I gave the impression that I was in any way “glad” about the behavior of Derek Chauvin (police officer or not). At best, I am grateful that his heinous act was recorded on video; and that decent people world-over were outraged and moved to protest.

            Surely some humane part of Chauvin was nonexistent , allowing him to callously pin down a dying man. Or perhaps some Divine part.
            I hope never to watch such evil unfolding and not realize it is simply
            inexcusably wrong.

            The point is not just to “spark” us into being a better person; but to work to make a better world for all.

            Call it “woke” if you like.
            I call it “Christ”.

  4. And to David Epps. I have a different take in response to your column. The “man on the street” bits are either done for comedy or shock value. They purposely don’t include footage of people that got the answers right. You mention the Texas survey but include no statistics. I’m guessing if I looked up the survey, the majority couldn’t answer some obvious questions. You say it matters. In some circumstances it possibly does. Most of the time, it doesn’t. For various reasons, not everyone is going to know the answers to everything all the time. That doesn’t mean they can’t or won’t learn it. I know when I was younger, I was terrible in history, geography, and political facts. I wasn’t interested. Over time that changed. I did not vote until I turned 24 and when I registered, I did so as a Republican. Why? Because my whole family with the exception of my paternal grandparents were Republican. We lived in a Republican county and at that time, a red state. It wasn’t because I did my research, it was because I went along with the crowd. Over the years, my interests changed and my political views changed. I became more independent in my thinking. It isn’t uncommon. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe your underlying message is people should become educated before voting. I can agree, but what education do you think I should subscribe to? Should I view the world as you do, or so other schmuck? I’d argue that today one is more exposed to history or political happenings due to the internet. One can argue about the quality of information published, but remember years ago, what we were taught was based on the teacher we had and the area we lived. It isn’t that much different today. One might think that you believe if everyone was “educated”, they would always vote Republican. I think we both know, that isn’t the case. You’re always going to have a percentage of the population that votes with the crowd. Many do. The majority of the time, especially down-ballot, people only look to see if the candidate has an R or a D next to their name. They haven’t the foggiest idea who the person is. That isn’t going to change and why? Because we’re all human and we’re all different. You can thank God for that.

  5. How timely David, a reminder on civic illiteracy. At the 100th anniversary at Aisne-Marne Cemetery in France in 2018, former president Trump skipped out of the formal ceremony while there (light rain) and made some purportedly off-the-cuff and derogatory comments about the fallen there. On the trip, he asked his aides, “Who were the good guys in this war?” And let’s not forget the top of the list of civics illiteracy “teachers” currently for the Trumplicans in MGT in northern Georgia. Hmm, apparently you and Jessie Waters relish in chastising the youth of America when it should be aimed elsewhere.

    • I also noticed that while Rev. Epps was castigating the citizenry for their ignorance of history and civics, he somehow forgot about those fine citizens who attempted a coup d’etat on 1/6/20221. Apparently, they hadn’t read about the electoral college and our history of a peaceful transfer of the Presidency. And as you point out, Doon, to have endured a Chief Executive who couldn’t pass the U.S. Citizenship test speaks much louder than these history-challenged person-on-the street interviews.

      I think Rev. Epps’ holy book calls it straining at gnats and swallowing camels.

      • Lest we forget (STF) too that when he took office, he did not know there were three (3) branches of the government designed for checks and balances. Later claiming, “What’s the Czechs & Balkans have to do with things?” Nah, just threw that last part in for slight humor during these very serious times on Capitol Hill.

      • STF – Please do explain how you believe these “mostly peaceful” protestor could overthrow government without so much as even one “scary looking assault rifle” albeit they did have one scary looking horned dude. And they did manage to make AOC wet her knickers even though she wasn’t even in the building. I’m sorry, its hard to take people serious when the hyperbole is neck deep with terms like insurrection and coup d’etat. Perhaps the demonstrations would have been more appropriate at the swearing (Trump and Kavanaugh come to mind.)

        The electoral college had already voted. The formality remained in accepting the count by congress. They could disrupt the process causing a brief delay by occupying the capital building in protest of what they felt was a stolen election. A cry common amongst democrats candidates in the two prior election cycles (2016,2018).

        I deplore rioters, and feel the 6th commission would have better served the public interest by listening to the claims of election fraud, investigating them in a true bipartisan effort and showing that while minor fraud may have taken place the results would be the same.

        • TSWL – Turn off Fox News for 5 minutes and watch the Congressional investigation into this insurrection. Abetted by the sitting president, rioters breached the Capitol, assaulted police, and attempted to disrupt the electoral count so the defeated president would not have to leave office. These insurrectionists were “mostly peaceful” only in the imaginations of revisionists. I assume that they left their guns at home because using them would have justified a retaliatory response from the military. I wish they had left their tear gas, bear spray, and naked aggression back at home as well.

          As for “claims of election fraud,” how many judges have to rule against these preposterous claims to convince Trumpers that they are false? The 45th president had his days in court, and not even the most conservative judges found in his favor. Why would Congress waste further energy on proving something that has been substantiated repeatedly by every unbiased tribunal?

          “Insurrection” and “attempted coup d’etat” are descriptive, not hyperbole. The intransigence of any person or lawmakers to label them otherwise represents a willful ignorance and encourages future attacks on our democratic republic.

        • STF – Disrupting the proceedings would not have prevented the certification from occurring well in advance of the schedule transition of power two weeks later. At best, if they decided to stage a “sit-in” it would only prevent the certification from occurring in the Capital Building.

          Perhaps if we cold settle this point, we can move on to addressing some of the other points. I don’t think Tom Clancy could have even been able to put believable credibility in the tale you are attempting to weave so far.

          Explain to me how at best a 24 or 48 hour delay would have prevented the certification from happening, and preventing Trump from remaining in office past Jan 20th.

          • Last Paragraph should read:

            Explain to me how at best a 24 or 48 hour delay would have prevented the certification from happening, and allowed Trump to remain in office past Jan 20th.

        • As explained to Mike King (PTC Council) last year on a similar thread who defended the Trump mob as “mostly peaceful,” if I showed up at a council meeting wearing similar tactical clothing and gear, carrying similar weaponry to bash people’s brains in, and chanted I wanted to kill specific people thought to be at the meeting, I would most assuredly be denied entry, arrested on the spot and be serving time by now.

          As for the cache of assault rifles (tswl) you mentioned, the committee will show no doubt that they were being kept back in their hotel rooms and in parked cars (outside the metro area) and could easily be retrieved to meet continued resistance with deadly force. This was a planned and organized event (coordinated?) by those that wanted to change the election outcome. Your (tswl) arguments are once again weak, dripping with strong denials and contrary to the vast numbers of US public opinion.

          • Doon – What is weak is the assertion that neither of you has been able to answer that disrupting the certification would have prevented it from happening which is the core of the claim that this protest would have prevented the certification of the election on or before Jan 20th.

            This should be a simple question. How does occupying the Capital Building prevent the certification of the electoral college vote results? How does this cause an infinite delay that prevents the joint session from ever taking place in the following two weeks.

          • TSWL – The stated goal of the insurrectionists was to “stop the steal.” The stated claims of many of the insurrectionists was to kill Mike Pence, Nancy Pelosi, and other legislators and to substitute fake electors amenable to subverting the Constitutional transfer of power. And some Senators were vocally quite willing to go along with this charade.

            The 1/6 Congressional investigators have stated that the insurrectionists hoped to cause chaos and introduce anarchy into the proceedings. It is not a huge leap to see the 45th president then declaring martial law, invoking military control, and remaining in power indefinitely. He has proven countless times that he would make any claim or go to any extent to stay in or return to power. Enough of the civics-challenged citizenry that Rev. Epps describes might have gone along with this coup d’etat. Indeed, a sizable proportion of republican voters even now believe the Big Lie that the last presidential election was improperly conducted even though it has been thoroughly discredited by almost every thoughtful conservative – even Bill Barr – and repeatedly been thrown out of dozens of courts.

            This is merely one scenario of what could have easily happened if the insurrectionists weren’t so inept. And I loved the Freudian slip in your previous email. There is no doubt where your sympathies lie.

          • STL – The Electors met in December and voted. It was already done and decided Biden won. So where do these fake electors come into play?

          • Civics lesson: The Electoral College process calls for each state’s slate of “winning” electors to meet at their respective state’s capital on the first Monday after the second Wednesday in December to cast their electoral votes. [No need to get into “faithless” electors here]

            The congressional certification of votes cast by the Electoral College occurs after the third day of January following the swearing-in of the new Congress. Within the provisions of the 12th Amendment of the US Constitution, this confirms the successful candidate – as the official “President-Elect” under the Constitution until the Inauguration Day.

            Yes, there was no successful prevention of the certification process – only a very long delay, because the sitting VP survived the assault on the Capitol Building and proceeded to fulfill his Constitutional duty later that evening. If memory serves, that was 1-2am the next morning.

          • TSWL – Just wondering – Since you minimize the consequences of rioters storming the capital at the behest of the sitting president to stop the transition of power (whether it would have been successful or not), do you find any fault at all with the 45th president and his stop the steal movement?

            I’m not sure if I’m communicating with someone who merely likes to argue or a full-fledged MAGA devotee and Fox believer.

          • TSWL, are you implying that the insurrection was perfectly fine because the election was a done deal, and there was no way that Biden would not become President?

            You MAGAt’s are living in a self-induced fantasy land. It appears that you just want to pretend events didn’t happen or their severity doesn’t warrant scrutiny. Downplaying events is a feeble attempt at not taking responsibility when one effs up. Are you embarrassed by the actions of the insurrectionists and can’t admit it? Or, do you defend their actions and wish they’d been more successful in continuing the charade? I believe you know what they did was wrong and then go a step further to minimize it. That tells me that you are one of low morals and not one to be trusted in any way. People that believe the election was stolen are full of delusions and have been duped by the one they are loyal to. Why the continued loyalty to someone that has repeatedly gaslighted his followers? Is it the embarrassment that you were duped, that you were lied to and then accepted it? Do you not have the fortitude to admit it? That’s what I think is going on with the MAGAt’s, they want to continue the charade, continue the lies, continue to minimize, continue to make up stories, continue to gaslight, because those things are easier to do than to be honest with yourself. Multiple conservatives in high positions, begged Trump to take action during the chaos and he did nothing for hours. He reveled in the destruction. It’s hilarious that now, those same people have crawled back to him because their political future is on the line. These people have sold their souls long ago and represent the human garbage of this earth.
            And when you ultimately reply, I’d like you to remember – this conversation is about January 6th, 2021 and the events surrounding that day. It isn’t about the economy, it isn’t about Joe Biden, it isn’t about gas prices or inflation. All of those things are worthy discussions and I’d be glad to engage, but don’t even think about trying to change the subject with whataboutisms.

      • STF – Are you talking about our current executive, or our previous. At least the present one might have been able to 20 years ago. I’m not sure the lady in waiting (Harris) could either.

        • I’m pretty sure that George H.W. Bush was the last republican president who could have passed the 100-item U.S. Citizenship test. However, I know that the unsuccessful nominees since 1992 (Doyle, McCain, Romney) could have all passed with flying colors. And except for Sarah Palin, I know that all of the successful and unsuccessful republican vice presidential nominees could pass as well. The democrats have not had a nominee in my lifetime who would struggle, and frankly, no nominee for either party was ignorant of civics going back to at least 1920. I’m unsure that Warren Harding cared about the three branches of government as long as his cronies were getting rich.