Before the election, I compared the anticipation of the now past 2020 elections to a thrill ride. At that point, the train was still headed up the first hill and you were wondering whether you had the stomach for the ride. Still ahead were the white-knuckled, stomach-churning twists and turns and loops and corkscrews. November 3 finally arrived and you threw your hands up in the air and maybe let out an excited scream as you plummeted down the first hill of a roller coaster election which was won by Joe Biden, much to the dismay of the 75 million people who voted for Trump.
Since then, the process has, at times, been almost surreal. There have been recounts, audits, legal challenges and legislative challenges in multiple battleground states which have been almost universally unsuccessful, if not outright dismissed. And don’t forget that there was a runoff election in Georgia earlier this month which resulted in two Democrat candidates unseating Republican incumbents, to flip the balance of power in the US Senate. Social media erupted with all kinds of conspiracy theories about how the November election was stolen by the Democrats and that it was the patriotic duty of all Americans to do their part to “stop the steal.” I watched my Twitter timeline fill to capacity with statements by prognosticators that attorney Sidney Powell and/or Linn wood would soon come forward with mountains of evidence indicating that the election was stolen in some fashion.
As a trial lawyer, I live in a world of evidence and proof. I read all of these predictions, none of which came to pass, waiting to see if the Trump legal team was going to bring some evidence, any evidence, to some court somewhere to support Mr. Trump’s claim that the election was stolen. In my world, at some point if you are going to make a claim that an election was stolen, you have to show up with some evidence to prove your claim. That never happened. Apparently frustrated with the lack of success in legal or legislative circles, groups of people began to take matters into their own hands. I along with others watched with dismay as a group of protesters gathered at the US Capitol to protest the certifying of the election by Congress. Unfortunately the protest became an invasion of the US Capitol. Protesting outside is one thing. However, when you storm the gates of the castle, bad things are going to happen. A protester was killed and many were injured.
Tragically, Capitol law enforcement officers were also injured. At least one has died. In the middle of November, after the election, I predicted that the the electoral roller coaster ride may get very bumpy very soon. Looking back, I had no idea what was on the horizon. I don’t believe that anyone could have predicted what was on the horizon.
Democrats and their friends in the media are calling for Unity while in the next breath, identifying Trump supporters with the Ku Klux Klan.
Despite the hue and cry of election fraud and calls to “Stop the steal,” Joe Biden will be inaugurated as the next president of the United States on today as provided in the Constitution. Mr. Trump has indicated that he will not attend the inauguration. On the other hand, thousands of soldiers are in place in Washington to provide security for a virtual inauguration, which seems fitting since Mr. Biden conducted an almost virtual campaign from his basement. (Government officials at varying levels actively discouraging persons from coming to DC to attend the inauguration is just strange.)
If the country was not divided before the election, it is certainly divided now, maybe worse than before, and the political and social fault lines appear to be growing deeper.
There are several roller coasters that I have enjoyed riding in the past that I will no longer ride because they have become too rough for my old bones. I have seen the level of hatred and political upheaval that is currently playing out in the media and on social media before. It wasn’t that long ago… 2016 to be exact. The more things change, the more they stay the same. I’m ready for this thrill ride to come to an end. Unfortunately, I fear that we have just run straight through the station and are going around again. I hope the nation has the stomach for it.
Follow Jerry on Twitter @jaljr.
The First TV contributor network is a place for vibrant thought and ideas. Opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of The First or The First TV. We want to foster dialogue, create conversation, and debate ideas. See something you like or don’t like? Reach out to the author or to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.