Imagining yourself standing in the shoes of another is a good way to understand that person’s point of view, and the motives and rationales for the decisions they make. Try picturing yourself as a U.S. congressperson in the Capitol on January 6. You’re doing the things that you were elected to do. Guiding your actions and decisions are the upbringing you have had, your years of education, an understanding of your constituents, The Constitution and U.S. history, also the travel, relationships, financial dealings, fighting and loving, reading, and the spiritual experiences you’ve had. This is a lot, but it never seems to be enough for any of us.

At first it was just a minor distraction, perhaps another text message. There seemed to be some commotion and movement coming from Trump’s rally up at the Lincoln Memorial. There’s some word about a throng of people carrying flags and banners and chanting various things. They’re heading right for the Capitol. Some vague news comes in of other groups encircling the building. There is, of course, nothing to worry about because there are metal barriers, and lots of Capitol policemen protecting the building.

But wait, what’s this? Another message, a rumor goes through the House Chamber that some protestors have shoved the barriers aside and overpowered the guards. Weirdly, the rumor, now a bit of a panic, has it that loud and angry protestors have actually entered the building. What? This can’t be. How could they? Why would they? Who could they be, and what or who might have set them in motion to act this way?

Those were gun shots in the hall. Guards draw guns. Doors are locked. In a House of leaders everyone is shouting orders while taking defensive positions on the floor and under desks. “Quick!” someone shouts, “Out this way!”

It’s not a movie about zombies. UFOs have not invaded. They were not even foreigners or radical leftists. In varying degrees, the invaders were white Republicans and Christians and conservative and thought of themselves as patriotic, blessed and authorized by their beloved leader Donald Trump. On the walk down The National Mall they were 100% certain of themselves. When the cameras zoomed in on their faces there were no doubts, there was no humor, they were not kidding.

It was the eyes, though, where one could see into their very brains and beliefs, however demented, and that was the scary part. In the eyes was a determination to kill or be killed. This was completely justified because their president had ordered it. Everything was unfolding as QAnon had prophesized. The traitorous vice president would hang! The leftist speaker of the House would be shot in the head. Many would be arrested, tortured, and executed. It was a day of reckoning.

Had you been there, how could you have viewed what had happened as anything but a very scary and dangerous invasion? People died, after all, and frankly, it’s amazing that hundreds didn’t die. Certainly, if the invaders had been African-American, or “Antifa,” the defenders would have let lose fusillades. The whole world looked on and they were appalled. They must have said, “It’s nutcase’ism over there. So much for looking to them for leadership.”

On that evening, one would have thought that the craziness had reached a peak, and rational heads would prevail. Liz Cheney viewed and analyzed with a clear mind, along with other responsible law makers, and drew on all her years of upbringing, education, talking and listening and thinking, and experience in life, and called the day’s events exactly what they were: an insurrection against the government and Constitution of the United States, and it was ordered by the deranged, cult-like president, Donald Trump.

All Wyoming Democrats have had many issues with Representative Cheney, but if she were up for re-election right now, we would vote for her. Given that a primary will be involved, we would all have to at least temporarily become Republicans. Statewide, we are 30% of the voters. Also, all moderate and rational Republicans are in agreement. Together we vastly outnumber nutcase Republicans, who are boisterous and fist pumping, but they are cowardly bullies, and they are outnumbered. Together, Democrats and mature Republicans will reward Liz Cheney with another term in the House, or higher office, because she made the right decision to protect The Constitution, to defend free and fair elections, and to vote for Trump’s impeachment.

Tom Gagnon, Rock Springs

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