[Thoughts for today from New York Times writer Charles M. Blow, 1/22/2021, Abridged]
“I had many feelings as I observed the Inauguration, a pageant of customs. The first was the feeling of having—remarkably and improbably—survived a calamity, like stumbling out of a wrecked car and frantically checking my body for injuries.
Trump taught us, the hard way, that what we took for granted as inviolable, was, in fact, largely tradition. And traditions are not laws…
There is a feeling of deep patriotism and awe for the country itself. Trump did everything he could to break this country, but, in the end, America remains. Biden was sworn in at the Capitol that Trump’s insurrectionist supporters had stormed two weeks before.
But then there are also the lingering feelings of disappointment, betrayal and loss of faith.
How is it possible that enough Americans voted for Trump in the first place, sending him to the White House? Donald Trump is a racist and a white supremacist. And yet millions of Americans either agreed with his views or were willing to abide them. I know that there will be those who warn that I should just let this go, that holding onto it is “divisive.
To them, I say, “Hell no!”
There must be acknowledgement and accountability. There must be contrition and repentance. It is not enough to simply let the co-conspirators and abettors of a white supremacist president quiet down and cool off, biding their time, waiting for the next opportunity for their riotousness and wrath to be unfurled and unleashed.
There are many transgressions of the Trump presidency. Some, like the mishandling of the pandemic, have even been far more deadly than the handling of migrant families at the border. But there is something particularly cruel and inhumane about what Trump did to those children in the name of the United States government.
I will never forget that. And I will never forget that tens of millions of Americans were willing to accept that and give Trump a pass on it.
I am happy that the Trump administration is now behind us and a new, more normal one is before us, but my relief still mingles with my rage.”