Eyes Wide Open…

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“When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.” Maya Angelou

I just can’t believe what my eyes have seen tonight said Episcopal bishop Mariann Budde of St John’s Episcopal Church. The Washington Post reported: She excoriated the president for standing in front of the church — its windows boarded up with plywood — holding up a Bible, which Budde said “declares that God is love.” Many of us watched in disbelief as the events in Lafayette Square unfolded from the perspective of our homes last evening.

Decisions made under the auspices of Trump and his administration yesterday were to bring in the military to control the demonstrators outside the White House.  A caravan of National Guard troops flooded the area. A fortress around the White House formed. For the protection of the White House? The President?  Peaceful protestors were occupying Lafayette Square.  The threat of violence was yet another diversionary tactic of this administration allowing Trump to instead promote his agenda…Donald J. Trump. Historically the White House has stood for freedom and democracy. It is a symbol of the American people and not the residence of a dictator.

A disheveled and unmasked Attorney General William Barr with hands in his pockets appeared amongst the troops. Barr encouraged the use of force as a way to “dominate the streets.” Trump’s desire to employ the Insurrection Act of 1807 was clearly stated in his speech in the Rose Garden while simultaneously peaceful protestors were being removed from the area. Trump once again asserts an authority he doesn’t know how to use:

: To do that, the president would need to invoke what’s known as the Insurrection Act of 1807. The original text of the act, which has been amended several times since it was first passed, reads as follows:

An Act authorizing the employment of the land and naval forces of the United States, in cases of insurrections

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That in all cases of insurrection, or obstruction to the laws, either of the United States, or of any individual state or territory, where it is lawful for the President of the United States to call forth the militia for the purpose of suppressing such insurrection, or of causing the laws to be duly executed, it shall be lawful for him to employ, for the same purposes, such part of the land or naval force of the United States, as shall be judged necessary, having first observed all the pre-requisites of the law in that respect.

APPROVED, March 3, 1807.

The secret service and park police nearly a half hour before curfew began to move the peaceful protestors by using force and tear gas. All for Trump’s photo-op opportunity. POTUS was angry about the reports of his being relocated to a bunker for safety days before. So, he walked to St John’s Church as the path was cleared of peaceful protestors for a photo-op to counter reports of him sheltering in the White House bunker?  We paid for that re-election stunt. Taxpayer’s paid for our fellow Americans to be pushed and gassed so this petulant and dangerous child could walk across the street to create opportunity for himself in front of a house of worship.  Americans continue to pay under this administration…financially and with our lives.

A belligerent, arrogant and defiant Trump awkwardly held the Bible in his right hand. Seemingly a foreign object. The Bible is a sacred text revealing the word of God for many. As he elevated the Bible, I was hoping Zeus would hurl a lightning bolt showing his displeasure with this godlike portrayal. I am just waiting for Trump to claim that he has authored the Bible.  I will agree that he is portrayed in the Bible as Judas. Trump systematically betrays the American people at any and every opportunity. Hoping November 3rd, 2020 will mark our country’s resurrection 

We cannot lose sight of what people are protesting for. The message and the voices must be heard. Equality for all must be our reality. We need and are deserving of leadership that will positively navigate our country through this movement, this pandemic and this critical time in our country so we can be the America we are all proud of. 

“Everything he has said and done is to inflame violence,” Budde of the president. “We need moral leadership, and he’s done everything to divide us.”

Vote November 3, 2020

Author: Elizabeth Ricketson

A graduate of Providence College with a BA in English, Elizabeth Ricketson has always had a love of literature and the fine arts. Elizabeth’s essays focus on life experiences and life in Vermont.

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