Aside from a breathless stream of headlines and a few random inputs, I haven’t seen many facts regarding the events of January 6th. Circumstances made things that way for me, and now I’m glad they did, because it set me up for the really important issue: Am I allowed to ask questions about this, or am I not?
Bear in mind that I haven’t voted for or otherwise championed Mr. Trump. (Nor did I support his opponents.) More than that, I really want to know the answers to these questions. Especially given the fallout from January 6th, honest answers to these questions matter a great deal.
So, I’m going to stick my neck out and ask questions about this event that seem pertinent.
Question #1: What was the actual time line?
As I was driving on the 6th, I flipped on the radio and heard Mr. Trump speaking. I was aware that there was going to be a rally in the capitol, and so I listened for a minute or so, just enough to get the tone of it; a rally on the same day electoral votes were counted concerned me.
What I actually heard from Mr. Trump, however, was less than his strongest, and included something like, “I know you’re going to go down there…” combined with “patriotically and peacefully.” Hearing him mention “peacefully” comforted me. (Plus the fact that American conservatives take pride in being peaceful and courteous.)
And so I was rather shocked, not many minutes later, when a friend called and said something about the capitol. I responded along the lines of, “it sounds harmless enough”… whereupon I learned that protesters were already inside the building.
Since then I’ve seen claims that Mr. Trump was a mile away, in the middle of his speech, when the capitol building was being broken into.
So, between my own observations and the claims, I’d like to know what really happened when.
Again, I honestly don’t know. What troubles me is that I haven’t seen the claim refuted, only ignored.
Question #2: Were agents provocateur involved?
One of the random things I came across was a report from Michael Yon, perhaps the most experienced war reporter in the world, claiming BLM and Antifa agents provocateur led the break-in. This is a guy who should be able to tell.
I’ve further seen reports that someone named Sullivan was a known BLM leader, and was at the vanguard of people entering the building.
So, I don’t actually know that BLM and Antifa were involved with this, but I’d very much like to know. And once again, I haven’t seen this question addressed. Perhaps I’ve missed something conclusive on this, but the question deserves to be addressed with facts.
Question #3: Is thinking an election was rigged considered insane?
This is the impression I get from about half of my headline stream: That anyone believing the recent election was rigged is flat-out insane. But for me, that’s a real problem, because I’ve experienced election rigging, personally. On top of that, I’ve known a lot of inside players in my home state, giving me many more reasons to believe in election rigging.
That’s not proof that the November election was rigged, of course, but it’s clearly a reason for me to take seriously the possibility. And if I’m not allowed to ask, I have to wonder why.
As best I can tell, none of the loud voices (news networks, etc.) have analyzed what has been claimed as evidence. Again, I may have missed something, but I simply haven’t seen it. So far as I know, the courts have never examined it (they got rid of the cases on procedural grounds in every case I recall), nor did congress: the “insurrection” interrupted that, after which it was ignored. That sounds very convenient to me, but again, I could have missed a lot.
So again I’d like to know: Is such a question permissible, or will I be punished for asking it?
Question #4: Aside from trespassing and a few broken windows, what harm was done?
So far as I know, the answer is “not much,” though I may have missed something. A lady named Ashli Babbitt was shot and killed, but she was killed by the police, not the protesters. And details about other reported deaths are spotty. So, I think my question is valid.
Several hundred politicians were inconvenienced, of course, but that’s hardly a major issue.
A congressional baseball team being murderously shot up not too long ago was a big deal, but that came and went with almost none of the fanfare and fallout we’ve seen since January 6th.
So again I ask, precisely what harm was done? And I ask especially because I’ve seen words like “sacred” applied to this, and to me that reeks of idolatry and dogma, the opposites of reason and proportion.
Question #5: Where are the civil libertarians?
I’ll admit that this one rather ticks me off. Tens of thousands of people have been ejected from the public square, not because they caused actual harm, but because someone thinks they’re part of an “insurrection.” Bear in mind that almost none of these people were anywhere near Washington, DC on the 6th. All they did was to fall within some algorithm produced by a surveillance capitalism company. (Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
I’ve further heard that people have lost jobs and financing in precisely the same manner: They had nothing to do with the event, but were somehow associated with it. Either that’s a witch hunt or there’s massive and direct evidence against all those people… and it sure doesn’t seem like that’s the case. Since when do we impose penalties for insurrection without a serious finding of fact?
And Ron Paul, for goodness sake? He’s a congenitally polite doctor, now old and retired. Disagree with him all you like, but to eject him from the public square is naked thuggery.
So again, I ask: Where are all the civil libertarians? They’re absent without leave, as best I can tell. Either that or it was always a charade, and their high-sounding rhetoric was just sucker-bait for the rubes.
If These Things Can’t Be Asked…
Here’s where the rubber meets the road: If we cannot ask these questions, confident that we’ll be met with reason and proportion, we’re living in a tyranny.
What appears to be happening is an illogical statement being writ very large. This is the statement:
Some people broke into the capitol and a few windows were broken, therefore our lives are in danger and we must stomp out all evildoers.
Any connection between the first part of that sentence and the second is uncertain and (as best I can tell) unproven. And yet, the responses to January 6th treat it as completely verified.
And so, if these questions are not permissible, we are living in tyranny, and particularly under the tyranny of those who punish the asking.
So many times we see the true importance of things only once we lose them, and this moment has been revelatory in just that way: We can now see why free speech must be held sacrosanct.
Free speech is inherently oppositional to tyranny. It’s the canary in our coal mine. When we see free speech abandoned and punished, we can be certain that tyranny is upon us.
15 thoughts on “Are We Still Allowed To Ask Questions?”
Well said Paul! Again, you have expressed my thought.
I did not even register to vote because I have known for years about vote fraud. I would have voted for Trump. I have noticed many very weird things this year, and I am hoping they do add up to a Plan to restore a Republic and freedom. There are also signs that Trump is just another Deep State operative.
I watched the President’s speech Jan 6, and read all his tweets that day. I have seen at least 6 videos on various aspects of the “riot.”
Timeline Jan 6-7 (EST)
11 am President supposed to speak
12 noon to 1:08 or so–actual speech. Plenty of description of vote fraud, hopes Pence will do the right thing, let’s peacefully go to the Capitol. There are hundreds of thousands of Trump supporters.
About 1: 3 white vans full of sophisticated Antifa people with wall scaling equipment, window breakers, etc. Run up to Capitol barricades, yell, scream, cuss, bash windows. John Sullivan and Ashli Babbitt were at the front, Ashli standing there, 5 or 6 people bashing and breaking the glass doors. A gun points from inside the building and Ashli was shot.
About 1? Pence starts the Electoral college count, strictly by-the-book. Arizona, House objections, senate objections, so the two chambers of Congress are sent to their respective chambers to debate it. They have about 15 minutes before they are interrupted by the rioting, given gas masks (rioters are setting off fire extinguishers, and there is tear gas. Congresscritters are evacuated to secure locations.
Videos show several attacks on the windows, scaling walls, and police letting protestors past barricades and into the building. Several videos exist of the chaos inside that vast building. Plenty of noise and screaming—but at least 100 people look like wide-eyed tourists, staying inside the velvet ropes, walking at a normal pace, and gawking at their nation’s capitol building.
By 3 pm, Patriots (Trump supporters have compared pix of individual rioters with pix of antifa protest rioters. They wore MAGA hats, but otherwise looked distinctly different from the orderly Trump supporters seen everywhere else. This was identified as a false flag attack. It was extremely effective as such—even many pro-Trump sites and posts assume that Trumpers lost their cool.
There was an effort to promote “Stop the Steal” rallies in every state capitol the next weekend, but they were identified as false flag attempts and Trumpers stayed away.
the last I seen the canary was flopping upside down but about to quit flopping.
I am a Political Atheist.
Human Governments never work for the citizens best interests.
Excellent questions and we all certainly should be allowed to ask without punishment.
You hit the nail on the head Paul.
Thank you!!!! I’ve been dismayed at how no one wants truth and think it’s a great idea to censor and silence anyone who questions anything! Our republic is long done. I can’t understand the compliance and the lack of willingness to stand for our freedoms by the vast majority of people.
“I rather have questions that can’t be answered than Answers that can’t be Questioned” -Richard Feyman
The short answer is “Yes, you are still allowed to ask questions.”
But then, after asking a reasonable question, you abuse every decent person, by proceeding to ask many WRONG questions!
Are you a Nazi? Or, even worse, perhaps even a closet Trumpster?
The right questions would be:
“How will we deal with the fascists, the nazis, the tumpsers (including the closet ones, that ask nazi questions)?”
“Should we try to reeducate the trumpsters, or are they irredeemable?”
“Should we cull all whites, or only the cis white men?”
And so on…
But I guess it is too late for you (you disgusting closet trumpster!) to learn and be civil, so…
?! Wrong question? !
Which question do you deem ‘wrong ‘? Your vitriol says more about you than I wish to know.
Hard to tell if this is real, or a parody.
Seriously, if not a parody, you’re actually suggesting that ASKING QUESTIONS is “nazi”?
Brilliant! Also illustrative in all of this is the M19 actual bombing of the Capitol being memory holed. I’ve had to remind more than one of my friends clutching their pearls over January 6th that the Capitol has been the scene of violence before, perpetrated by communists who were apparently trying to assassinate republicans. One of the main players in the event would go on to receive either a pardon or commutation from Bill Clinton.
Yep people forget about that
In a society where we all, and I mean all, cannot ask questions, we are on perilous ground. Twitter and other shutdowns, despite apparent forestalling of violence, by their very nature shut down open discussion. If someone makes public statements we violently disagree with , we should have the intelligence and vigilance to argue cogently against their points. Suppression of others’freedom of speech and opinion is just that- suppression. Do not know details but cancellation of pillow store contracts because of the political opinions of the promoter, is persecution, is it not? The hatred and vitriol swirling on both sides, and fanned by media, is soul-destroying and nation-poisoning. Perhaps “Do unto others as you would have done unto you” should have a corollary:” Say unto/ about others as you would have said unto/ about you” could encourage us all to think carefully before we speak and opt for less hateful and incendiary words to make our statements.
I still don’t know how many peaceful protestors there were, and how many actually “attacked” Capitol Hill. Knowing the two totals seems the least the media could have done.
Civil libertarians have been partisan scammers for decades. Check out this ACLU poster from 1991 (200th anniversary of the BOR). As the OP notes, they left out more than half of the rights in the Bill of Rights (the Second Amendment in particular), and included much later amendments that aren’t even in the Bill of Rights.
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