Many progressives, especially those in Congress and the media, see the riot at the Capitol on Jan. 6 as an insurrection, a coup attempt or sedition and are calling for the punishment of President Donald Trump and all those who supported/enabled him. Many are calling for more censorship by the huge hi-tech companies and new laws to restrain those who threaten the establishment.
While those emotions are justified, if we care about this nation and its future, we have to think carefully about the consequences of our words and actions. This country has the potential to devolve into a Hatfield vs. McCoy feud between the right and left. Such a conflict would be disastrous for the republic. It would be disastrous for the planet, and it would be disastrous for all of us who live here.
Instead, Democrats need to lift working Americans out of the despair that has driven so many to latch onto conspiracy theories and follow authoritarian leaders. Fix the election system. Restructure trade deals to benefit all Americans, not just the big corporations. Institute an industrial policy to create well-paying jobs in industries we need. Reform the tax system to make the wealthy pay their fair share. Pass a minimum wage bill, $15 per hour now and indexed to inflation. Bail out small businesses hurt or destroyed by the pandemic. Close our overseas military bases and restore relations with all nations on the basis of mutual respect.
Failure will bring disaster to the nation.