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The Trial of Thousands Who Participated in the Vote-Counting Day Riot Is Not Practical

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Former Marine Michael Joseph Foy at the Capitol Insurrection
Former Marine Michael Joseph Foy at the Capitol Insurrection
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Wes Morgan, one of the veterans who commented on the story about a former Marine who committed violence during the Vote-Counting Day Riot, said this in answer to another commenter who declared he was all right with probation and suspended sentences for some of the rioters:

"If they plead guilty to at least one FELONY (CAPS his) count, fine.

I don't want a single one of them to get off with a misdemeanor plea deal."

Well, that's just not practical; the courts would be swamped if all of the estimated 800 to 1000 people who were inside the Capitol were charged with some or all of the felony counts certain individuals like this Foy Boy are being charged with. And every one of them would be entitled to go before a jury, to say nothing of the thousands outside, if they could all be identified and hit with conspiracy charges.

There are three classes of people involved in the Vote-Counting Day Riot: first, the hard-core white-supremacists and militia folks who are most likely to take up arms (the Proud Boys have now disavowed Trump); second, a batch of conspiracy-theory-believing yahoos, QAnoners and a wide variety of other conspiracy-believers, and mentally unbalanced persons; and third, an even larger bunch of very young MAGA-hatted people, probably students most of them, who were at their first political action, and who before that day had never given prior thought to being part of what the harder-core rightwing radicals ended up doing, but were incited to do whatever they did by the uniformly inflammatory rhetoric of the speakers at the rally before the riot.

The first group were almost completely dissuaded from taking any action at all-- much less armed action-- on Inauguration Day, as well as the other dates on which they threatened a "Million Man Militia March," by the massive deployment of National Guardsmen, not just in DC but also in states like Michigan and Georgia. I find it improbable that they have the capability of scoring any victories against the government if they should try to fight it head-on, because besides the uselessness of fighting Cobra attack helicopters and tanks with semiautomatic rifles, there is very little way to keep any plotting like that silent in 2021.

No matter how encrypted they may think their organizing commo is, the cyberspooks almost surely will know about it from early on. That doesn't guarantee that they-- we-- will act in the best interests of the People-- it didn't happen at Waco or Oklahoma City-- but we may hope that the countenance and focus of the new Administration will continue to be consistent about controlling or resisting White Supremacy, or any group threatening or doing violence full of "people with military background," like the oath-breaker in this story.

The QAnoners are already fading away, disillusioned by the ending of their delusions of conspiracy. Some may find other conspiracy theories to rally around, but I think the two QAnon congresswomen who were elected-- Boebert and Greene-- are going to be one-term Reps, and that will be as close as that conspiracy theory will ever get to having an impact on US politics.

As far as the other thousands of people there, who didn't really take part in the violence, especially the youngest ones (and I saw at least two visibly less-than-teenage children involved), they at least will have read or heard somewhere that they had been part of an assault on democracy itself, and their shame from that means we won't hear from them again. They may even become better people!

It just would be too difficult to indict and try that many people on multiple charges, even if all of them could be positively identified. And besides that, the Biden Administration has platefuls of more important work to do.

American democracy was dented by the insurrection. But it has survived, and we may thank men and women of probity in both Parties, as well as the Judicial branch, including some of Trump's own judicial appointments, for doing their duty to make it so.

(Article changed on January 24, 2021 at 23:41)

(Article changed on January 24, 2021 at 23:42)

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William P. Homans Social Media Pages: Facebook Page       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

My name is William Perkins Homans the third, but probably more people know me as the bluesman (and artist) Watermelon Slim.

I've been in the fight against war, fascism, injustice and inhumanity for 47 years. I was at MayDay, 1971, (more...)

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