My message to those who are “traumatized” by January 6

Over the past year, numerous people have stated that they are “traumatized” by the protest that took place in Washington, D.C. on January 6, 2021. Social media posts like the below (via @BeingLibertarian) abound. I find it to be incomprehensible, unreasonable, and unjustifiable for anyone to react this way to a futile protest against the installation of an authoritarian government. 

In reality, the installation of Biden’s authoritarian government, not the protest against it, is a true reason to be in shock, crying, throwing up, and traumatized.

The people who claim to be “traumatized” by the January 6 protest are people who have gotten their way on essentially everything over the past two years. They have nothing to be traumatized about, nothing to be shocked about, nothing to be in tears about, nothing to throw up about, and nothing to be upset about.

Here is my message to anyone who is upset about the January 6 protest:

Every name, every flag, and every holiday that you dislike has been removed, and every statue that you dislike has been destroyed. The Constitution has been shredded and fundamental rights trampled in order to fulfill your demand for complete safety from a virus. Also due to your demands for safety, the electoral system was changed in a way that favored your preferred candidate. Because of those changes, the totalitarian dictator that you support became the winner of the presidential election.

After all this, you are in shock, crying, and throwing up because some protesters entered the Capitol building? You are traumatized and to this day haven’t recovered? Really?

To those traumatized by the events of January 6, I ask you to attempt an exercise in perspective-taking. I ask you, how the heck do you think people on the other side of the political spectrum feel? How do you think we have felt over the past two years, as your side has gotten its way on essentially every policy issue and we have gotten our way on nothing? How do you think we felt learning that Biden was declared the winner of the election, and seeing an endless stream of your nauseating posts taunting and insulting us and crowing with vicious joy about the narrow victory? How do you think we feel about the all-out war that the Biden administration has relentlessly waged against our fundamental rights? 

Turning to an issue that is very personal to me… how do you think I feel about the fact that every statue, place name, flag, and holiday that represents my identity and my values has been obliterated? How do you think I feel given that my interest in history is the most important thing in my life? How do you think I feel knowing that I now have no choice but to live the rest of my days in a society in which everything I love has been erased? How do you think I have felt over the past two years as I have watched everything that makes my life worth living be destroyed?

I was shocked and traumatized when I found out that the Christopher Columbus statue that I used to walk past every day had been brutally beheaded. I have cried and felt sick to my stomach more times than I can count seeing image after image of statues representing my values and my identity being smashed to pieces, set on fire, cruelly hacked with sledgehammers, and lynched from streetlights.

These are the things that are truly traumatic. Along with those who share my views, I am a person who can truly say, after nearly two years of being ridiculed and insulted, having my rights violated, and watching the people I love and admire being smashed to pieces in statue form, that I have not recovered.

You have gotten your way on essentially 100% of policy issues, violating people’s rights and destroying what makes their lives worth living in the process. The few people who had the audacity to protest against all this were immediately and ceaselessly condemned, attacked, and arrested by the hundreds for the crime of expressing political dissent. But apparently that still isn’t enough for you. You seem to believe that you have the right to a world in which every single person shares your viewpoint, a world in which everyone willingly sacrifices their rights and freedoms for safety, a world in which everyone is content to see irreplaceable works of art viciously destroyed. The mere existence of people with dissenting views causes you to be in shock, crying, and throwing up. The fact that people actually had the guts to stand up to you for once is enough to make you feel traumatized and like you will never recover.

To say that this is a ridiculous reaction is an understatement. Anyone who claims to be traumatized by the January 6 protest is an intolerant bully with no sense of fairness, logic, or justice and no regard for the rights or perspectives of other people.