I woke up angry Thursday morning. It was a surprise — I didn't think any of the chaos accompanying our swift national decline could upset me anymore. But a mob kicked in the door of my House Wednesday, smashing windows, trashing the furniture, desecrating the halls with a racist-linked flag. That House embodies the Constitution I once swore an oath to support and defend (as did my father before me). That mob was incited by someone who also swore that oath. Those in charge of protecting that House (also oath swearers) apparently had neither the will nor the plans to protect it against a pack of paunchy provocateurs wearing faux survivalist gear.
The miniscule arrest total from Wednesday's event suggests that most of the mob will go home to post selfies celebrating their visit to the Capitol. It's an appropriate way to document how diminished we've become, how leaderless we are. I'm in the age group that grew up with a national self-image later labeled "a shining city on a hill." It's sad to have lived long enough to see that city become the rusty facade of an out-of-business theme park, occupied by savages.
David Wild, Woodway
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Thank you, Bill Whitaker [column, Jan. 8], for saying what we hope all Americans feel. Now, all those complicit with our current president have blood on their hands, and like Lady Macbeth, they will not be able to wash it off. If one kernel of good can come of this horrific act, the photos and videos of Trump and his minions celebrating before his Jan. 6 speech to his supporters, and images of rioters wearing racist shirts and carrying flags with the same sentiment, show America that we still have deep-seated hatred for those of color and certain religions. As a country, we have a lot of work to do. I hope that after the Capitol riot, Vice President Pence will summon the courage to tell our president to leave the office.
Jill Michaels, Waco
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I don’t think anyone actually thought Pete Sessions would ever be an effective representative, other than to serve as a "yes" man to Mr. Trump’s fleeting whims. The certification of Mr. Biden as the next president underscores how disadvantaged the Texas 17th Congressional District will be for the next 24 months.
But now that Mr. Sessions is complicit in the deaths of law enforcement officers by the hands of riotous thugs, he should put aside his narcissistic need to be in the spotlight and resign so that the people of TX-17 can walk away from this episode with at least a shred of dignity.
Robert Cervantes, Waco
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We witnessed an attempt to undermine our democracy when thousands of unpatriotic Americans stormed our nation's Capitol in a failed coup. This was more than an act of domestic terrorism — it was treason, pure and simple.
This treasonous act was perpetrated by President Donald Trump when he and his followers were involved in actions to overthrow our democracy, and all of those who were involved have got to be held accountable.