In December 2019, I wrote Sen. Mike Braun regarding the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. I asked him to keep an open mind.
My expectation was that Braun would respond with a generic assurance. Instead, I received a letter in which he stated he had already decided the proceedings were politically motivated and without merit. Given that senators are jurors in proceedings regarding a president, this position demonstrated Braun was violating one of the most basic tenets of our legal system.
That was not the most distressing part of Braun's letter. He continued: “I was elected by the people of Indiana to support President Trump in his efforts to change business as usual in Washington, D.C. That is what I intend to continue to do as your United States Senator.” In that response, Braun openly admits that his loyalty is to an individual rather than the Constitution, a position consistent with those who believe in anti-democratic forms of government.
As such, he is complicit in everything that has happened regarding the Trump presidency since the conclusion of the impeachment proceedings. The fact that he intended to vote against the certification of electoral votes in favor of President-elect Joe Biden provides ample evidence that he continues to support Trump's attacks on the Constitution and the democratic process.
Given the recent events at the Capitol, Braun must pay the price for being a Trump enabler. One would hope he would have the decency to acknowledge his complicity in what occurred on Jan. 6, and that he will respond by resigning from the Senate.
Carol Young Lindquist
'White privilege gone amok'
I am still processing the riot incited by Donald Trump, and a description of the disgraceful event that came immediately to my mind was “white privilege gone amok.”
There would not have been enough space in area hospitals, jails or maybe even morgues had people of color behaved in that same manner.
Equal justice on parade ...
Not actions of protesters
The Journal Gazette's headline on the top of the Jan. 7 front page is a disappointing understatement of the situation. Calling the participants “protesters” gives their actions credibility. As was correctly described in the body of the article, the participants were a mob and their actions were a riot.
They may have been demonstrators and protesters when they were listening to Donald Trump fire them up. They stopped being protesters and became a mob when they stormed the Capitol. Our President-elect called them domestic terrorists.
They do not deserve to be called protesters. As someone who believes in peaceful protest, I am insulted!
Robert J. Beatty
Congress completes mission
Sen. Mike Braun, Rep. Jim Banks and colleagues who challenged the results of the electoral votes bear responsibility and shame for the riotous actions, deaths and damage at the Capitol on Jan. 6 Their complicity with Donald Trump gave license to the rioters who perpetrated violence against people, destruction of property and disregard of law.
Trump lit the fuse that led to the riot, but it was the likes of Braun and Banks who, while publicly promoting and supporting Trump's baseless claims, carried the gunpowder for the explosion. Their actions, comments and failure to accept the votes of the citizens of these United States and the certified results of the election and the rulings of the courts produced this shameful assault on our democratic institutions.
It was with deep sadness and embarrassment that we watched this breakdown of societal norms. The United Sates, democracy, degraded at home and in the eyes of the world. I weep – but I also rejoice that Congress reconvened, completed its obligation to count the electoral votes and declare Joe Biden the winner.
Start arrests at the top
Disgraceful, shameful, unlawful – how else can you describe the events in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6.
Is this really happening in America? Did you ever think you would see the day when Americans would storm the U.S. Capitol, emboldened by the words of the president?
There is no excuse for anyone supporting this unstable man. As a retired teacher, I have been critical of his antics for some time. I would never tolerate this behavior from my students. Why does anyone accept this from the president of the United States?
Rep. Jim Banks said after Wednesday's debacle: “Peaceful protesting is acceptable but what happened at the US Capitol is unacceptable and un-American. Those portraying lawlessness and violence must be arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.” If this is true, we need to start with the source, Donald Trump, who fanned the flames of conspiracy and undermined our democratic principles by encouraging protests.