Is This America?

Linda Sharp
7 min readFeb 10, 2021

It should be mandatory viewing. It should be.

The impeachment hearings should be standing room only, hear-a-pin-drop, hanging-on-every-word viewing for every citizen of this country. Hell, of this world. Yes, world. The world has been held hostage by the Trump circus just as much as this country has been for four+ years. The impact of his lack of intellect, global view, understanding of diplomacy and world events has affected people everywhere.

Besides that obvious involvement and what they, too, have at stake, the sad fact is that we deserve to have our shit stained laundry on display for all to see.

This morning, Congressman Jamie Raskin, a man who lost his son less than a month ago, stood before the body politic fighting for this nation, for our Constitution, for basic right to win out over blatant wrong. And he asked a simple question: Is this America?

The sad answer is yes.

January 6, 2021, we all watched in horror as the matches were finally struck and a tidal wave of gas was poured by Trump, igniting the inferno of rage in his supporters’ minds, an inferno that quickly spread down the streets to the perimeter of the Capital building. We were open mouthed as his insurrectionist horde swept up the steps of the Capital and forced their way in. We held our breath as reports trickled in of our representatives having been secreted away just moments before the inner sanctums of our democracy were breached. And because these cretins were so full of certitude — that they were so right and righteous in their actions, we saw in real time as they proudly posted their assaults on Twitter, Parler, Instagram, Facebook, etc.

Bear in mind, we were not surprised. Just as Trump’s ignorant cultists had been primed for months, for years, to perform these actions, so too, had we been primed to understand that violence was not just a possibility. It was an inevitability.

For years we watched as his supporters transformed into what they have long professed to disdain. They were becoming terrorists, they were becoming a homegrown ISIS. They were becoming, as they have mockingly been called, Y’all Qaida, complete with weaponry, pick up truck parades, menacing flags, progressively louder threats, and acts of violence planned and meted out.

Pay close attention to those pictures. There has been only one thing that separates them. Y’all Qaida had not planted IEDs, kidnapped journalists or officials, had not beheaded, murdered anyone — YET. YET has been the only thing that separated Trump’s mob from the marauding terrorists abroad.

And then came January 6th.

They planted bombs at the RNC and DNC. The terror they inflicted included the murder of a police officer. Over 140 officers were injured that day. Injuries included brain damage, concussions from blows to the head, cracked ribs, stabbing injuries, a gouged out eye, smashed spinal discs, swollen ankles and wrists, bruised arms and legs, and irritated lungs from bear and pepper spray.

Yes, Congressman Raskin, this is America.

From our founding, we have always been an imperfect union with the ideal of striving towards being a more perfect union. We were never founded for all, but for some. And because of that, a founding under which people owned people, and those owned were not even considered to be full human beings, the trickle down economy of those acts, those emotions have never gone away. Slavery, ownership, less thans, the other — those notions have stained everything they touched, from generation to generation.

This nation has, at times, made strides. Strides born of the blood of those who stood up to fight. Strides made on the backs of those who gave their lives that those who came after would have an easier more equitable life moving forward. Slaves were emancipated. Women won the right to vote. Desegregation came to be. Marriage equality was signed into law. Advancements of great import, all. Yet for every step forward, there have always been those whose fortunes are tied to maintaining racism, inequality, danger for anyone not like them.

Let’s be very honest about what that means — danger for anyone NOT WHITE.

Look at the photos, the videos, the angry faces from January 6. With very rare exception, they are white. They are white cowards emboldened by a white coward spray painted orange, who dog whistled, who telegraphed, who outright promised to help them keep their white upper hand.

This is America.

This is what we are fighting. This is what we have always been fighting. This is what we will continue to be fighting long into the future. That is the battle we will hand to our children. That is the base of what the impeachment managers are fighting today.

White, angry, hellbent-on-their-supremacy citizens. Racists who believe themselves more worthy based on a single facet of their being — their skin color. That magical white cloaking device that allows them to move through life easily, walking into stores without immediately being surveilled, openly carrying weapons down the street — brazenly daring anyone to question their rights, storming into state Capital buildings with said weapons and having no repercussions come their way. White skin that made them believe they could assault the nation’s Capital building on January 6th, terrorizing, vandalizing, chanting “Hang Mike Pence!”, shouting “Where’s Nancy?”, smearing their shit on the walls, looting, stealing, assaulting the very Blue Lives they claim to revere so much.

And white skin that made them believe they could just return to their hotels, take their flights home, go back about their lives with absolutely zero repercussions for their choices, their crimes. These people are shocked as the FBI has tracked them down, arrested them, put them in jail cells. Yet they still maintain their belief in their whiteness as some Get Out Of Accountability Free card, asking courts to allow them to travel abroad for retreats and weddings. That whiteness being honored and reinforced as Trump judges grant them their requests.

Yes, this IS America.

And it is fucked. It is backwards, upside down, inside out, fucked without lube from every angle, in every orifice, WRONG.

The evidence is clear. Trump invested months in the run up to the election insuring his followers bought into a narrative that he could not possibly lose, that THEY could not possibly lose, unless the election was rigged, stolen from him, from them. Tweet after tweet, TV appearance after TV appearance, rally after rally he beat that into their easily molded heads. And when it came to pass that over 7 million more people voted to kick his ass to the curb than to allow him to stain the White House sheets any longer, they were primed and in place for the next level of the con.

Action. Violence on his behalf. A coup attempt. An insurrection that would result in the deaths of his “enemies”, the complete destruction of the election process, and the continuation of a reign of terror that benefitted Donald Trump and his horde.

They descended on DC because he called them there. They were financed by his minions, his wealthy cronies. They came with weapons, wrapped in Trump flags, wearing gas masks, carrying zip cuffs. They came with plans, plots, targets. They erected a fucking gallows.

The only surprise to come out of that day is that more blood was not shed, more lives were not lost.

That is what this impeachment trial is about. And it should be mandatory viewing, all the evidence. Every Tweet, every incendiary speech, every video clip of the attack, the blood, the terror. Every citizen should be required to watch it all. Because this is America and we do not deserve the option to look away for one more second.

Our reckoning is here.

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Linda Sharp

Author, columnist, blogger. Don’t Get Me Started and Transparent Trans Parent blogs