False Equivalence 101
There is a false equivalence in argument making its rounds on social media over what happened last summer during the Black Lives Matter protests and the terrorist attack on the capitol last week. The protest in front of the Whitehouse was a reaction over the killing of George Floyd, et al. – the riot turned assault on the capitol building was the reaction to Donald J. Trump losing the election and the Georgia state run-off election where Senator-elect Raphael Warnock and Senator-elect Jon Ossoff were victorious in their bid for the U.S. Senate, of which both were Democrats and which gave the Democrats majority in the Senate.
There were no trappings or indications of a planned take over of the Whitehouse. It was by all appearances initially a protest; there were in the terrorist attack of Congress on January 6.
The Whitehouse: The protests itself was initially peaceful yet raucous and within the bounds & fringes of the permits granted, and law .. until Trump decided to deploy law enforcement (tear gas, rubber bullets, etc) and in force to clear a path for him to a St. John’s Church so he can hold up a bible and make a statement for a propagandist photo opportunity. Some took the opportunity to behave violently as night & darkness fell.
The Capitol Building: The initial protest, which by all accounts appeared peaceful turned violent and of which was incited by Trump and members of congress to take the gathering to another reprehensible level; storming the capitol building and seeking out legislators who the terrorist deemed ‘traitors.’
“Words have consequences“:
“Let’s have trial by combat!”
[We are] “taking down names and kicking ass!”
“We fight like hell and if you don’t fight like hell, you’re not going to have a country anymore.”
— To be continued & updated
Abstract: This argument between these two tragic events can only be equivalent in that people, citizens were protesting – the attempted take over of a government was not the matter in the #BLM protests over the killing of Black Americans – the other was by a predominately white gathering of protesters turned into a terrorist attack over Donald Trump’s lie that the last general election was fraudulent and that the election was “stolen” from him.
- Posted in: American Politics