Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Honor and Dishonor at the Capitol

The remains of Officer Brian Sicknick, the Capitol Police officer who was killed, trying to protect the Capitol from the Trump mob four weeks ago on January 6, are "lying in honor" in the Capitol Rotunda today, prior to his interment at Arlington National Cemetery. (Officer Sicknick had joined the Capitol Police in 2008 after serving in the New Jersey Air National Guard and was 42 when he was killed.) “The U.S. Congress is united in grief, gratitude and solemn appreciation for the service and sacrifice of Officer Brian Sicknick,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said in their joint statement. 

Meanwhile, in the wake of January 6, Congress continues to remain dishonorably disunited when it comes to what to do about its problem members. Apparently, some House Republicans would like to oust Wyoming Representative Liz Cheney from her leadership position in the House Republican Caucus because of her vote (along with nine other Republicans) to impeach President Trump for his role in inciting the mob that assaulted the Capitol on January 6 in the very same event that got Officer Sicknick killed.

Even worse, so far at least, there appears little likelihood that the House Republicans  will seriously challenge the truly problematic members of their caucus, whose offenses against congressional civility and ordinary common decency are by now known widely both in Congress and around the country.

The contrast could not be more clear - between the honorable life and death of a Capitol Police Officer and the dishonorable behavior of certain members, between the honorable congressional response to the former and the (thus far) dishonorable response to the latter.


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