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A judge explains patriotism

     “A federal judge rejected the argument that US Capitol rioters … are being prosecuted for their political views,” CNN reported on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 (read story here).

     She’s right, of course. They’re being prosecuted for illegal acts, not their belief that Trump was robbed of the election, or their “Stop the Steal!” chants, even though they’re wrong on both counts.

     “You called yourself and everyone else patriots, but that’s not patriotism,” Judge Jackson told Capitol rioter Karl Dresch.
     “Patriotism is loyalty to country, loyalty to the Constitution, not loyalty to” a person. She’s right about that, too. Overthrowing your own government isn’t patriotism, and insurrectionists aren’t patriots.
     She called Dresch, 41, a convicted felon (details here) and the son of a late one-term Michigan GOP legislator who was not crazy like his kid or political party (which refused to support him; read his bio here), an “enthusiastic participant” in the rioters’ efforts “to subvert democracy, to stop the will of the people and replace it with the will of the mob.”
     But she only sentenced him to, in effect, time served (i.e., the 6 months he spent in jail awaiting trial). He got off lightly, even though he had “threatened war everywhere if we let this election get stolen,” because he didn’t commit any acts of violence. Clearly, he isn’t being punished for his political views or speech.
     According to the Detroit Metro Times, he “pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of willfully and knowingly demonstrating in a Capitol building. In exchange for his plea, prosecutors dismissed four other counts, including entering restricted grounds, disorderly conduct, and obstructing an official proceeding.” (Read that story here.)
     Far from being persecuted, rioters like Dresch are getting off lightly as a reward for their non-violence. That doesn’t change the fact they attacked our freedom, tried to overthrow our government, and disrespected our right to vote. Calling themselves “patriots” is an insult to real patriots such as the police officers who defended our seat of government and public officials on that awful day.
     The Detroit News reported that firearms were seized from Dresch when he was arrested for the Capitol riot, but he “has not been charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm, punishable by up to 10 years in federal prison” (see story here), even though he could be. He’s getting off extremely easy. The authorities are not throwing the book at him.
     So if someone tries to tell you that the Capitol rioters are being persecuted for their political views, just flash them a knowing smile, say nothing (you can’t persuade them anyway), and go on your way.

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