..and then they came for the rest of us one by one...
I was in Washington D.C. on January 6th, 2021. In fact, having never received any memo or advanced notification of an insurrection, I brought my family. I was ill-prepared, not just for what “happened” there involving .0009% of the actual attendees, but for the fallout from it all.
As I said, I brought my family. A husband who had never even sought out a Trump rally or caravan and 3 young teens ages 17, 15, and 12. We live in New York and had about a 5-hour ride home- Terrified. We had just left what was supposed to be a historical moment and experience for our kids. On the way home, we were able to gather what happened afterward from what we could listen to live-streamed from my iPhone. What we left was not what was being described on any of the live-streams. We reached Maryland, and I finally had cell service (there was NO cell service in D.C. since that morning and the restaurants were all closed). I finally had a moment to get a quick video out on Facebook to let our friends and family know we had gotten out of D.C. and were safe. Looking back, I was visually shell-shocked in that video. The portrayal right away and demonization that this was a “white supremacist” event calling all Trump supporters domestic terrorists and treasonous was shocking. Us? My God. I love this Country. No one could really believe all of this, could they? When I got home that evening, I decided to recount what I saw and had experienced on a live feed on my Facebook page. This would be the first of many suspensions I would receive off of Facebook.
The next day my daughters (17, 15) returned to in-home remote learning as the schools in New York were still closed from the “holiday rise in COVID levels”. My 15-year-old was in class and a conversation was started about “What happened in D.C.”. I received a text from them in our family group chat about what a great conversation they had and how they were able to express the point of view of actually being there and what they experienced that was in such contrast to what the media focus was.
Not even an hour later, I received a call from the school nurse. My children would need to quarantine for being out of state. I explained the rule for out of state travel was 24+ hours, and I was only there 22 hours. I saved the parking receipt to prove it. I even recall mentioning to her what a messed up society we now live in, that I even had the forethought to think to do that. By that evening, all hell had broken loose on social media. My kids and I were depicted as the local “domestic terrorist white supremacist people we know who went to D.C." We were targeted fully. The head of the local PTA was encouraging people to call the FBI. A local high school alumni of just 2 years who was politically involved in the previous Parkland Kids National Walkout Movement in our school posted on Facebook and other social media sites how she had “just found out that this person [ME] had brought her children to D.C.” and conveyed that I was literally so evil that I shouldn’t even bake cookies for the school children. I am adding the screenshot to show the complete ridiculousness of it all. But it was still far-reaching and hyper-local in a somewhat small New York town. The damage was done. And, of course, it spread on social media for my daughters.
It dragged on about 2 weeks, my daughters both refusing to return to the their school buildings. Why would they? They are racist Nazis now and everywhere they turn they are scorned and shunned. For going to D.C.- just for being there. For the crime of just being there, they need to be completely ostracized from society in its entirety. It is the only way this town can be cleansed of the evil we are now considered to be.
I had disputed my banning on Facebook and somehow got a mystery reduction in sentence. After 7 days of not expressing the abuse we were experiencing, I was let loose. I posted the phone calls we got, the screenshots, the postings and accusations and threats of FBI being called, and everything I could to express the onslaught we had experienced. I did end up filing a police report and a report at the school level for the bullying resulting from that in-class discussion.
I lasted about 4 more days on Facebook. I posted an article from a dot-gov website telling people to “load the cannons” and am currently still serving my 3rd Facebook banning/jail sentence for making threats for loading a cannon with a dot-gov website.
So, let’s not lose sight of “being in the middle of a pandemic.” Regardless of where your beliefs lie, the reality is young teenage girls need to be social. Kids in general need to be social with other kids their own ages. We are almost 1 year into these extended lock-downs, and most people, let alone young people, use social media as a primary means of communication. To stop the abuse and bullying my kids were receiving, I had to remove the mechanism. Facebook had already done it for me, but my daughters needed to be unplugged. And so we did; cutting off their last lifeline with anything in the “real world” of what was left in their new world almost 1 year into this pandemic. The isolation deepens.
There really are no words to describe what this experience has done, not just to us but more so to the people --the people who have allowed themselves to become monsters who would do this to other human beings. How can they dehumanize people they know in real life whom they used to sit next to at their kid's marching band competitions and school performances? How can they demand that volunteerism and even baking skills be disallowed because they don’t have the same politics? Why are they so willing to destroy someone because they support a political candidate they disapprove of, or were taught to hate? Hate now cast onto my children and me so they can finally feel some satisfaction of destroying Trump by destroying anyone who supported him.
I really don’t understand what is happening to this country. We “lost”. Why are we the ones being attacked? Whatever happened to good sportsmanship? When one team loses on the field and shake hands and say, "good game, try again next time,"? No, the losing team now must be destroyed and eliminated from society. Scorched earth.
Who are the enemy and aggressors again? First, they came for Trump, and then they came for the rest of us. One by one.