Hearts of Darkness

Published: July 8, 2022

By Jim Lichtman
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“It was written I should be loyal to the nightmare of my choice.”–Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness

“You back-stabbing son of a bitch. You go against Trump y’all known, y’all mother are sitting up there lying like a damn dog.”

“You’re going to swing for f***ing treason, you communist f***.”

And I’m guessing that these are only a small example of the messages received by both Adam Kinzinger, and Liz Cheney, his Republican colleague from Wyoming, since they were appointed to the House committee investigating the January 6 insurrection.

This is how bad it’s gotten.

For some, we’re not Americans with different political views but sworn enemies.

Here’s a tweet sent out by House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy on January 8 in reaction to the Capitol attack.

“As the violent mob descended on the Capitol, Officer Brian Sicknick was valiantly protecting more than the building and the people inside—he was protecting Americans’ way of life. Congress will provide the full resources to bring perpetrators of Wednesday’s attack to justice.”

At a press conference on June 9, 2022, commenting on the upcoming hearings, “McCarthy was asked five times whether President Biden’s win in the 2020 election was legitimate,” The Washington Post reported. “Each time, he declined to answer — saying merely that Biden is the president, while not addressing the ‘legitimate’ part — and claiming he had answered the question.

“He was also asked whether the Jan. 6 Capitol riot was an ‘insurrection,’ and he again punted, saying merely that it was ‘wrong.’

“Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) once repeatedly labeled it a ‘terrorist’ attack but backed off that in the face of pressure from Fox News’s Tucker Carlson.

“Republicans initially condemned the Capitol riot in no uncertain terms but soon rallied to the causes of those arrested for taking part, likening them to political prisoners. They also muddied the waters by citing ‘legitimate political discourse.’

The reckless hypocrisy shown by some elected officials in Washington is beyond appalling, it’s unconscionable.

History will record this as one of the darkest times in American history by a political party that cares more about being re-elected and the power that goes with it than standing by the facts that took place at a location where they were hiding from rioters whose stated purpose was to stop the certification and “hang” the vice president.

Months before the hearings began, Kinzinger said, “It leaves me sad about what the party has become. This is a party that always attracted me for the truth-tellingness, the kind of realism and the American strength aspect of foreign policy, the not playing into people’s emotions on the role of the federal government, the saying what needs to be said when it gets too big, etc. That’s been lost. It’s now a party that is profiting on populism, and that has one focus: raising money. It’s a disappointing moment.”

“What has changed,” Kinzinger continued, “is the use of conspiracy, the absolute lack of courage to call it out, the fear that permeates leaders of the Republican Party against a man [Trump] that is basically insane. You know, sending out press releases from Mar-a-Lago.

“It’s unrecognizable, and it’s sad because the Republican Party will exist, and it’s a major political party in the United States. We need conservative voices out there as well.”

Adam Kinzinger is one of only ten House republicans to have voted for the impeachment of the president after the insurrection.

“We have to continue to fight for the soul of [America] because just as it was corrupted over time, it can be fixed over time,” Kinzinger added. “But the bottom line of it is that we’re in a moment where truth doesn’t matter, and this party will be around for a while. It’s depressing to think that’s where we are with it.”

What will it take for Trump supporters to wake-up from the nightmare dividing the country?

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