It’s the first word that came to mind Wednesday, the day after Georgians voted to flip the U.S. Senate for the Democrats.
I couldn’t believe Jon Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock prevailed as victors in their respective runoffs. I don’t see eye to eye with many of their views, and neither received a vote from me.
But to be clear, my source of shame was not found in Georgia. Rather, it was found in Washington as people claiming to be pro-Trump supporters — the same people who claimed to be proponents of “law and order” and peaceful protests only — invaded the Capitol, terrorizing our representatives inside.
Watching the live stream on Fox News, CNN and media outlets, I was appalled at the sight of such radical actions of my fellow Republicans. Protesters broke windows and incited violence by taking up arms and raiding the numerous chambers. As of Friday, five people were reportedly killed as result of the invasion. One was a Capitol Police officer.
What I — we — watched was not America.
No, it was more reminiscent of a third-world country engaging in civil war. To paraphrase President George W. Bush’s remarks, the heartbreaking scenes that unfolded Wednesday were not those of a Democratic Republic, but rather a banana republic. And all because the protesters didn’t agree with the presidential election results and opposed Congress’ eventual certification.
It was revolting and unjustifiable.
I am 100% behind people standing up for what they believe in, but I’ll never encourage or condone the actions the world witnessed Wednesday. I didn’t support similar behavior in the summer when riots broke out over police brutality and racial injustice, and I won’t support such riotous behavior now. Destroying property, looting businesses and inciting violence is unacceptable, no matter the issue at hand.
I fear for our country’s future, and not because of who we elect to lead it, but because of the state of its people.
Our country is more divided than it has ever been before, and while I know that’s a statement we’ve heard over and over again, it’s also never been more true.
In the Bible, Jesus Christ is recorded as saying, “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand.”
What will it take for us to come back together? What will it take for our nation’s people to show love and respect to everyone, no matter their race, religion or creed? What will it take for us to live out our namesake as the United States of America?
Until we find an answer, I fear this nation we once knew — a land of peace and civility — is no more.
Taylor Beck is editor and publisher of The Covington News. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.