Memory lane can be one scary slog.
CNN walked me back down Watergate-memory lane; John Dean was the tour guide — to events that feel like yesterday, but happened a half-century ago!
I wonder how many people born after 1973 understand what happened.
People have said, about Watergate, the cover-up was worse than the crime. On this backward glance, I saw that, no, the crimes necessitating the cover-up were serious.
Others disagree — seeing what President Nixon did as understandable, even excusable.
But this recent stroll on memory shows why people who will not read history make costly mistakes.
See this quote from former President Gerald R. Ford:
The political lesson of Watergate is this: Never again must America allow an arrogant, elite guard of political adolescents to by-pass the regular party organization and dictate the terms of a national election.
Nope— neither party heeded that advice over recent decades.
Now C-Span is taking me back to the events of January 6,2021, covering the assault on the U.S. Capitol.
Why bother when so much refuse is hitting the fan?
Because I saw the LIVE telecast unfold on January 6 on CSpan that showed:
- A gallows erected on the grounds of the US Capitol;
- A window shattered and an angry mob of AMERICANS threatening other Americans inside the Capitol;
- The confederate battle flag carried into the US Capitol; and
- The cross of Christ was lifted high in the midst of an angry mob.
These January 6 hearings’ answers are as painful to see and hear as the Watergate hearings. Truly understanding how people gain and wield power is like seeing sausage made. (Otto Van Bismarck)
However, what I heard some news from the hearing that focused on Mr. Pence, that several reports did not mention:
- On the morning of January 6, Mr. Pence prayed before he assumed his duties; Greg Jacob, his counsel; prayed and later, while seeking refuge that day, read Daniel 6 in the midst of that terror- filled day;
- At the end of the certification of votes, Mr. Pence’s chief of staff gave Mr. Pence a bible verse, 2 Timothy 4:7:
- “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”
- A retired federal judge who testified, Judge J. Michael Luttig, who opposed the overturning of the election. He, too, prayed with his wife before testifying in the hearing. And Congressman Pete Aguilar, noted the testimony of prayer and Bible reading that sustained the three men.
On both these painful jaunts down memory lane, I am thankful the prophet Daniel still shows leaders how to lead, and I am glad Mike Pence prayed and asked for direction from Judge Luttig on his duty as Vice-President and President of the Senate. I am glad, too, that many people in the Trump administration spoke truth to power.
These two walks down memory lane are illuminated by a reminder from Billy Graham