J6 Mastermind gets Stiff Sentence, but What About J20?

Printouts from two stories. Politico dated 9/5/23 and NBC News datred 7/16/18. (Photo by Lynn Woolley for WBDaily)

As a practicing advocate of “whataboutism,” may I call your attention to a jail sentence handed down in regard to the January 6 Capitol Riot, known to CNN viewers as “The Insurrection.”

The national leader of The Proud Boys, Enrique Tarrio, was sentenced to 22 years in prison, for being the mastermind behind a conspiracy to overturn the 2020 election.

Well, do the crime, do the time.  But wait. 

Back in 2018, prosecutors got no convictions against those participating in violent protests against Donald Trump during his inauguration.

The rioters broke store windows and set a parked limousine on fire.  We could call that little insurrection J20.

Random Samplings is a service of the Texas Public Policy Foundation at TexasPolicy.com.

They were serious about their hatred for Trump. 

They had been assured that Hillary Clinton had a 95 percent chance of winning the election, and they could not contain their disappointment.  So, what’s the difference in the two “insurrections?”

First, the Trump inauguration rioters did not enter the Capitol. 

Note that if you sit in Nancy Pelosi’s chair and put your feet on her desk, there will be hell to pay.  Congress gets far madder when someone breaks a window in the Capitol that when it’s done to private property.

Second, the anti-Trump demonstrators were leftists. 

Even with Trump in office, the career prosecutors at DOJ could not, or would not get convictions.  The first trial ended up with acquittals for all six defendants.  A second trial for four people ended with acquittals on most charges and a hung jury on the rest.

Around July 5th, 2018, federal prosecutors dropped the charges against 39 other rioters, in spite of how violent the protests were.

Third, it’s partly about how you dress when you attend a nice riot in Washington, D.C. 

The J6 rioters entered the Capitol dressed as themselves.  But the rioters against trump were careful to wear similar black clothing, and covered their faces.  So, they were hard to identify.  Smart.

Fourth, the left circled the wagons around the J20 rioters in a way that the Right would never do. 

Lots of conservatives have come out against the Capitol Riot, with me being one of them.  I believe in the right of peaceful protest, but not the right to break things or harm people.

On the Left, a coordinated “grassroots” support campaign emerged to offer free lodging and legal coordination for the defendants.  Dylan Petrohilos, one of the rioters, declared victory, and said the solidary on the left paid off.

Fifth, both these riots took place in Washington, D.C. 

Juries there don’t just lean left, they sway left.  If Donald Trump is tried there, he will be convicted.  There’s no guess about it.  So, if you rioted at the Capitol, that’s bad, but if you rioted against Trump, you must have the book thrown at you.

As a whataboutist, I believe both of these riots, as well as those that occurred nationwide during the summer of 2020 should have been pursued with equal fervor. 

But they were not and that’s sad.  I’m tired of people throwing rocks, starting fires, and tearing up other people’s stuff and getting away with it.

Lynn Woolley is a Texas-based author, broadcaster, and songwriter.  Follow his podcast at https://www.PlanetLogic.us.  Check out his author’s page at https://www.Amazon.com/author/lynnwoolley.  Order books direct from Lynn at https://PlanetLogicPress.Square.Site.  Email Lynn at lwoolley9189@gmail.com.


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