For Doug Mastriano, resignation is not enough

Doug Mastriano helped orchestrate the calculated siege of the US Capitol. There must be consequences.

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David Duggan, Managing Editor

The greatest assault on our democracy would be a rigged or fraudulent election.

Our government would never be sustained if such deliberate or unintentional actions occurred to diminish the integrity of a free and fair outcome. It would be inherently required in each American to rise in the face of such tyranny and expel it. Our nation was forged out of such a mentality.

Yet, the outcome of the 2020 Presidential election was not rigged. State Senator Doug Mastriano, seizing a political opportunity for himself, encouraged the baseless claims of a rigged election and went from a no-name state senator to a conservative star. 

Burning down the Capitol will not vanquish our government- the British already tried that. Protesting a congressional session certainly won’t. Such protest has become synonymous with several recent Supreme Court Justice nominations. The fatal poison pill that will, though, is injected into the minds of millions of people that our elections are a farce. It doesn’t matter who you vote for or that you even vote, the shadowy organization already decided the outcome. 

Mastriano alleges he did not enter the Capitol, however, it makes no difference if he did or did not. He just poured the gasoline, lit the match, said “here” while handing it to the next person, and pointed in the direction of the declared enemy. Weeks of his incendiary language fostering a need for a combative response to the blatant tyranny culminated in him organizing bus rides to the ‘Stop the Steal’ event. 

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His subsequent denouncement of the siege of the Capitol rings hollow. Pontius Pilate washing his hands before the crucifixion of Christ was symbolic. Mastriano washing the blood off his hands after five people died is just hygienic. There is nothing virtuous in denouncing something for which you were responsible. 

A single theme can be threaded through the defenses of the leaders of the KKK, the Nazi’s and Doug Mastriano- I didn’t hang that African American. I didn’t gas a Jew. I didn’t enter the Capitol. We bore witness to what has been seen over and over again in history. A person who wields power or influence infiltrates the minds of loyal followers. He deceives them with blatant falsehoods in an attempt to commit an atrocity.

For the safety of our community, he must be placed under house arrest. He must be put on the no-fly list, and he must be barred from purchasing firearms until a criminal investigation concludes. Resigning is not enough. He must be treated in the same manner as all suspected terrorists.

By excusing his actions, by denying a required punitive response, we are creating a precedent that this conduct is acceptable. Mastriano used his position to create chaos. His calculated and deliberate assault on our democracy cannot be unexcused.