OpEd: I Forgot It Was January 6th

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite
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I forgot today was January 6th.

Let me clarify that — I knew today was January 6th on the calendar. I’ve been staring right at the date on my computer and phone this morning. I just forgot that it was January 6th.


I say this as someone who reads, edits, and writes about political news virtually every day. I say this knowing there have been statements and stories already today regarding the events of January 6, 2021, at the Capitol and the players involved in that ongoing saga. And I say this as someone who was genuinely disheartened as I watched the events of that day unfold. I wrote about it at the time — just my raw, unvarnished thoughts in the moment (and without the benefit of hindsight).

Now, with the benefit of two years’ worth of hindsight and the extensive coverage we’ve provided here at RedState, particularly over the overt politicization of the “investigation” into J6, I have a fairly cynical view of the whole thing. I still hate what happened that day, but the point of this piece isn’t to rehash it. It’s to acknowledge that I quite literally forgot this was the two-year anniversary of that day and examine why/how that’s even possible.

As mentioned, I was aware of the calendar date as soon as I rose this morning. And in my usual perusal of Twitter and story topics we’re writing/contemplating writing on here at RedState, I know there were several that, at least indirectly, referenced January 6th. Still, nothing in my brain (which, admittedly, is a bit distracted with a number of things at the moment) connected the dots and pulled up thoughts of that January 6th.


So, when my colleague, Jeff Charles, inquired, somewhat facetiously, how people intended to mark the occasion, I was struck by the fact that it was only then that it dawned on me.

How is that possible? One might contend that it’s because I’m a partisan (perhaps even a partisan hack), and thus dismissive of the day’s import. They’d be wrong. First, as noted above, I hate what happened that day. I also hate what’s happened since. So while I’m admittedly a partisan, that wouldn’t permit me to just dismiss it as meaningless. Moreover, as I noted above, because of the nature of my work, I pretty much swim in this stuff. So, even if I wanted to forget it, I wouldn’t be able to.

No, I think the answer is far simpler: Like most normal folks, I’m busy and have other things on my mind. And while the events of January 6, 2021, were upsetting and troubling, they weren’t Pearl Harbor; they weren’t September 11th. They didn’t shake me to my core and I don’t need to cling to them as a political cudgel to wield against “the opposition.” They were bad. But so are many events in our history. Each day has its share of upsetting and troubling news (with the good news stories seemingly few and far between and more readily forgotten). But just as I don’t “commemorate” most of those days, I don’t commemorate January 6th. And I suspect apart from Beltway insiders and purely partisan politicos, I’m in good company on that.


So, yes, I forgot today was January 6th. And I hope to continue doing so every January 6th for the rest of my days. It’s called perspective.


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