Letter to the Editor - The Lakeville Journal - 7-28-22
Should Pence receive a medal for merit?
The heart of the heartland, Indiana, has ceased beating with an easy Hoosier smile, annual basketball hysteria, pride in the Jackson 5, the big O and Jimmy Dean. Indiana now garners headlights as its Secretary of State falsely debases a gynecologist, a shooter blasts the Greenwood mall, and, of course, the embarrassment of a one-time-only-elected governor, Pence, calling another Hoosier VP, Quayle, on whether to aid and abet a coup — commit treason.
I grew up in Indiana when state officials and statesmen with character were elected: Lugar, Daniels, the Bayhs. Few United States senators of either party surpass Richard Lugar (elected 1977-2003) in decency, achievements (human rights, arms control and disarmament), and vast domestic and international regard. Lugar was a decorated statesman — “a gentle giant of bipartisanship” back when governing was serious, when the Senate acted, was responsible. Lugar received the President’s Medal of Freedom in 2013 — given for especially meritorious contribution to the security and national interest of the United States.
Last week, Pat Cipollone finally testified in public regarding the violent January 6, 2022 insurrection. The former White House counsel was forthcoming after Cassidy Hutchinson’s damning Jan. 6 Committee testimony and Liz Cheney’s call to honor. For 18 months Cipollone was silent. He and his White House elite zipped their mouths while a pandemic of lies along with COVID spread furiously across the U.S. Two pandemics, a virus and a cowardly withholding of facts, depleted this nation by color coding its citizens good or bad, responsibly courageous or mean cowards, red vs. blue.
Cipollone advocated for Pence to be awarded the President’s Medal of Freedom for what? Not aiding and abetting criminality? Pence defied his own lynch mob and Trump’s mob leadership to stay, be present for his constitutionally assigned duty to conduct a legitimate certification of the election naming Joe Biden as President. Done for 232 years.
For December into January, Pence knew of Trump’s illegal plans to overturn the congressional proceedings, knew of the desired role for him to get certification thrown to the House of Representatives for a Trump victory, a stealing of the voters’ will. For this — Pence’s knowledge and his inaction prior to 1 p.m. Jan. 6, the manslaughter of five, the spectacle for the nation and the world of the U.S. Capitol overrun with an armed mob directed by the losing president — Pence ought to get a Presidential Medal of Freedom?
Fits with other recent Republican recipients of this prestigious award: Devon Nunes and Jim Jordan enablers of grift and fraud awarded this medal by Trump in secret, unremarked anywhere.
So why not award Pence for his silence before and after the deadly incident at the Capitol, for his prior knowledge not turned to preventive action? Pence has said that speaking publicly about Jan. 6 is beneath his position. Elected VP, under oath, paid by the American public, trusted by the American public — he is beyond telling the truth, ceasing lies, thwarting the demise of democracy. Pence is no giant.