The Pentagon had little to say Tuesday about the news that the Biden administration had failed in its humiliating attempt to grovel before the Taliban in order to extend the August 31st deadline for withdrawal and instead doubled down on its plans to be out of the country by the deadline that is just one week away. That plan, now, has also been approved by President Biden.
There are no words I can use in (whatever is left of) “polite company” to fully express my feeling of pure revulsion and sickened disgust at the craven cowards we have “leading” us right now in Washington followed closely by how I feel for those who voted this drooling imbecile into office.
However, one short story might help illustrate how I feel– last night, we watched the fantastic movie “We Were Soldiers” and when the Colonel made his speech and told his troops that the one thing they could count on was that he would never -never- leave a single man on the field_—_”No man left behind!” I cried. That is how broken hearted I am right now.
Yesterday, our beloved Blue Angels performed at the Chicago Air Show. They took Chicago Police Officer Ella French’s badge along with them in their demonstration. She truly flew with Angels above Chicago.. what a beautiful tribute by one of the finest symbols of the American Military in existence today.
The sound of freedom in honor of one of our fallen protectors. Perfect.
God Bless America and may Officer French Rest In Peace.
A Father Stands and Delivers in behalf of his, and all, Children!
At a time when we are all wondering, with enormous justification, whether there are any true American heroes left (easy answer: don’t even bother to look in the entire Biden “Administration” of sheer, sniveling cowardice), a Colorado Springs father went to the podium to make one of the clearest pleas you will ever hear against the introduction of Critical Race Theory into the school his children attend. As you will see, he is well qualified to speak to the topic of “oppression” in today’s America:
John Kass describes the sound of bagpipes -and silence- as no one else can.
Ella French was a young, vivacious, accomplished woman who joined the Chicago Police Force because she wanted to “make the world a better place.” She and her partner stopped two brothers in a routine traffic stop when one of the animals, er, brothers, shot her in the face. Her partner was shot several times as well. She died shortly after the incident; from reports this morning, her partner is still hanging-precariously- on to life, miraculously.
I have had at the top of my to-do list for several days the writing of a tribute to Officer French. When I opened my daily e-mail from John Kass, one of the very few real, genuine, honest-to-God journalists left in what was once known as the journalism “Profession”, I found his tribute to Ella French, written in his usual beautiful, straight-from-the-heart style, which is, quite simply, beyond compare.
As there is no better to be found anywhere, here it is:
The pipes, the silence, and the funeral of Chicago Police Officer Ella French
By John Kass
What is it about the sound of bagpipes at the funeral of a police officer killed in the line of duty?
The pipes are a great and proud tradition in Chicago. The sound is martial, defiant, and strong. Sometimes the pipes stop abruptly. Sometimes they fade away, like a scream from lungs without air.
Or is that scream an internal sound only in the minds of the family and other loved ones, when the silence is about to begin?
The pipes played for Chicago Police Officer Ella French, with thousands of uniformed officers inside and outside the church on a hot day. And as the pipes played, many police must have been thinking about the night French was killed, and all the times they, themselves, have stopped a car at night, wondering, “Why her and not me?”
She was 29, with just three years on the job, still learning, when she was shot to death on Aug. 7, during a police traffic stop in the West Englewood neighborhood. Her partner, Carlos Yanez Jr., was shot twice in the head and once in the shoulder and remains in the hospital.
And at her funeral, as at all the others, after the pipers were done piping, the silence began with another sound: the closing of a car door leaving the cemetery.
“It’s the worst,” said a friend, Patrick Fitzmaurice, a retired Chicago Fire Department Paramedic. “That silence is horrible. It’s fade to black. That’s all I keep thinking at these times. Fade to black. And what happens to the family when the silence comes.”
You might pray for her soul and for her family, for her mother, Elizabeth, for her brother Andrew, and that larger family of hers in blue, her brothers and sisters of the Chicago Police Department. They’re family, now, and they’re in mourning too.
I suppose I really don’t have to ask you to pray for her. My guess is you’ve already said a prayer and you’ll say more, lighting a candle at church, asking God for mercy for her soul and for a troubled city. You might whisper it when your head hits the pillow at night. Or, maybe a silent prayer to yourself in the morning, and if your children ask you “What’s wrong?” you just shake your head and tell them that nothing’s wrong and hug them a bit tighter.
That’s what thousands of Chicago police families must be going through right now.
That silence is crushing. You can feel the weight of it. You can even hear it. You may have heard it yourself, after the funerals of your own loved ones, when the condolence visits finally stop.
Friends and family bring their casseroles and their coffee cakes and their hugs. There is always the sound of hushed talking and the clinking of dishes and coffee cups in the sink as they’re being washed, as others of them come up the walk and knock on the door to pay their respects.
Some find their way out into the backyard with the smokers and drink whiskey, and tell stories about the deceased, what they loved, what they didn’t, and the crazy, funny things they did when alive. Others are on the sofa in the front room, balancing coffee cups and saucers on their knees, telling other stories.
It’s all about love trying to push that silence away.
Then the last car leaves the driveway. There’s that click of the lock on the front door. You’re alone. And the silence is right there.
Politicians always feel a need to fill any silence. Most can’t help themselves. But Mayor Lori Lightfoot, loathed by the police, didn’t say a word.
That was new. Mayors always try to say something. But she didn’t, respecting the wishes of the family that did not want her to speak. She was mindful of all those cops who loathe her for her anti-police rhetoric over the years, and who turned their backs on her at the hospital.
It must have been tough on Lightfoot, but she showed up. She sat next to former Mayor Richard M. Daley in silence, and for that, thousands of Chicago Police officers and their families must have been grateful.
What did we learn about Officer Ella French?
We learned from one of Ella French’s partners that she loved making banana bread for them, how she loved dogs. We learned she was kind and concerned about the people in the communities she served. We learned she treated those on the other side of the badge with respect. We learned that she loved life.
Her mother, Elizabeth French offered a strong and beautiful eulogy, beginning with, “I have two children. And today I’m here with half my heart.”
She told a story about the day she adopted Ella and wrote it out in a letter when her daughter was young. “Dear Ella,” she read from her letter, “let me tell you the story of when you were born to me.”
She told all law enforcement officers that her daughter was proud to be a member of the police family. She thanked them for their service. And she closed with the words she told her daughter before every shift:
“Be careful and safe.”
We also learned about the light in Ella, when her godfather spoke about how she laid down life in service to others. The godfather mentioned the words of Jesus in the Bible. And then he continued:
“We are sobered whenever we see sacrifice on a battlefield, or in a blazing building or a street corner in Chicago,” he said. “The darker our culture gets, the further from the light of love and the light of God, the more these incidents of sacrifice stand out like beams of light from eternity.”
Like a candle in the dark.
There will be time enough in coming days to talk of political spin and the calculations of political cowards, and all the finger-pointing in a city unmoored. But not now. Not today.
All that is drowned out in the light shining from her, as she gave her life to her city and her brothers and sisters in blue.
There are other things to consider now, like the silence that comes after the pipes, and of all those good men and women who love Ella French and her family, and who will watch over them.
Because that’s what family is about: The people who show up to check on you when the silence begins.
We mourn tonight for the many Americans left abandoned at the Kabul Airport with little or no protection from their government along with the reported 20,000 Afghans who helped our cause as translators and their families who will be left totally unprotected as sitting ducks for slaughter should the Taliban decide to do what it has always done to its enemies—slaughter them. In the meantime, our so-called “President”, who has been a fraud for all of his almost 50-year career and is now a senile fraud who doesn’t know where he is half the time, has hidden in the luxurious venue of Camp David being protected by his minders. While I am broken hearted at what may, and in view of what we know of the Taliban’s track record of sheer animal and wanton violence will probably, happen to our fellow citizens in Kabul, tonight I am absolutely furious at all those virtue-signaling, holier-than-thou “Republicans” who thought their tender little sensitivities being so terribly hurt by mean tweets was more important than the welfare of their Nation and just had to show all of us how pure as the wind driven snow they were by voting that big old mean man out of office and voting for the most radical, the most corrupt, the most demented, the most dementia-ridden blithering idiot to ever sit in that sacred office.
However, as usual, my President, Donald J. Trump, said it best tonight and I, therefore, proudly set forth his statement issued just moments ago:
Moments ago, President Trump called on Joe Biden to resign from office after yet another monumental failure, this time on the foreign policy front.
As the crisis has continued to worsen in Afghanistan, Biden has been largely silent, mainly issuing boilerplate Twitter responses and casually telling the country he’ll update us on the situation “in a couple of days”.
In response, President Trump issued the following blistering statement:
“It is time for Joe Biden to resign in disgrace for what he has allowed to happen in Afghanistan, along with the tremendous surge in COVID, the border catastrophe, the destruction of energy independence, and our crippled economy. It shouldn’t be a big deal, because he wasn’t elected legitimately in the first place!“, Trump said.
And, furthermore, in the exercise of whatever remains of my First Amendment right to free speech I will note, as unpopular as it is in some quarters, that I agree 100%, absolutely and totally with the President’s statement that Biden was not elected legitimately in the first place.
We pray for the souls our government has abandoned, both our fellow citizens and those who came to our aid and who may now be shown our appreciation by being slaughtered and we are deeply shamed by the disgrace and stain this so-called “Administration” has brought down upon our beloved Nation.
May God have mercy on all those so desperately trying to flee Kabul, our fellow citizens and our Afghan colleagues who assisted us in our time of need, and may He give His Grace to our Beloved Nation in this crisis when His Grace is so needed.
At about 3:30 a.m. today, Friday the 13th, Chuck Schumer sought to have SR1-HR1 passed by unanimous consent. Standing in the breach was Ted Cruz, who objected and foiled the dead-of-night attempt to destroy the Republic. God blessed Texas, and all of us, with Ted Cruz.
Finally! An American company unabashedly standing for American values!
Everyone who knows us knows I do – unabashedly!- love my wines, so it is indescribably exciting to tell about a wine company’s TV ad which is one of the most pro-America, pro-American, pro-American exceptionalism ads I have seen in a very long time. Here’s the ad— if you don’t feel at least just a little like jumping up, standing at attention and saluting, perhaps you had better consider getting yourself to the ER and having your vitals checked!
And the death of her grief-stricken German Shepherd when she never returned
almost certainly one of the very few citizens in America history to be executed for trespassing- even in the “hallowed” halls of our National Capitol, already soiled and profaned by the corruption which sluices through its spaces like the sewage it is.
I take my theme from one of my colleagues at Ricochet who I know only as @MarciN. She recently stated in a comment the following words which I cannot “unsee” as they so precisely fit the way I have felt since January 7, 2021:
The treatment of the 400 people involved in the January 6 demonstration may be the most important event in the history of western civilization. This is a turning point.
While I take those words as my theme, I address one aspect of that day, actually the most lawless, cruel, inhuman incident by more quantum measures than I know how to express—the taking of the life of a 110 pound, unarmed, American citizen who was exercising her God given right to peaceably protest what she viewed as an illegitimate election. She was reportedly an avid supporter of President Trump (Disclosure: so am I! And damned proud of it!) and paid with her life for believing the words of one of the most sacred documents ever written in the annals of freedom—
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
She also paid the ultimate price for believing that the words of another sacred document of freedom, The First Amendment of the Bill of Rights, actually means what it says when it decrees:
Congress shall make no law … abridging .. the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
The enormity of this act- the surreal aura which envelops the realization that this could happen in the America I was raised and educated to love and honor—and to serve, in the same branch in which Ms Babbitt served, the United States Air Force— is, not to put too fine a point on it, almost unbearable. Both the act and the cruel response to it which has followed, more of which below, quite simply fit no previously known model of what I always thought America stood for, first of all our Rule of Law and its tradition of fairness, justice and equal treatment under law.
It is my hope that the following discussion will bring to the fore some facts—those stubborn things John Adams cautioned us about— which my research has revealed and which I state, in good faith, that I do not recall being reported to the public by any segment of our vaunted journalism “profession” as they did not fit the prescribed narrative. In doing so, at no time am I questioning, even in the slightest, the right of citizens to make any statements about this incident they wish to express, even, sadly, the filth some have used to smear her memory.
I. Who Was Ashli Babbitt? The Person, Not The Caricature.
She was described by her Mom, in an interview by Julie Kelly of American Greatness, who has become one of the best sources of all news related to January 6 and its nightmarish aftermath, as determined and strong willed, always up for adventure. September 11 strengthened her conviction to serve her country and her Mom agreed to sign the necessary affidavit to allow her to enlist in the Air Force at age 17.
She further related information not, to the best of my knowledge, previously reported, which helps one see the person Ashli was more clearly:
Ashli graduated from El Capitan High School in Lakeside, California in 2003 and entered the U.S. Air Force. On her 21st birthday, Ashli sustained serious injuries in an explosion at Camp Bucca detention facility in Iraq and was airlifted to a hospital in Germany.
Ashli’s adventurous spirit, Witthoeft explained, is what motivated her daughter to travel alone from California to Washington, D.C. so she could listen to Donald Trump’s speech on January 6. “She was an avid Trump supporter, she knew that’s where she had to be,” Witthoeft said. “She went to all the [Trump] rallies if there was one nearby. She was the political one at our house.” At the time, Ashli and her husband, Aaron, were operating a pool cleaning company in southern California.
Did you know she had been seriously injured while serving her country in a war zone? Neither did I.
She also related the heartbreaking details about learning about her death—and the other sad passing which followed shortly after:
Witthoeft remembers getting the call from her daughter-in-law at work. “We knew from the news reports that someone had been shot and killed at the Capitol. So when she called to say Ashli was shot, I just knew. I could tell in her voice. We hoped there was time to pack a bag and get to D.C., but there wasn’t.”
Witthoeft said “red tape” and the military-style lockdown in the capital caused a long delay in getting Babbitt’s body back home. In February, Babbitt was cremated and her remains scattered into the Pacific Ocean near her favorite dog park.
Three days later, after sleeping on her belongings awaiting her return, Babbitt’s beloved German Shepherd died.
Did you know that her beloved German Shepherd died shortly after her ashes were scattered in the Pacific Ocean of what I am assuming, but do not know, was grief when his friend did not return? Neither did I.
Perhaps it would be helpful to relate what her friends and family thought of her before briefly, and only because it is needed to fill in the whole picture, diving headfirst into the slime used by such beacons of elite ethical standards as the Washington Post have called her.
Ashli’s Mother summed up her views of what she was doing when she was murdered:
“It’s infuriating,” Witthoeft told me. “She was there exercising her First Amendment rights. This country was founded on brave men and women and I feel like that’s what our patriots were doing,” Witthoeft also said she sings the National Anthem every night at 6:00 p.m. Pacific Time in solidarity with the January 6 detainees held in a D.C. jail, who sing the song every night at 9:00 p.m. in the East. “We’re fighting for justice for all of them.”
Witthoeft, however, is comforted by the outpouring of love and support from so many Americans “lifting up Ashli’s name.” She hopes it results in a “betterment of America.”
And her message to those who smear her late daughter’s name? “You only have awful things to say? Well, my daughter fought for your right to say them.”
At this point, and in the interest of clarity and honest reporting, I should note that I use the word “murdered” advisedly, as it was the opinion of the Medical Examiner of the District of Columbia that her death was to be classified a “homicide”:
Here is Senior Airman Ashli Babbitt sending a Christmas message home with her fellow servicemen, including her Commanding General:
Here is a group of photos the family took with them on the boat from which her remains were buried at sea off of Dog Beach, San Diego, California:
I should at this point take a moment of personal privilege to note that I participated in a similar poignant voyage recently when my Brother’s remains were scattered off Newport Beach, California. I readily admit that experience could account, at least in some measure, for the depth of my feeling about Ashli and the defilement of her memory.
Here are the words of her Brother’s memorial message:
And here are the words of one of her closest friends:
“Ashli was a passionate person. No matter what she did she did it with passion and energy. She would light up any room she walked in. She had the ability to make anyone and everyone feel special. Her spirit was contagious beyond belief. This was something that just could not be explained, but if you knew her, you knew her. I will forever cherish and be grateful for the memories. She was a loving, loyal, and kind friend. Most of all she was a person, just like you and I.”
A few notes of contrast might assist in trying—with the emphasis on that word-to understand the depth of the bile and hatred directed toward the person I have just attempted to describe, admittedly from the standpoint of those most favorably inclined to her good qualities, and that process can start with a column which just appeared in the Washington Post, entitled “How Ashli Babbitt went from Capitol rioter to Trump-embraced ‘martyr’”, described by Powerline as follows:
The Washington Post doesn’t like the fact that Ashli Babbitt, who was shot and killed by a police officer inside the Capitol on January 6 of this year, is being viewed by some as a martyr. The Post’s story, by anti-Trumper Josh Dawsey and Paul Schwartzman, drips with contempt for the notion that Babbitt could be a martyr. I don’t recall the Post ever questioning the view that George Floyd could be seen that way.
I mention this piece not because of the least surprising news of the day, that the Wa Po writers “seem offended by the fact that Babbitt’s death has lead to protests”, but to point to the fact that —after assuring my stomach was up to the task- I checked that “esteemed” publication’s Facebook page to check on the comments. Serious mistake, even on a strong stomach. Page after page of “she had it coming” type comments with such brilliant witticisms as naming her “Trashli Babbitt”, not to mention seditionist, domestic terrorist, screaming lunatic and, one of my favorites-”dangerous” (to describe an unarmed, 110 pound woman who could never, in a fair world, be considered a threat to an armed policeman, reportedly twice her size. Never.)
Another example to illustrate why many of us wonder if the divisions in our Nation will ever be resolved, at least in our lifetimes, involved her Mother’s attempt to get some answers:
A few weeks after Ashli was killed, Witthoeft said she finally took her head off her pillow and started making calls. A staffer for Senator Dianne Feinstein’s (D-Calif.) office at first hung up on her, insisting he didn’t know who Ashli Babbitt was. Witthoeft called again; the same staffer answered. She asked to speak with her senator for two minutes. “Ma’am, I am sorry for your unfortunate situation but if your daughter hadn’t stormed the Capitol, she wouldn’t have been shot,” Witthoeft said the staffer told her. “Dianne Feinstein will never have two minutes for you.”
I cannot get anywhere close to understanding the cruel arrogance it must take to speak so callously to the Mother of a young woman who has been shot to death, no matter the politics involved. Wasn’t this the same Senatorial office which employed, for many years, a proven Chinese spy?
Senior Airman Babbitt deserved better than the scurrilous denigration her memory has received. A central question remains, however, and one which the Lame Stream Media has shown a remarkable lack of curiosity about, and that is why the Officer who shot and killed her deserved such blatantly partial favoritism by the Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, the Capitol Police and the IAD of the Metropolitan Police of the District of Columbia. That question will be examined below.
II. What Was Ashli Babbitt Doing When She Was Shot? Why Was She There?
For those who may care to study and review it, there is a mother lode of solid information as well as photos and video to afford one a fairly clear picture of what Ashli was doing, or attempting to do, when she was murdered. It is also clear, from the material I have reviewed in my research, that an unarmed —including in that word such items as bats, flagpoles, batons, etc., which were in ample view in the rest of the crowd surrounding her before she was shot— 5’2”, 110 pound young woman could not possibly have been reasonably viewed as a threat of any kind to the very large officer who is alleged, with a significant amount of credible evidence, to have shot her. Thus, the following are my views based on the material I have seen, to be supported by references to those writings —some quite lengthy and detailed—which support my statements.
She was with a group of Trump supporters, along with at least one clearly identified Antifa thug and agitator (John Sullivan, a/k/a Jayden X) and perhaps others, gathering at the doors to the Speaker’s Lobby, an area leading to the House Chamber itself. By this point, the Trump supporters would have been well advised to back away from this area but, considering the fact that they were practically invited in to the area by officers holding the doors open for them, the designation of them as “trespassers” seems quite problematic to me. Overlooked, as well, for those of us who still believe in such quaint and archaic ideas is the fact that this is still, to the best of my knowledge, The Peoples’ House, not Nancy’s House. The Antifa “enablers”, on the other hand, were exactly where they were supposed to be, doing what they were supposed to be doing, including breaking the windows out of the doors at the entrance according to the video evidence available so far, an act Ashli did not participate in but of which she has been repeatedly accused of by the lazy paragons of ethics in the MSM.
The approach I have chosen, in an attempt to be “fair and balanced”, a phrase I learned long ago strikes terror in the hearts of liberals and RINOs and Never Trumpers (but I repeat myself) I will refer to the few accounts we have which purport to give the officer’s side of the story followed by a few opinions of those who have examined the evidence available to us who believe Ashli’s shooting was, at the very least, an unjustified homicide. We will never know Ashli’s side of the story, so it is appropriate to quote from a pithy comment made by a colleague on Ricochet (@Vince Guerra) who nailed the evidentiary problem which permeates this entire sordid affair:
Shucks. If only we had another 14,000 hours worth of footage from hundreds of camera angles we could examine. Darn it to heck.
Paul Sperry with Real Clear Investigations, a highly respected investigative journalist (an endangered species if ever there was one) had a good summary of the steps the officer took along with his alleged justification for his actions can be found in his piece entitled “With Ashli Babbitt Killing Shrouded in Mystery, Capitol Officer Who Shot Her Is in Hiding for His Own Safety”:
Drawing on interviews with informed sources and available documents, RealClearInvestigations has put together a portrait of the actual shooter and the shooting, which some describe as completely justified and others call murder.
The officer who opened fire on Babbitt holds the rank of lieutenant and is a longtime veteran of the force who worked protective detail in the Speaker’s Lobby, a highly restricted area behind the House chamber, sources say. An African-American, he was put on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation led by the Metropolitan Police of the District of Columbia, which shares jurisdiction with the Capitol Police. The Justice Department is also involved in the inquiry.
Most of the circumstances that led to his actions are still unclear. But video footage filmed by rioters shows the lieutenant, after taking up a defensive position in a doorway, carefully aiming and shooting Babbitt as she tries to climb through a smashed window beside a barricaded double door leading to the Speaker’s Lobby, part of a pro-Trump mob of protesters. Babbitt, 35, had no weapon. She died later at a hospital. The decorated Air Force veteran, who had traveled from San Diego, was wearing a Trump flag as a cape when she was shot.
Dressed in a dark suit and white shirt with cufflinks, along with a beaded bracelet on his right shooting hand, the Capitol Police officer fired at her from the side of the barricade, where he had been hidden from view in a doorway. At least from what can be seen and heard from the video, he appears to issue no commands to stop nor any verbal warning that he would shoot.
Mr. Sperry published another valuable article, entitled “Lawyer: Capitol Cop Who Shot Ashli Babbitt ‘Ambushed’ Her on Jan. 6 Without Warning” on August 5, 2021 which I highly recommend as it contains significant new information on the use of force issue. It can be accessed here.
More detail as to the shooter’s account can be found in one of the most extensive analyses my research has revealed. It is entitled “The Execution of Ashli Babbitt” and relates the following information:
However, as we shall see, the lieutenant purportedly had no idea other police were within 20′ or so of him when he fired the shot nor could he have known of any instructions given to the crowd by other police officers.
He reportedly told those investigating the shooting that he heard reports that pipe bombs had been found on rioters elsewhere in the Capitol. He said he considered his life in danger, though it is unknown why he made the determination to make a deadly stand in this particular doorway and not retreat or get more police support.
The lieutenant said he had no idea who, if any among the protesters, were armed. He also claimed he had no idea there were other officers extremely close to his line of fire on the opposite side of the doorway. He said in his statement he couldn’t see the other officers, only a hallway full of people.
The lieutenant added that seeing Babbitt’s backpack was a factor in his decision to shoot her. Based on line-of-site angles in that area, as we shall see it is highly questionable that he could have actually seen the smallish backpack before he committed to take the shot.
What was in Babbitt’s backpack? A pipe bomb, firearm, retractable baton or bear spray? No, she was carrying a wool sweater and a scarf.
I especially refer to that article for those seeking finely grained examination of the precise timeline involved—up to the second the fatal bullet left the muzzle—complete with video from various sources on the scene, including “Jayden X”, the Antifa plant in the crowd.
A brief detour into what Mr X brought to what was already turning into a nightmarish scene for all involved and a fatal one for Ashli might be helpful. It seems that Mr. X was a well known anti-Trump (and, as most of them are, probably anti-everything) agitator, who sold his video recording of the scene to the Washington Post and NBC for $35,000.00 each. That money is now being kindly held for him by the DOJ, which seized it when he was arrested for participating in the mayhem that day. I detail a bit about Mr. X to illustrate that maybe, just maybe, those of us who have long suspected that BLM and Antifa (or, dare I say it, the FBI?) played a much more significant role than the DOJ and the media have admitted are not, after all, knuckle-dragging conspiracy theorists.
Here is Mr. X, “doing his job”, a few feet from Ashli seconds before she was shot, holding one of the tools of his trade (wanton destruction):
The shooter can be seen in the background, seemingly lining up his shot.
In law, there is an oft-repeated phrase: reasonable minds may differ. That most assuredly applies to this situation as we have seen from the outpouring of venomous names Ashli has been called but I would note the most important part of that phrase is the word “reasonable.” Based on some of the comments I have seen on social media—and in the so-called “professional” press— those comments are obviously not the product of reason, under any interpretation of that word.
III. Was Ashli’s death a justifiable homicide? If so, based on what evidence, i.e., facts?
While the Medical Examiner of the District of Columbia found that Ashli died as a result of a homicide, the Department of [In]justice decided not to press charges against the shooter and released a curiously phrased statement setting forth its reasons for declining prosecution. It is as pure an exercise in Orwellian newspeak as one will ever find, save perhaps in that classic dystopian novel itself. The full statement can be accessed here. It first sets out the legal basis for such a charge against the officer:
The focus of the criminal investigation was to determine whether federal prosecutors could prove that the officer violated any federal laws, concentrating on the possible application of 18 U.S.C. § 242, a federal criminal civil rights statute. In order to establish a violation of this statute, prosecutors must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the officer acted willfully to deprive Ms. Babbitt of a right protected by the Constitution or other law, here the Fourth Amendment right not to be subjected to an unreasonable seizure. Prosecutors would have to prove not only that the officer used force that was constitutionally unreasonable, but that the officer did so “willfully,” which the Supreme Court has interpreted to mean that the officer acted with a bad purpose to disregard the law. As this requirement has been interpreted by the courts, evidence that an officer acted out of fear, mistake, panic, misperception, negligence, or even poor judgment cannot establish the high level of intent required under Section 242.
After a recitation of the results of its investigation which, it is important to note, included many items which have not been revealed to the public (“ … statements from the officer involved and other officers and witnesses to the events, physical evidence from the scene of the shooting, and the results of an autopsy.”) the statement then continues with convoluted language only a bureaucrat could be proud of:
The investigation revealed no evidence to establish beyond a reasonable doubt that the officer willfully committed a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 242. Specifically, the investigation revealed no evidence to establish that, at the time the officer fired a single shot at Ms. Babbitt, the officer did not reasonably believe that it was necessary to do so in self-defense or in defense of the Members of Congress and others evacuating the House Chamber. Acknowledging the tragic loss of life and offering condolences to Ms. Babbitt’s family, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and U.S. Department of Justice have therefore closed the investigation into this matter.
As I read the last paragraph, I recalled quite vividly watching a press conference on July 5, 2016 in which the then-revered Director of the FBI used almost identical language to exonerate the then-presumptive next President of the United States. Perhaps they have stock language stored for use when one of their own is obviously guilty of criminal conduct and needs “a little help from a friend.”
An analysis of this statement by one with experience in Federal Criminal Law cast serious doubt on this blatantly transparent act of protection of one of the elite. In a piece entitled “The DOJ Is Lying about the Ashley (sic.) Babbitt case”, the author went straight to the glaring omission in the statement— was excessive force used? Here is his analysis:
This conclusion should be no surprise. Not because of the law or the facts, but because of the people in charge of the Department of Justice. The U.S. Capitol Police, like the Park Police, have always had a special relationship with the DOJ – one that includes preferential treatment. This case is no different.
For starters, the three basic elements to a prosecution under 18 U.S.C. § 242 are that the defendant (1) acting under color of law; (2) willfully; (3) deprived the victim of a federally protected right.
Excessive force is easy to establish. The Supreme Court has held that the government must introduce evidence that the action of the officer in shooting to kill Babbitt was “excessive in relation” to a legitimate government objective. Kingsley v. Hendrickson, 135 S. Ct. 2466, 2473-2474 (2015). This is an objective standard – the force must be objectively unreasonable when viewed from the standpoint of a reasonable officer at the scene. Here, Babbitt was unarmed, was climbing through a window and not attacking anyone. In response, she is shot and killed. Easily excessive.
This brings us to “willfulness.”
We have serious doubts about the DOJ position that there was “no evidence” to establish beyond a reasonable doubt that the officer willfully violated Section 242. As an initial matter, the DOJ press release neglects to mention whether the officer used excessive force, instead going right to an analysis on willfulness. We believe this reveals their intent to soften the blow of the press release.
As to willfulness, 18 U.S.C. applies “when the defendant understands that he is unjustifiably invading a legally protected interest, or acts in reckless disregard of the law.” However, the defendant need not have been “thinking in constitutional terms,” as long as his “aim was not to enforce local law but to deprive a citizen of a right and that right was protected by the Constitution.” Screws v. United States, 325 U.S. 91, 106 (1945).
Here, the DOJ exaggerates – and at worst, lies – about its “willfulness burden.” We doubt the DOJ couldn’t prove willfulness in this case.
To me, the most disgusting aspect of this DOJ statement is the mention of the officer’s right of self-defense. Another author pointed out how ludicrous such a suggestion was in an essay entitled “Why Not Award Ashli Babbitt’s Killer the Medal of Honor?”:
Perhaps Ashli Babbitt was leading a company of heavily armed commandos, trained and ready to kill or capture our elected representatives? But there is no evidence that the people behind Ashli knew each other or were armed, and none about their intentions. What about Babbitt herself? Was she armed, as a commando? Or did she look like a fearsome ninja? No, she was unarmed. And, weighing 110 pounds, she would hardly trigger physical fears in females of ordinary size—much less in a seasoned male cop, twice her size, armed with a semi automatic Glock—not the standard 9 mm, but the sure-kill .40 caliber kind.
It is my view that massively excessive force was used in this instance and that this opinion, based on the few minutes of video we have available to us now will be further proven once “our” Government finally sees fit to share the rest of the 14,000 hours of video evidence.
However, to be fair and balanced, let us posit, for the sake of argument, that it was a justified use of force. Professor Emeritus Angelo Codevilla has a most interesting idea in the event that’s really what our betters think of this tragedy:
If the killing of the Air Force veteran in the Capitol on January 6 was a salvific act, why hide the killer? Why not celebrate him?
What follows describes our oligarchy’s terrible trilemma concerning their narrative of January 6.
Multiple sources—chiefly the U.S government by its efforts to hide him—identify Capitol Police Lieutenant [deleted due to uncertainty of the officer’s identity] as the officer who killed Ashli Babbitt as she was attempting to climb through a window to enter the House Speaker’s lobby that day. Were this identification incorrect, the certainty that the correct one is surfacing in secretless D.C. reminds our oligarchy of how hazardous are the foundations on which it set the ruling narrative that it narrowly thwarted the supposed “greatest menace to our democracy since the Civil War”—armed, white insurrectionists in the act of overthrowing the U.S. government, by courageous police work and prosecutions.
Most forthrightly Biden could award Lt. [deleted] (or someone else) the Congressional Medal of Honor in a solemn Oval Office ceremony and read the citation to the American people.
For the citation’s preamble, the White House need only crib statements over the past six months from the president, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), and just about every civil, military, corporate, and media authority figure in the land. Because if the people who assembled around or coursed through the Capitol on January 6 really were an armed mob organized by enemies of the Constitution and about to overthrow it, then stopping them by placing one deadly shot into the person leading the charge was an act of rare skill and courage, deserving honor and thanks. That’s a preamble the American people already know by heart.
There follows a most incisive discussion of why our “leaders” find themselves on the horns of a dilemma (or trilemma as the Professor terms it) in that those messy things called facts could cause a wee little problem:
Medal of Honor citations, however, consist of detailed descriptions of the act being celebrated. They detail the enemy, the circumstances, and the danger that the awardee took upon himself to save others. They explain to Americans as well as to the awardee why all of us should ever be proud of him.
Hence, detail and transparency are essential to the ceremony. Who was the enemy on January 6? Who were the white supremacists, and who organized them? The U.S government has spent countless millions developing databases on white supremacists, whom it officially considers the principal threat to the American people’s security. Surely, it can publish the list it has compiled that shows who endangered what. And if it refuses to do so because those on that list might sue for slander, perhaps that list is not one of facts but of political innuendo.
But the U.S government does know for a fact that certain organizations were involved, somehow, in planning the showiest parts of what happened January 6. And it knows that because persons who at least took part in deciding what the organizations did and did not do—if indeed they did not control those actions—were paid by the FBI and other government agencies.
Clearly, whoever in the White House were to be tasked with writing a Medal Of Honor citation would have a hard time.
Sooner or later, however, somebody may be handed that job. Why? Because if killing Ashli Babbitt was not an honorable deed, then it was cowardly first-degree murder in the service of a lie. Much of the U.S. oligarchy shares responsibility for that crime, because so many of its members have taken part in covering it up. As usual in Washington, the coverup ends up being far more serious and revealing than the crime. Perhaps Attorney General Merrick Garland will recall that one of his predecessors, John Mitchell, spent time in Club Fed for helping to cover up a far lesser crime.
IV. Any hope for Justice for Ashli’s memory will have to come from her family’s lawyers and the Courts- her Government has utterly failed her.
As a lawyer, it is times like this when I am most proud to call myself a member of the Trial Bar. Setting aside the fact that this is no longer a sentiment loudly proclaimed due to the diminished esteem into which my profession has fallen, the fact remains that when this kind of scenario unfolds, there is only one more route to any kind of fair treatment-a committed, dedicated and- most of all- courageous lawyer who will bring light upon all the hidden evidence of what really happened to Ashli and who covered it up.
Call me naïve for thinking there will eventually be some measure of justice for her memory, but history is replete with examples of such triumphs.
Ashli Babbitt was, at worst, a trespasser. She did not hurt a single person. She was not a threat to anyone.
Ashli Babbitt was murdered.
It is my fervent hope and prayer that someday, somehow, her memory will receive the Justice the American Rule of Law once stood for and hopefully will again.