Letter to the Editor: What It Takes to Rebuild Trust

At last, a few Republicans, including Mike Gallagher, seem seriously concerned about a president who lied to exploit his base and sought to divide the nation between those who want to believe lies and those who don’t.

Mike Gallagher is a bright guy. During an interview with the Green Bay Press-Gazette and in his article in, he describes the Jan. 6 Capitol riot clearly. Our country’s president “bears responsibility” for the assault, lied to his supporters about proof for a stolen election that he never had, and suggested the crowd could “reverse the outcome” by confronting his own VP and demanding that Mike Pence perform illegal acts. 

Gallagher said that “neither the president nor the objectors were being honest about Jan. 6,” that the president “dithered for hours” after he had “irresponsibly stoked a throng that included some mob elements” and that “he should have foreseen that there would be lawbreaking.” Not to mention death.

Federal law about incitement is also clear (18 U.S. Code 2383 – Rebellion or Insurrection). It applies to “whoever incites, sets on foot, assists or engages in any rebellion or insurrection against the authority of the United States or the laws thereof …” Everyday citizens could be

convicted and imprisoned for what Gallagher says our president did.

But Gallagher assures us that Trump doesn’t believe all this was incitement. Witnesses say Trump watched TV reports of mob violence with glee, but our representative reads Trump’s mind by saying, “I don’t think he intended a violent storming of the Capitol or the death of anybody.” 

Besides, impeachment is “inflammatory” and will further divide citizens, while a paper-thin censure vote would “rebuild rather than erode trust.” This seems too convenient – and far too late – for advocates of law and order to plead for national “trust” while mollifying the president who undermined it.

We like the idea of rebuilding trust. Many of us called for it years ago. It requires facts, truth, integrity, evidence, justice and standing up to a president who cares not a whit about democracy.

Dona and Rob Anderson

Jacksonport, Wisconsin