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If Capitol rioters loved America, why did they try to destroy it?

I’ve been thinking a lot about love lately. After all, Sunday is Valentine’s Day, and my wife of twenty years is still my love. We decided more than two decades ago to build a life together, and we’ve done that, because when you love somebody that’s what you do. You build them up instead of tearing them down. 

 So, as I watched the impeachment trial, and saw video of people chanting USA, as they tore down the very country they claimed to love, I was confused. When I saw them with American flags, storming the very Capitol that flag represents, I didn’t get it. When I heard them tell a police officer, we’re doing this for you, even after they attacked and killed one of his colleagues, I was wondering how they could hurt this country they claim to love. 

 Because if you love this country, how do you smear human waste on the Capitol walls? How do you plant pipe bombs that might kill Americans? How do you try to overthrow the government for doing its job?

 But as I watched the video I realized they don’t love this country. They love what Donald Trump says it should be. That’s why, even as they invaded the Capitol they said things like, “Our president wants us here…We wait and take orders from our president…He’ll be happy, we’re fighting for Trump.”

 And after they did it, Trump told them he loved them. But that can’t be true, because love doesn’t send you into danger and then say, “You’re on your own.” Love doesn’t put you in a corner and leave you there alone. 

Because here’s what I’ve read about love, and I’ve come to know that this is true. Lovealways protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love—true love—never fails.   

Photo: The U.S. Capitol, six days after the insurrection. By Miki Jourdan

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