DeSantis is reckless to pardon Trump and the January 6 rioters

(Patrick Semansky/Associated Press)

DeSantis is reckless to pardon Trump and the January 6 rioters

On Ed

LZ Granderson

May 26, 2023

This week Florida Governor Ron DeSantis answered what should have been an easy question. He gave a dangerous answer.

On a conservative podcast, DeSantis was asked if, if elected president, he would consider pardoning former President Donald Trump and the January 6 rioters. Instead of saying no, he was the first to dangle roots toward conspiracy theorists, as he said a DeSantis administration would look for any example of adverse treatment based on politics or armaments.

The second carrot was for all the racists who listened.

If there are other people who have done the same thing but only in a context like


Black Lives Matter


and they’re not being prosecuted at all, that’s an uneven application of justice, and so they were going to find ways that it wasn’t. And then we will use the pardon power and I will do that at the front, he said.

There is only one reason for DeSantis to bring up Black Lives Matter in a conversation about Trump and January 6: the false equivalence shell game. Which is certainly an effective political tool overall, but I think the Republicans lost this particular maneuver when the Senate

Minority Majority

Leader Mitch McConnell said last December: The whole nation knows who is responsible for that day.

Even Tucker Carlson knew that Trump had crossed a line. He may have only meant to say that in private, but he did say it, in texts that have since come to light.

So is DeSantis positioning itself further in the margins than Carlson? The governor’s lukewarm defense of democracy and the rule of law was a message not just to Trump supporters, but to Trump himself: a warning to the former president that if he gets on DeSanti’s bad side, DeSantis will White House, he’s sorry. not come to fruition.

Ultimately, what DeSantis dangles is less of a carrot and more of a ticking bomb. Forgiving domestic terrorists is setting the nation up for decades of pain that should be left behind. How do we know? Because it’s been done before.

After the Civil War in 1868


I see it was 1865-67/sw

President Andrew Johnson pardoned Confederate soldiers, and you know what happened? Let’s say the spirit of rebellion lived on. Or rather, lives on. There was a veteran of the Confederacy who served in the Senate until 1921, the same year as the Tulsa massacre. A century later, on January 6,

2021 2020

, a Confederate battle flag was carried into the Capitol, a place the flag had not reached during the actual war. Johnson’s pardon brought no healing or justice. It brought Jim Crow laws. Not that Johnson cared. He vetoed a bill that guaranteed citizenship to black people immediately after the Civil War. Congress had to overrule him. This is not a ‘critical race theory’, by the way. That’s exactly what happened.

All right, Governor DeSantis, this country cannot appease insurgents and racists in an effort to push kumbaya past January 6. If it is not ruthlessly eradicated, that kind of cancer will always return.


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