It’s Time For a 1/6 Documentary

Samuel Corum/CNP via ZUMA

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.The more we learn about the events of 1/6, the worse they get. Now the Justice Department is saying that they’re looking at bringing “significant felony cases tied to sedition and conspiracy.” They’re also promising to reveal some additional, “shocking” information about what happened inside the Capitol building during the riot.
I sure hope one of the broadcast nets is putting together a quickie two-hour documentary/tick-tock on this whole thing. Because new information is dribbling out in bits and pieces, I think most people don’t realize just how bad the whole incident was. And this is, unfortunately for us print journalists, a story that can really only be told on TV. It starts right after the election, when Republicans began their long campaign to convince the public the election was stolen. Then it segues into the surprisingly well planned and well funded effort to bring a mob into Washington DC. On the day itself, only TV can really bring home just how bad it looked, and only a tick-tock can explain why Donald Trump’s behavior was even worse than you think. And then, of course, the assault on the Capitol itself, which produced five deaths, as well as scores of injuries to both rioters and police.
And then the coda, in which Republican politicians and Fox News almost instantly agree on a storyline that discounts any conservative responsibility and blames liberals for the whole thing.
But it’s a story that needs both detail and images, and it needs be told pretty quickly even if we’re still finding out new things every day. The public, I think, is nowhere near as shocked about this insurrection as they would be if they saw the whole thing laid out in one dramatic telling. So let’s get cracking on this, OK?