The real January 6

January 6th is "a date which will live in infamy," if you accept the histrionic ravings of the anti-Trump zealots on the left.  Of course, the real-life "day of infamy" was December 7, 1941, when the attack on Pearl Harbor resulted in over 2,400 fatalities and another 1,000 injured sailors, soldiers, and civilians.  The events of last January 6 are consistently reported, in print and on television news presentations, as the "deadly" attack on our nation's capitol.  The few deaths that did occur before, during, and after the event were primarily attributed to natural causes but include an accidental overdose.  The one violent death was a result of an unarmed woman being shot by a Capitol Police officer.  Modern political repurposing of historically clear words and phrases facilitates a certain liberty to equate a single-digit sum with two thousand.  Irony?  Maybe there is more to this irony than is immediately obvious.

January 6 was an important day long before 2021, when Washington, D.C added its own date stamp.  In the world of Western Christendom, it has been observed for centuries as the day when the three Magi, or Wise Men, arrived in Bethlehem at the stable where Christ was born.  These wise men traveled far from their homes to recognize and celebrate the beginning of a new era.  It is officially called the Epiphany and marks a critical day in the calendar of Christmastide.  To take this history a step farther, we need to look at the roots of the word epiphany.  It is derived from the Greek epipháneia and originates from a verb meaning "to appear."  Almost universally, it marks the beginning of a new and permanent chapter in history, a period of celebration and merriment. 

This year, January 6 may turn out to be a sad congressional puppet show, produced, directed, and hosted by the masters of transparent political theater.  However, all the contrived drama can't erase the historic mile-marker that the date carries with it.  A new beginning?  We won't know that until enough time has passed, but if it is, then perhaps it is being served up with a bite of irony.

Image: Public Domain.

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