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Naperville
Thursday, May 23, 2024

Transitions – A heroic ruse

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In 1946 Jackie Robinson, the first black man to integrate baseball, was chased by white men – his fans. Robinson had helped the 1946 minor league Montreal Royals to the title and to be featured in the history books as one of the greatest minor league teams of all time.

Now, we’ve seen Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman chased, but in his case from an insurrectionist mob. Reportedly, the fast-thinking officer was leading them away from an open door to the Senate, which was sealed a minute later. Although the world was shocked by January 6, imagine the reaction if dozens of legislators, defenders and invaders had been killed in a firefight. Several defenders were armed, as were many in the mob. A gun fight in the Senate chambers would have aggravated our political resentments, with horrific potential for escalation.

Officer Goodman confronted the mob with only a baton and shoved one insurrectionist in a successful attempt to get him to follow him. Goodman’s actions have led a bi-partisan group of lawmakers to push to award him the Congressional Gold Medal of Honor.
“When Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman was the only thing standing between Members of Congress and the mob, he selflessly redirected their fury on himself, so they could escape,” said Rep. Nancy Mace, R-S.C., one of the co-sponsors of the bill.

An insurrection – defined as the act or an instance of open revolt against civil authority or a constituted government – on Our House is horribly wrong, yet some good may come of it. The insurrectionists declared victory, as did the police who directed fire hoses on unarmed people during the Civil Rights era. When devotion to a higher purpose in the face of violence and threats is contrasted on TV with insurrection and brutality, change happens for the better.

It did when Jackie Robinson stood proudly against the verbal abuse and threats he experienced as a Brooklyn Dodger.

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Barbara Blomquist
Barbara Blomquist
Barbara Blomquist is a Naperville resident, wife, mother, quilter, and screenwriter. Contact her at BWBLomquist@aol.com.

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