Jan. 6: An epiphany for our democracy
Jan. 6 is the last of the Twelve Days of Christmas, and it is called Epiphany in the Roman Catholic tradition. It is the celebration of the day when the three wise men found the baby Jesus, and the coming of the savior was made manifest to the Gentiles. This revelation changed the world for all who have been influenced by the Christian faith.
Our 2021 Epiphany represents the manifestation of truth against tyranny. A ruler may try to control information and destroy his enemies, but the truth will be revealed when the time is right. The truth is that Democracy is very fragile, and the idea of free and fair elections is difficult to maintain. However, we are fortunate to live in a country where the three branches of government work together to protect the people against tyranny over truth.
We have the longest lasting constitutional democracy on earth, and it depends on a deep devotion to seeking the truth that transcends personal and partisan preferences. Perhaps the best statement of truth was given by Republican Senator McConnell when he said that lawmakers could not overturn an election because, “it would damage our republic forever.” This statement was quoted by Democratic Leader Hoyer in the House of Representatives.
Our lawmakers are committed to working together to ensure that the voice of the people be heard. McConnell stated that “Criminal behavior will never dominate the American Congress.” Democratic Leader Senator Shumer said that this assault on the US Capitol was an act of “domestic terrorism,” and the perpetrators would be prosecuted.
Several leaders noted that events on Jan. 6 were not spontaneous. The crowd was incited by President Trump’s rally outside the White House and years of claiming that the American election system was rigged.
Nevertheless, the people spoke again on Jan. 6, and the change toward greater equality for all was made manifest by the results of a runoff election in Georgia. Raphael Warnock, Minister of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, was elected to serve as one of the Senators from Georgia just 60 years after Martin Luther King, another minister of Ebenezer Baptist, appealed to President Kennedy for help in the early days of the Civil Rights movement.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi understood the significance of Jan. 6 best when she said, “Justice will be done…. This day will evoke a spirit of Epiphany.” This Roman Catholic noted that these events occurred on Epiphany. She restarted the discussion of election results after the mob assault of the Capitol with the prayer: “Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me.”