1/6/21 insurrection post mortem: How did it happen? What could/should have been done? What should be the response?

Weren’t they shouting “Hang Pence”?

I agree completely. But how do we know they were unarmed? And they were threatening Pence, and perhaps Pelosi. In such a confused situation you can’t take a chance.

Shouting threats from a different room - or across the room (absent a gun), IMO does not warrant deadly force. Just the society I prefer to live in.

Well, he should have armed himself if he’s going to threaten to decorate his saloon the Capitol grounds with my friend our elected officials.

The insurgents weren’t just shouting threats – they were also attempting to break down barricaded doors, and force their way into the chamber. If they were only shouting, that might be different, but my understanding is that, while shouting, they were also violently attempting to gain entry to a room, likely despite orders to desist from law enforcement members in the room.

Also, the Capitol Police officer who died as a result of injuries during the insurrection attempt was not shot, he was beaten. Not carrying a firearm does not necessarily make one “unarmed.”

Yeah - so I have NO PROBLEM w/ anyone situated similarly to the dead woman being shot. The yahoos strolling thru the statue hall or sitting in Pelosi’s chair, not so much.

If the damned cops had decided to take a stand at the barricades, or the Capitol doors, I might feel differently. Once the cops essentially abandoned the perimeter, I do not think trespassing and shouting unpleasantries merits a death penalty.

I’m just stopping short of approving of indiscriminate killing of everyone who crossed the threshold.

As a privileged older white guy, I have a hard time imagining there being sufficient justification for denying an arguably lawful order from a cop. (Unfortunately, many blacks have good reason to feel otherwise.) But I think it appropriate that there are great restrictions on LEOs’ use of force - even to stop fleeing suspects. “Stop or I’ll shoot” can be problematic if applied too widely.

Without the use of potentially lethal force or the actual use of deadly force how exactly do “the damned cops” take a stand against dozens, if not hundreds of people that have made it clear they are not going to follow the cops’ orders?
“STOP or I’ll say STOP again!”

I dunno - close and lock the doors?

The scenes at the barricades boggled my mind. As I understand it, the orders were to NOT use deadly force. Any number of scenes I saw - of people pushing, punching, spraying cops would clearly warrant an escalation of the force used - probably including guns.

Do you agree that the cops really bungled the preparation for this? I’m a little uncomfortable with the idea the cops poor planning should result in otherwise avoidable civilian deaths. You are certainly free to feel differently.

Curiously, we require airlines to have cockpit doors than can’t easily be breached but the doors that lead of the House require makeshift barricades.

Of course that it should be possible to, with little effort, break a window and climb into any government building should boggle one’s mind.

I don’t know how you prepare for something that, clearly, some people wish to make possible.

“Kill Mike Pence” is what I heard (or thought I heard).

Combined with trying to break into the room that threatened people are in – and clearly being on the point of succeeding at doing so?

It’s entirely possible to kill somebody without having a gun.

– or, I note, what kenobi_65 said; on both points.

That part, I’ll agree with.

Doesn’t work when people make serious efforts to break them down. At least, not on those doors, which apparently weren’t made to stand up to such efforts.

I couldn’t figure out what they were shouting; but I’ve seen “hang Mike Pence” reported. Maybe both were shouted at different times or by different people.

I agree with you. However, IMO, when a shouting mob started trying to bash their way into congressional chambers, they had gone well past the above, and LEOs were within their authority to treat said mob as a threat to life and limb of the occupants of the chambers.

It surprised me to see just how non-secure and non-hardened the Capitol actually was. I imagine that that will now change.

In my lifetime, Presidents routinely waded into unvetted, unrestricted, and unsearched crowds. In the lifetime of anyone old enough to post here, and to some extent up to January 6, Senators and Representatives did so.

I’m afraid that what remains of that is going to change. It probably has to; but it’s really sad that it has to.

…I think we need to recognize the distinction between “what should have happened” and “what did happen.” What should have happened was the the perimeter shouldn’t have been breached. But the police didn’t have the numbers. It turned into a series of tactical retreats and once that started to happen it was inevitable they would fall back to the Capitol.

During the BLM protests we saw reporters being casually shot by pepperball guns for walking onto the road. We saw none of that sort of equipment deployed here. The Capitol police were so woefully underprepared. Not enough riot control equipment. Not enough bodies. If they had enough gear and if they had enough personnel then the line probably would have held. They didn’t.

As for shooting people once they entered the Capitol? I’m sure that somewhere in the standard playbook shooting someone breaching the Capitol would have been procedure. But I very much doubt they had a playbook for this. Institutional blindness. The police on the ground were facing a scenario they hadn’t trained for, they hadn’t “war gamed”. And the “enemy” wasn’t one they were thought they were going to going up against. This wasn’t BLM or “Antifa.” These weren’t “others.” Reports from some police allege command and control was essentially missing in action. And of course we have the stories alleging the rioters had help from withn.

So I understand perfectly why they didn’t open fire once people breached the Capitol. In these circumstances it would have been the wrong thing to do (although the shooting that did occur on the day was completely justified).

It would have been the wrong thing for them because as soon as they ran out of bullets the mob would have ripped them to pieces with their bare hands … and at least some of those cops clearly understood that.

Yep, those who stayed outside the building- as long as they didnt commit violent acts or bring illegal weapons- should at most be cited. They did have a constitutional right … to an extent.

Once they started breaking in, I would give a hard pass to any cop who started shooting.

Mind you, I saw some of those crowd scenes and it certainly looked to me like some unwilling protestors were being swept along by the violent insurrectionists. So, perhaps indiscriminate spraying with automatic weapons might be a bit much.

Ethical question- can one “kill” a robot?

The insurrectionists didn’t break down the doors. They walked right through them, because they were open.

Some of them were, yes. The person who got shot was in process of breaking through one that wasn’t.

Only in movies does a gang of untrained people press on through gunfire. In real life, they run when sustained gunfire starts.

It would have been a dreadful bloodbath so it’s good it didn’t happen but, no, they would not have continued advancing.