President Joe Biden made the assertation that the January 6th riot was the worst thing to happen to the country since the Civil War. I find this baseless and inherently devalues many moments in our nations history. While the riot that occurred on capital hill on January 6th 2021 was despicable, wrong, and nothing to be celebrated, it is a complete fabrication to say it is worse than any and all historical events that occurred between the Civil War and the present day. I have taken the liberty of listing some historical events that were clearly a much worse attack on our Republic than what transpired on January 6th 2021:
The Assassination of President Abraham Lincoln:
While undoubtedly worse than the riot in question, its addition on the list would seem to be questionable due to the assassination taking place so close to the end of the Civil War, however, the horrific assassination of our 16th President could not be left off of this list because of the dramatic post-war ramifications of the horrific event at Ford's Theatre on April 15, 1965.
1866 New Orleans Massacre:
A group of freed slaves were peacefully protesting for their right to vote assisted by Republican politicians in an effort to expand voting rights to all citizens when the Democrat Sheriff Harry Hays, a former Confederate General, deputized a posse of white officers, many of whom were ex-Confederates. The new officers fired into the "unlawful assembly." Within only 2 hours, 34 African Americans were killed and 119 were wounded. A caption from a drawing of the horrific event kept in the Library of Congress reads "This image from Harpers Weekly depicts Confederate veterans opening fire on the crowd in New Orleans. The placement of the US flag in the drawing served as a reminder to readers that some former Confederates had not yet accepted the outcome of the war."
He was the first African American elected as the Town Commissioner and Constable of the town of Graham, North Carolina. Displeased with having a black man able to police them, the local KKK drug him from his home and lynched him. This particular lynching was sighted across the nation as calls for anti-lynching legislation grew.
Financial Panic of 1973:
After Europeans began selling off American Railroad bonds there became a surplus of the bonds significantly devaluing them. Unable to sell the bonds, the railroads were unable to take out loans and were unable to pay off their debts leading to them defaulting on loans and a collapse of the American economy leading to what is seen as the first "Great Depression" for the United States.
Presidential Election of 1876:
Republican Rutherford B. Hayes is elected in a hotly contested election after an agreement is reached with the Democrats to end reconstruction and remove troops from the south. This directly leads to further issues in the south, an emboldened KKK, and directly leads to the Jim Crow era in the south and extensive discriminatory laws based on race.
The Assassination of President James A Garfield:
Due to an imagined political debt, the 20th president was shot at a train station, later dying due to infection.
The Great blizzard of 1888:
An Atlantic North West blizzard that ends in at least 400 deaths and $20 million in damages to New York city alone. To this day is one of the worst winter storms in American history.
Financial panic of 1893:
The 1890 Sherman Silver Purchase Act is widely regarded as the catalyst of this financial downturn. The US Government was required to purchase Silver to mint coins and was required to purchase it at a 16-1 to that of gold. This led to mines opening to meet government demand and soon flooded the market with silver. with an abundance of silver, it devalued and made mining barely profitable. which was fed into by the new circulation of currency being minted. This combined with major railways declaring bankruptcy and low market confidence led to a market collapse.
May Day Riots of 1894:
Due to the financial collapse, a major railroad sleeping car company was forced to fire many employees and cut the wages of those that remained. This led to a strike which halted the railroads and commerce from Chicago to the west coast. The Railroad companies asked the feds for help dealing with the strikes. an injunction was passed and federal troops were sent to assist. when the troops arrived, the strikes turned violent. As many as 30 people died and many more were injured. This directly led to the establishment of Labor Day to restore a trust between labor and the federal government.
Approximately 400 Immigrant miners marched to Lattimer, Pennsylvania to protest harsh working conditions. 86 deputies and some coal company police we armed, totaling approximately 150 armed men. They unfortunately opened fire into the crowd of strikers, instantly killing 19 men and at up to 5 more in the following days due to gunshot wounds.
An explosion of unknown origin sank the US Battleship, USS Maine, killing 260 of less than 400 Sailors stationed onboard. The explosion was used as a catalyst to begin the Spanish-American war.
The Spanish-American War:
Despite being on all accounts a major victory for the United States, the life lost in this war was still more consequential than that of the January 6th riot, it is therefore included on this list.
The Assassination of President William McKinley:
The 3rd Presidential assassination on this list. He perished of gangrene initially undetected after being shot twice by an anarchist assailant that claimed the President was the head of a corrupt government. President McKinley is quoted of saying "Be careful of how you tell my wife."
The Great Baltimore Fire:
Believed to be started by a discarded cigarette in a basement, a small fire is quickly whipped up into an incontrollable blaze. After 31 hours 1500 Buildings were leveled, 1000 were severely damaged, property loss was estimated at $100 million. Miraculously, the official reports claim no loss of life, however a few minor publications do claim one person passing away but considering the size and scope of the fire, still would seem to be miraculous.
The San Francisco Earthquake:
Listed as one of the worst earthquakes ever recorded. A 7.8 magnitude earthquake shook San Francisco and cased a blazing fire to erupt as well. official reports have the death toll at about 700 people. This is now thought to be underestimated by a factor of 3 or 4. 189 of the deaths were reported outside of the San Francisco area.
The Election of Woodrow Wilson:
The proverbial father of modern progressives. His writings show the foundations to the toxic, leftist ideology that plagues us to date. As a side note he also had the privilege of showing the first film watched in the white house, an honor he completely botched by showing "Birth of a nation" a KKK film adapted from the book The Clansman: An Historical Romance of the Ku Klux Klan. This is something I have found particularly troubling since I learned bout it.
World War I:
With approximately 40 million casualties as a result of the "War to end all Wars". A dramatic, and now nearly forgotten war, unlike any before it. Unfortunately its nickname would not stand the test of time, as many of the post-war policies lead directly to the rise of Nazism in Germany and eventually to the Second World War.
1919 Anarchist Bombings:
Seven US major cities were rocked by explosions from bombs made in a concentrated effort by anarchists inspired by Luigi Galleani. His followers mailed, and set more bombs after the initial bombings. Their efforts contributed greatly towards the red scare.
The Great Depression:
Because of rampant government intervention, a complete loss of trust in the market, a run on the banks, and a lack of failsafe's to prevent market freefall, the country was hit hard by the onset of the worst economic downturn in our nations history. One the nation would not fully recover from until the end of the second World War.
Memorial Day Massacre:
Police officers shoot and kill 4 unarmed protesters on memorial day 1937. They were protesting over labor disputes for mining and due to heightened tensions because of the red scare and the general threat of communism largely led to the workers deaths.
"December 7th, 1941, a date which shall live in infamy, when the United States was suddenly and deliberately attacked by Naval and Air force's of the Empire of Japan." The attack on Pearl Harbor was absolutely devastating, Japanese forces managed to destroy or damage nearly 20 American naval vessels, including eight battleships, and over 300 airplanes. More than 2,400 Americans died in the attack, including civilians, while another 1,000 people were wounded while severely crippling our Pacific fleet. It was only the sobering reality of the severity of the attack that woke the sleeping giant of the United States, quickly rebuilding the pacific fleet and formally entering the second World War.
World War II:
The Rise of socialism, Communism, Fascism, and the growing threat of a militaristic Germany, Italy, and Japan forced the second World War. Far more memorable and devastating than the first and usually one of the only historical events captivated in most peoples consciousness. One of the many reasons why everything is compared to Nazi ideology and platitudes. Casualties for the war are estimated at approximately 85 million, this varies widely due to up to 50 million casualties being from China alone, as Imperial Japan was nearly as, if not just as, brutal to the Chinese as the Nazis were to the Jews.
The Cold War:
A long, drawn out conflict that brought the world to the verge of nuclear destruction on multiple occasions. Drawn out not only over proxy wars such as Korea and Vietnam, but also over vicious rhetoric, and a battle of ideology between Communism and Freedom. One of the longest lasting and persistent threats to the Republic we have ever seen.
The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy's:
Yet another presidential assassination, This one being the most memorable in the consciousness of the United States because of it being relatively recent, it was caught on film, and the seemingly unending conspiracy theories surrounding his assassination. The Kennedy's were beloved both at home and abroad, nick-named Americas' first Royal Family, the assassination rocked the modern world and again raised the threat of communism and nuclear war as President LBJ was sworn into office.
President Lyndon B. Johnson:
The president that signed the Civil Rights act of 1964, doing so only for political capital. As a Democrat President he was able to allow the party to claim they were the party of racial justice and reportedly referred to the Civil Rights Act of 1957 as the “nigger bill” in more than one private phone conversation with Senate colleagues. And he reportedly said upon appointing African-American judge Thurgood Marshall to the Supreme Court, “Son, when I appoint a nigger to the court, I want everyone to know he’s a nigger.”
A police traffic stop, resisting arrest, a group of onlookers close by, and escalating tensions between Black civilians and the police in Watts California. In order to keep the peace the National Guard was activated. When all was done, after 6 days, 34 people were dead, 1,032 were injuries and 4,000 arrests were made in total involving 34,000 people and ending in the destruction of 1,000 buildings including a mosque, totaling $40 million in damages.
The Selma to Montgomery March:
When a group of African-Americans, including the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., marched from Selma to the state capital of Montgomery to protest unfair voting practices, they were viciously and brutally attacked by local authorities and white vigilante groups. This outrageous scene drew national attention to the need for the voting protection act and for increased pressure towards equal treatment for all Americans. The harrowing tale of this March is told very well in the Movie "Selma" which I would recommend if you have not seen it.
The Assassination of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.:
While standing on the second floor balcony at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Dr. King was shot in the neck and killed. The senseless act lead to rioting and violent protest around the nation to what came as such a shock. His passing also fast-tracked the passage of the final civil rights bill of the era.
Kent State University Shootings:
Anti-Vietnam protests at Kent State were taking place when National Guardsmen opened fire into the crowd killing 4 and injuring 9. This continued splitting tensions over an already tense issue in the country of the Vietnam war. It is in my opinion, the publicity surrounding these events has made politicians unwilling to utilize the National Guard for protests on the verge of rioting to ensure the continued lawfulness of the assembly, and even their inability to use them when rioting has broken out.
Roe vs Wade:
In securing a "Woman's right to chose" the supreme court ruled on a decision that has lead to A total of 619,591 abortions in 2018 alone, the most recent numbers I am able to find from the CDC. Not to mention, abortion providers Planned Parenthood is specifically targeting low income areas and predominately minority areas. Seeing the number of babies that never get outside the womb is absolutely heart breaking and will be what this society will be judged on by future generations as we see slavery and racism of the past. I am planning on doing a future article on the connection between slave holders arguments and the arguments of the pro abortion crowd.
The most damaging thing for the republic from the Watergate scandal is the idea the President of the United States is able to resign, That it is somehow a simple job you can throw the towel in at. A job that if you get caught doing something wrong you can just shrug, say sorry, and walk off, job done.
Attempted Assassination of President Ronald Reagan:
The would-be assassin attempted to shoot the president to impress actress Jodie Foster, who in hindsight may deserve a spot on this list. Foster while inadvertently motivating attempted assassins and advertently posing for a photograph sitting on a Vietnamese Anti-Aircraft gun, used to shoot down US planes is certainly more damaging to the country than anything the capital rioters can claim. Half jokes aside, attempted assassinations certainly more impactful than what occurred on January 6th.
Space Shuttle Challenger Disaster:
73 seconds after take off, the entire county, including the elementary classroom of one of the astronauts, watched in horror as the shuttle broke apart. A rattling day in US history as what is probably the most well known space-related disaster. This impacts us even to this day as we continue Ad Astra, to the stars.
Years of bomb making, and being directly responsible for the killing of 3 Americans and injuring nearly 2 dozen more. The Unabomber sent letters and threats to blow up not only buildings, but commercial flights as well. He was able to sow fear into the hearts of American's for nearly 20 years.
The Persian Gulf War:
Although short, it was still an operation that resulted in 298 US Deaths as listed by the Defense Casualty Analysis System.
1993 World Trade Center Bombing:
After a van exploded in a parking garage in the North Word Trade Center tower, it became clear to the world that terrorism was a growing problem, one that was not necessarily restricted to borders of origin. This attack killed 6 and injured over 1,000.
Oklahoma City Bombing:
The most deadly act of homegrown terrorism in US History including 168 souls lost, including 19 children, with several hundred more injured. Nearly 300 buildings destroyed or damaged. This was also one of the FBI's most extensive criminal investigations. By the end they had conducted more than 28,000 interviews, followed some 43,000 investigative leads, amassed three-and-a-half tons of evidence, and reviewed nearly a billion pieces of information to capture the culprit.
Suicide Bombing of the USS Cole:
The attack on the Cole while she was moored in a foreign port drastically changed how the US Armed forces saw security. This attack is directly responsible for constant increased security measures, fire prevention strategies, and countless hours of training for the US Navy Alone.
September 11th 2001:
The Worst attack on US Soil since December 7th 1941. Ask anyone old enough to understand what was going on during that harrowing day and they can tell you exactly what they were doing and who they were with during this attack. There is not an American alive that has not seen the videos of the plane striking the second tower and the photographs of the carnage from that horrific day. Never Forget means just that. Beacons shine bright into the New York skyline where the towers once stood. This moment is etched into the American consciousness today, the sentiments and unity have faded, I only pray it does not take such a drastic and horrific even to bring the unity back.
The last thing on the list, the hyper-politized virus to come from china with as many conspiracy theories of how it propagated as there were government officials attempting to overreach with their power. Everything that COVID caused, including the rampant rioting nation wide, is what led to January 6th 2021. Not only were the other riots worse, but it was all far more consequential in its attack on American democracy by attempting to push forward their own mob rule.
In conclusion, these were a few historical events I either found or knew about previously that I believe we can all agree are clearly more of an attack on The Republic then the January 6th riot on Capital Hill.
"Truthful lips endure forever, but a lying tongue is but for a moment."
Financial panic of 1973 https://home.treasury.gov/about/history/freedmans-bank-building/financial-panic-of-1873
James A. Garfield's Assassination https://www.history.com/news/the-assassination-of-president-james-a-garfield
The Great Blizzard of 1888 https://www.britannica.com/event/Great-Blizzard-of-1888
Financial Panic of 1893 https://www.historylink.org/file/20874
May Day riots of 1894 https://www.history.com/news/labor-day-pullman-railway-strike-origins
The Spanish-American war https://www.history.com/topics/early-20th-century-us/spanish-american-war
William McKinley's assassination https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/president-william-mckinley-is-shot\
The Great Baltimore Fire https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/the-great-baltimore-fire-begins
The San Francisco Earthquake https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/events/1906calif/18april/
Woodrow Wilson https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0004972/
Watts Riots https://www.history.com/topics/1960s/watts-riots
The Selma to Montgomery March https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/selma-montgomery-march
The Assassination of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/martin-luther-king-jr-assassination
Kent State Shootings https://www.history.com/topics/vietnam-war/kent-state-shooting
The Persian Gulf War https://dcas.dmdc.osd.mil/dcas/pages/report_gulf_storm.xhtml
1993 World Trade Center Bombing https://www.state.gov/1993-world-trade-center-bombing/