January 6, 2021: First Person Account by Robert Socha
January 6, I trekked to the Nation’s capital to engage my first amendment right to peacefully assemble and petition my government for a redress of grievances. This particular grievance being the failure of our elected servants to investigate the irregularities in the election process, especially in critical “swing” states that caused them, without exception, to swing toward the Biden/Harris ticket.
The Martin Luther King Jr. memorial welcomed our buses’ arrival at 6:30 AM. It is curious that of all the quotes they attributed to Reverend King, I didn’t see one directly quoting scripture, but I digress.
It took some time to get 100 people organized and walk to the ellipse. Of course, we were free to go as we pleased, meeting back to board for the trip home by 6 PM. Nevertheless, our group within the group, three fathers with teenage daughters, stuck together.
We joined the line to enter the ellipse but were far too late to be considered entering that small space, so we found ourselves among the enormous overflow crowd. There were people of every persuasion amid this line, notably many Asians, who were extremely vocal in their support of limited government and keeping our country from falling into socialism’s fallacies.
In particular, one person, the man with the horns, was traversing the orderly line, about 8 AM, and screaming rhetoric. I could not decipher what he was conveying, but our eyes met for a moment, and I felt something sinister behind them. The buses’ organizers coached that there was great possibility Antifa would infiltrate our ranks disguised as supporters, and if we were to see them, not to engage. I did witness several men dressed in Kevlar helmets and military-style masks; they seemed out of place. There was militia present, to be fair, and they could have been part of one of those groups.
We had been queueing for almost an hour when we realized we were waiting in a long line to simply gather on the Mall. It was quite comical. We chose to walk across the grass and find our place to stand until the speakers began to engage the crowd.
An interesting thing happened to me because I chose to walk across the grass. My tennis shoes got wet from the dew, and the moisture penetrated my socks. With the easterly wind and 40-degree temperatures, my toes began to ache severely from the cold. And I began to complain about it until I remembered that George Washington crossed the Delaware River on December 24, 1776, and his men’s blood stained the snow as they marched, many of them barefoot, through the night to engage the enemy. Needless to emphasize, but my complaints ceased.
We decided to find a restroom and walk to the Lincoln Memorial because of the wind and cold temperatures. At least we would be moving and relieved. Notably, there were no portable johns on the Mall in any direction. The port-a-potty absence was curious because I have been to other large events on the Mall in D.C., and portable potties littered the area. In fact, when we found an open bathroom on the south end of the World War II memorial, the line for the men’s room was longer than the line for the women, and we all made it a point to emphasize the inconsistency to typical bathroom lineage.
While we walked along the reflecting pool, vivid memories of the Reverend King’s speech calling for us to judge a man by his character and not his skin color flooded my mind. Climbing the steps to Lincoln’s memorial evoked memories of our trip to Gettysburg in 2018 and the tremendous price our country paid in slavery’s abolition. (Arguments toward the “true” cause of the Civil War notwithstanding, the 13th Amendment is a direct result.) We took some time to reflect silently in the edifice and read Lincoln’s immortal Gettysburg Address and 2nd inaugural address. The justice of God flooded my soul as I read the following:
“Yet if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman’s two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword as was said three thousand years ago still it must be said, “the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. With malice toward none with charity for all, with firmness for the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive to finish the work we are in, to bind up the Nation’s wounds…”
After reflection, and wonder that the judgement of God might be calling for justice of those never born, we left the memorial wading through an unflattering protest calling for Nancy Pelosi’s resignation and made our way back to the ellipse. The crowd had grown considerably, and we waded until we found a spot with a clear line-of-sight to the large screens. We were in the midst of a sea of souls
We heard America’s mayor, Rudy Guliani, and Don Jr. speak, but the President was delayed. Wechose to walk to the U.S. Capitol Building at about 11:30 AM because I wanted to join a prayer meeting there. The others were in agreement. We thought entreating Heaven on the grounds of the government’s lawmaker’s seat would be more impactful than standing and listening to political rhetoric.
When we arrived on the capitol grounds, we joined a prayer walk around the building’s perimeter. The small band of Believers began the Jericho march just after twelve-noon.
We were walking up Independence Avenue when a lonesome jogger ran by us and uttered unfriendly epithets. His mocking statements were uncalled for, but necessary to disclose in the discourse, because less than one hour before the Capitol’s breech and in the midst of an organized protest with tens, if not hundreds of thousands of people in attendance, a local jogger (there were many such joggers I witnessed throughout the day) felt safe enough to engage in his routine and mock the people visiting in solidarity.
We arrived on the west side of the U.S. Capitol Building at about 12:30 PM and joined with some small groups engaged in worship and prayer. There were people from specific contested states praying for truth and integrity in the political process. People were worshipping the Lord in spirit and truth. There were small but sincere crowds gathered together earnestly petitioning Heaven for Liberty and Justice for all. We stood with these groups for some time and entreated the Lord.
A good friend of mine, who works for one of the Department Of Blanks, wife had contacted him, informing him of my presence in D.C. He contacted me and invited our group to visit his office and tour their facility. He instructed us to find a Metro stop and take it to his location. Unfortunately, the cell signal for my AT&T phone was inconsistent at best and the battery drained so quickly I hesitated to utilize its functionality, especially the camera and video, and had me on a bit of a wild-goose-chase finding the Metro. When we finally located the entrance and were walking toward it a couple of policemen engaged us. One of them was extremely excited and adamantly, to the point of belligerence, instructed us to turn around as there was a supposed bomb threat in the area.
I was complying but trying to ask him how to get around the threat to make it to our destination. The officer was intolerant. He would not allow me to ask him anything and kept barking orders demanding our compliance, which we were doing. As we retreated toward the Capitol, a female officer was very kind, offering advice on a path to our destination. We made it back to the corner of Independence and 1st St. SE. (Note: my friend suggested the bomb threats were manufactured to keep the protesters in an agitated state of confusion since it was so close to a Metro station that the station entrance was closed to the public.)
While trying to communicate with my friend and get some semblance of organization, a police officer guarding the National Archives pulls us aside and warns us not to go around the Capitol because Antifa has infiltrated the other side and were engaged in violent actions.
My friend from the Department of… and I were working on getting us transportation to his location.
My 15-year-old daughter makes a statement: “Oh my gosh, they are climbing the steps of the Capitol!”
We were standing on the corner and had a perfect view of the U.S. Capitol Building’s west side.
I turned around and declared, “oh my, they breached the police line and are climbing the Capitol steps.”
My daughter replied, “yeah, that is what I just said.”
We witnessed the march of “protestors” climbing the steps of the building. It was surreal. These agitators were not the peaceful, prayerful people we had engaged less than 30 minutes previously. These were provocateurs who appeared to be invited up the steps and cause confusion.
We could hear the pop of tear gas canisters and the roar of an agitated throng. It is an interesting phenomenon where regular Joe’s can get caught up in the mob mentality and engage in behavior that otherwise would not be considered acceptable. We never felt threatened or fearful that violence would find us in that corner, although emergency vehicles were whizzing by us at an alarming pace. We had no idea what was transpiring on the west side of the Capitol building.
My friend gave us instructions to meet a car at the corner of 4th and Pennsylvania SE, so we made our way to the rendezvous and escaped the melee. Once inside the office building and having passed through security, a general calm came over the group. After a chance encounter with the Department’s Secretary and photo op, we retired to my friend’s office for a late lunch and the ability to observe the events via TV. It was about 3 PM.
Returning to Reverend King’s memorial at 5:30 PM, we began to compare notes with our neighbors who rode the same busses but separated by the day’s events.
One of my good friends escorted a group of ladies who were frightened by the rumpus back to the safety of our pick-up location.
One of the young women had engaged a police officer at the Capitol and stated that although it was a bit tense, they were respectful on both sides. She was able to thank the officer for exercising restraint and allowing the protest to continue.
These are not the actions of a violent mob bent on overthrowing the halls of government. They are the actions of a discontent populace who have been silent long enough and demand the government return to its constitutional chains, especially investigating egregious election irregularities.
The violence perpetrated was by a slim minority (whom I question their affiliation) and unfortunately stained the entirety of what we were trying to accomplish; Integrity! The loss of life that day is a tragic reminder of our action’s consequences, whether they be those who engaged in the protest and broke the law or those of the elected officials who failed to act upon mountains of questionable evidence.
I do not condone violent uprisings. I do condone peaceful protests. The actions of a supermajority of Capitol protesters on January 6 were just that: peaceful; even most of those who climbed the Capitol steps.
We boarded our bus home about 6 PM and arrived just after 6 AM. There was tremendous traffic to get out of the city, and our first stop was packed with buses full of protesters from a plethora of mid-western locales.
The sated mood gave pause for reflection upon the day. Standing in that roadside gas station, I felt the day had gone awry but had accomplished its objective. We endeavored to make our voices heard that chicanery would not be tolerated and justice must prevail. Hopefully, the Capitol’s hallowed halls will echo that sentiment and enact necessary change to ensure election integrity. If not, I fear Justice will have no choice but to act in defense of Liberty and the bloodstained fields that held our nation together 150 years ago cry out for refreshing.
About the Author
Robert Socha, BIO Robert Socha (so-ha), was born in southern California. He served 5 years 3 months active duty in the United States Air Force; honorably. After his service he took an Associate’s Degree in Practical Theology, where, through his studies, developed a deep love of God and Country and sincere appreciation of the value of Liberty. Robert and his beloved wife of 21-plus years are raising 4 beautiful Texan children. They moved to Hillsdale, Michigan, in 2013, to put their children in Hillsdale Academy. Robert is a sales professional. He and his wife consider Michigan a hidden gem, and absolutely love this city and state (current political environment notwithstanding) they’ve adopted.