A brief history of headboards

A brief history of headboards

The first headboard in recorded history comes to us from hieroglyphics in the Great Pyramid of Giza. The ancient Egyptians didn’t originally use headboards, however, when the Pharaoh Khufu’s wife Henutsen found out that he was building this massive pyramid replete with extravagant his and hers burial chambers, she insisted that the rough, oblique stone slabs were not conducive to a good night’s rest, and she demanded matching headboards. Below is the hieroglyph found in the burial passage of Khufu installing the headboard on Henutsen’s bed. It’s lost to history whether that is an ancient prying tool in his hand, a pry bar of course being an absolutely critical headboard installation/removal tool, or whether it represents a stream of blood coming from his head, a result of the nearly universal injuries sustained in all headboard installations.

Of course, we now know from ancient Arabic translations of the scrolls of Turin, that it was indeed the headboard that caused Khufu to kick Henutsen out of the Great Pyramid and have her buried in a much smaller, mostly unknown pyramid called G1.

We next find mention of the use of headboards with the emperors of Rome, starting with Julius Caesar. Caesar, of course, never used a headboard in his royal villa until Cleopatra started coming over from Egypt to visit. On her first visit, she was dismayed to find that Julius slept on a simple platform elevated off the floor on goat milk crates, and on her next visit, she brought from Cairo not just a headboard, but a full sleigh-style bedframe, much to Caesars dismay. It was this bedframe that caused Caesar to not really care about the consequences, throw caution to the wind, and cross the Rubicon, going to war with his compatriots.

Shortly before Caesars death, we know that Cleopatra began having an affair with Mark Antony, and that she also insisted that a headboard be added to his bedchamber. It was, in fact, this headboard that caused Mark Antony to rule that Cleopatra and Julius’ son, Caesarion would not take over as Julius’ heir after his assassination. When Cleopatra fled back to Egypt after the ascension of Octavion, she took both headboards with her. However, the damage the headboards caused to the Roman Empire was irreversible, and, as we know, it eventually fell from glory.

The next time a headboard was used was in England in 1327. Here’s what we know from this dark period in European history:

Edward II was deposed by his wife Isabella of France, and her lover, Roger Mortimer, after Edward II refused to install a headboard on the Royal Mattress, and Mortimer promised Isabella a headboard if they could rule England together. This of course, led to Edward II’s son, Edward III leading a successful coup against Mortimer in the Hundred Years War, and to eventually lock both Mortimer and the headboard in the Tower of London where he starved to death after eating as much of the headboard as he could stomach. History lessons are short-lived however, as upon Edward III’s return from the brutal fighting of the Hundred Years War, he discovered that his wife, Philippa of Hainault had also installed a headboard on their bed. Edward III died of a stroke in 1377 while attempting to get the headboard to stop squeaking every time he shifted in his sleep.

The next Monarch to experience his lover’s insistence upon a headboard, was Henry VIII. Henry was perfectly content to sleep on a mattress pushed against the wall, and his first (and best) wife, Catherine of Aragon, was fine with that. It wasn’t until Henry shoved her to the countryside so he could hook up with Anne Boleyn, that things began to fall apart for him. Not only would the Catholic Church not allow him to divorce Catherine so he could marry Anne, Anne insisted on installing a headboard and a FULL BEDFRAME on Henry’s perfectly acceptable, completely comfortable mattress that was on the floor and shoved against the wall of the Royal Bedroom in Windsor Castle. Henry thought he was fine with it, but, like all men, he soon realized what a completely unnecessary pain in the ass it was to have to deal with a headboard and a bedframe, particularly when one has to move around to various castles and towers, so, with obvious necessity, Henry had Anne beheaded.

Obviously there are numerous other people in history who have fallen victim to their wife’s insistence on using a completely unnecessary headboard. Emperor Hirohito created a legion of Kamikaze bombers by making pilots remove and install headboards over and over until they lost the will to live. Hitler’s hatred of the Jews stemmed from the fact that they introduced the headboard to Bavaria, headboards being very useful for hiding their bags of gold. In Salem, Massachusetts, witches were identified by entering women’s bedrooms and arresting any who had a headboard on their bed. Joseph Stalin so hated headboards that he had murdered or sent to Siberia every general and politician in the Soviet Union who used a headboard, in what was originally known as The Great Purge of the Headboard Users, though it’s been shortened by historians to just The Great Purge. Osama bin Laden’s hatred of the United States and the western world in general, was not an effect of a difference of religious beliefs, but rather the United States’ insistence on exporting headboards to Muslim countries. In fact, the reason that Navy Seals were able to get the drop on Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad was because the CIA secretly dropped headboards around Pakistan with a note to please deliver to several of bin Laden’s wives, one of whom accepted delivery and had it installed without bin Laden’s knowledge. That headboard had a GPS tracker that led the Seals right to the compound.

As I sit here in frustration after the arduous task of removing the headboard from my own bed in preparation for a move, a task that has led me to have numerous malignant thoughts, I can’t help but wonder when we’ll learn the lessons of history and finally rid this society of the evils of the headboard. We know that those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it, and I worry for future generations of men who will have to install and remove these unnecessary and burdensome beasts.

Can’t we just end the madness, once and for all?

An open letter to Conservatives – from one of your own

It’s hard to be a Conservative sometimes. This is one of those times, and in reflecting on the status and future of the Republican Party, I think things are only going to get worse. The Republican Party and conservative values seem to be standing on a vast and crumbling precipice.

And, it’s all our own fault.

I’m a right-leaning centrist who was raised with conservative values. Not only do I like the things typically associated with conservatism, I like the idea of those things. I love the Second Amendment. I love the concepts of duty, patriotism, and love of God and Country. I love the idea of teaching our children and our grandchildren how to shoot guns, how to hunt, how to split wood, and how to farm. I like the idea of an honest day’s work for an honest buck. And, even though I’ve personally stepped away from nearly all of these conservative fundamentalisms, my heart and my soul are still instilled in their conceptions.

Nearly half the country holds the values I’ve mentioned above, and yet, these values, this way of life is in big trouble. It’s dying, and that impending death can be easily traced to just one person.

Donald Trump.

Now, I will accept that it’s possible that many conservative values were doomed for history’s scrap heap of failed ideals even without the influence of Donald Trump. The evolution of humanity is something that can be fought only in vain, and conservatives seem to be uniquely adept at disregarding this truism. Traditionalist notions that marriage is a covenant between God, a man, and a woman, or that a woman’s right to choose is nullified by creationism, or that America is divinely inspired and protected are all very clearly destined to fail. And conservatives seem very loathe to accept the defeat of these “ideals.” The rigidity of this type of thinking was always going to be a problem for the Republican party. These ideas are just simply not compatible with an evolving society. One need only look to Islam, a religion that is a bastion of ultra-conservatism doomed for failure, to see the bleak future of conservative Christianity. Those Imams who propagate Muslim fundamentalist ideas such as the stoning of rape victims, forced marriage, and death to infidels and sodomites are appropriately the targets of unremittent scorn and derision, and they’re not that far behind, evolutionarily speaking, ultra-conservative Christians.  

So, Trump doesn’t necessarily hold full responsibility for the downfall of the Republican party, however, his elevation to the highest office in the land will almost certainly be viewed by historians as an accelerant to our inevitable fall.

When Donald Trump stormed into politics in the 2016 elections, he seemed to be a compelling and enticing alternative to the stuffed-shirt candidates normally thrown to the top of the Republican ticket. Trump held many conservative values such as strict border control and immigration policies, a strong military, a vocal opposition to appeasement of aggressive world leaders, and a deep respect for law and order. He showed strength and conviction in his values, both good and bad, he unhesitantly tossed aside traditional notions of presidentialism and decorum. At the same time, he seemed to be somewhat a centrist on liberal ideals like gay rights and abortion. He promised to “Drain the Swamp,” and to “Make America Great Again,” slogans that were objectively amazing from a marketing perspective, even if they were lacking in substance. The tempering appointment of the more conservative traditionalist Mike Pence to the ticket, along with the anointment of arguably the most irredeemably flawed and despicable candidate to ever ascend to the top of the Democratic ticket, Hillary Clinton, made a Trump presidency an assurance.

And, like nearly half the country, I voted for him. I believed in him. I bought in to the enticing idea of a magnanimous and benevolent billionaire who would make decisions that would be for the good of the country, decisions that were business-oriented, immune to the malignant influence of corporate and foreign lobbyists. There were warning signs…plenty of them, and though I had some deep concerns, I was desperate for a candidate who was outside of the establishment, shunned even by that very establishment, and one who was quite vocal about fighting the status quo and stoppering the whirlpool of decrepit swill that Washington politics had become. Like so many of you, I hoped for change and eagerly anticipated the draining of the swamp. And, like so many of you, I was disgusted by the end result. The grifting conman, the charlatan who showed up to the pillar of democracy flashing a beautifully enticing game of three-card monte and convinced us to wager our dignity, our respect, and our future.

The Donald Trump presidency will be remembered as a massive failure, quite possibly the worst presidency in history. Right up until the election in November, Trump had a chance to cement a decent legacy. Liberals will not agree, of course, because they’re blinded by their hatred of the man they call, “The Orange Buffoon,” but Trump actually accomplished some great things in his presidency. For starters, he kept us out of any new wars, and even ended or greatly reduced the engagements of current wars, and this is something that none of his predecessors for the last few decades can lay claim to. He was successful in implementing criminal justice reform, softening the Justice Department’s stand on drug enforcement, tightening and shoring up illegal immigration, strengthening our borders, and rebuilding and refurbishing our military. However, these accomplishments will eventually be forgotten by the categorical disgrace of the last few months of his presidency.

When Trump lost the election to Biden and immediately declared that there was massive fraud, it was a first step in a dangerous direction, but not surprising in any way. He had been saying and implying for years that he would not accept a loss, and that the only way he could ever lose the election would be due to massive voter fraud. His legal team would go on to file sixty-five lawsuits trying to overturn the election. They would lose sixty-four of those cases, their one victory being overturned by the appeals court and affirmed by the state supreme court. Along the way, Trump would claim that the losses didn’t matter, that losses were necessary in order for the cases to reach the United States Supreme Court where he would win a massive victory. With six of the nine USSC Justices conservatives, three of whom were appointed by Trump himself, this didn’t seem like an impossible goal. Trump’s attorneys, consisting of a powerhouse of far-right lunatics like Lin Wood, Sidney Powell, and Rudy Giuliani, made numerous overtures that they were privy to a secret horde of stunning evidence of wrong-doing, information that would shock the world and prove that Donald Trump was the actual victor. Sidney Powell went so far as to state that she was getting ready to, “release the Kraken,” indicating she was in possession of irrefutable evidence the magnitude of which would forever tarnish the Democratic party and completely vindicate Donald Trump.

Cue the crickets.

She went on to make unfounded and easily refutable claims that the voting machines were rigged by their builders, Dominion Voting Systems, which, she claimed, was founded in Venezuela to rig votes for Hugo Chavez. Her further claims that Dominion bribed the Georgia Governor and Secretary of State (both Republicans) landed her with a $1.3 billion defamation lawsuit.

Lin Wood has claimed that Georgia Governor Kemp and SecState Raffensperger colluded and conspired with the Chinese to rig the vote for Joe Biden. He called for their imprisonment, claiming that a secret cabal of international communists, Chinese intelligence agents, and rogue Republican “never Trumper” officials contrived to steal the election from Trump whom he claims garnered a full 70% of the popular vote. Just a month ago, Wood claimed that SCOTUS Chief Justice John Roberts was involved in the death of Justice Antonin Scalia, that Roberts was a child trafficker, and that Jeffrey Epstein—who he says is still alive—can confirm all of these facts. After January 6th, when Vice President Pence certified the election results, Wood called him a child molester and called for his execution. (These comments have since been removed by Parler where they were posted.)

Why do I have to even mention these formerly fringe lunatics? Because the President of the United States listens to these dangerous fools. He believes them, encourages them, and supports them. And that fact alone is incredibly scary.

No evidence was ever presented to any court in any state that even remotely approached proof or even that of the low bar of reasonable doubt of voter fraud or election tampering. Zero credible evidence–not a shred–was ever presented, despite the pompous blustering of Trump’s high-priced legal eagles. The Supreme Court went so far as to refuse to even hear the cases, so lacking in merit that they were. In a 7-2 decision nonetheless, where the two dissenting judges, Thomas and Alito only dissented because they thought the case should have at least been allowed to be filed. Even in their dissent, they stated they would have rejected the claims and granted no relief had they heard the arguments. It was a resounding defeat of epic proportions. And this from the most conservative SCOTUS in more than 70 years!

And still, Trump carried on, shouting from every virtual and electronic rooftop that he had been wronged and defrauded, that he had won the election “by a landslide,” and that the Democrats had stolen it from him. He tweeted the following after the Supreme Court decision:

“The Supreme Court really let us down. No Wisdom! No Courage!”

Tweet after Tweet after Tweet followed, with Trump begging anybody to act illegally and find a way to overturn the results of the election. Vicious attacks against former supporters followed, and he continued his Twitter rampage by making hundreds of unfounded accusations and by repeatedly, maliciously, and intentionally lying over and over and over to the American people and to his supporters.

And, many of them started to believe it all.

If you’re one of those who fell for his con, it’s okay. It’s kind of hard to blame you. Many of you believe that Trump was anointed by God, and that his victory was actually prophesied. And if that’s true, then how else could he have lost other than the devil stepping in to interfere? The devil in this case is, of course, the Democrats. If you think I’m maybe just talking about a few fringe right-wing lunatics, I’m sorry to inform you that this is a movement in the Right that is frighteningly large, and growing. People like Anna Khait with 300,000 Twitter followers, Matt Couch with 500,000, and Jack Posobiec with over a million are preaching this and other far right nonsense to their wide audiences. Anna Khait, as I write this today, has just indicated that Trump is STILL GOING TO WIN THE ELECTION AND BE INAUGURATED TOMORROW BECAUSE GOD HAS DECLARED THIS TO BE A CERTAINTY! Her tweets have had tens of thousands of likes and thousands of retweets reaching many times her actual Twitter follower count. (Which dropped by about 50,000 after the Twitter purges last week.) Memes and images like this one are making the rounds of Twitter, being shared and retweeted over and over:

The very idea that Donald Trump is such a paragon of virtue that he is God’s chosen representative to lead the United States for two terms is so beyond comprehension that it leaves me flabbergasted. Donald Trump is, in the words of Sam Harris, “a walking bundle of sin and gore.” He’s uncouth, immoral, vain, arrogant, and a dozen other adjectives that embody the very definition of sinner. How he became the true north of the Far Right will be forever beyond my grasp.

I’ve often been worried that by voting for Democrats I’m aligning myself with the party that contains what I’ve always considered to be the most dangerous fringe group in the country, the Radical Left. People like Representative AOC who claimed that looters during the BLM riots simply wanted loaves of bread to feed their families, and Representative Ayanna Pressley who claimed that GOP congressmen who didn’t wear a mask were committing chemical warfare. The party of those who believe in diversity of all types save opinion, where intolerance reigns supreme and Cancel Culture via Critical Race Theory is the guiding light. The party that gave power to the fringe and fraudulent group, Black Lives Matter, and gave Antifa permission to rouse the rioters. The party that was just fine with mob violence until it arrived on their doorstep, spearheaded by conservatives. The party that has an insatiable appetite for division and violence—provided such violence meets its unilateral objectives. This element of the left is disgusting and frightening. However, after seeing the awakening and rising of the Quacks of the Fringe Right, I’m far more terrified of them. Raving lunatics like the attorney, Brian, who had tens of thousands of followers before Twitter finally yanked his account, who believed that Trump’s Space Force was going to activate a satellite on inauguration day and black out all communications so security forces could arrest every democrat in Washington D.C. are reigning disinformation upon feeble-minded conservatives, and they’re attracting followers in droves. QAnon and OAN driven fake news is being sourced by millions as of higher worth than true, legitimate news agencies.

These quacks of the far right are the truly scary ones. It would seem to be a no-brainer to disavow and suppress these people, yet mainstream Republicans have capitulated to them—and to their Supreme Leader, Donald Trump—at unfathomable levels.

It’s okay if you voted for Trump in 2016. It’s even okay if you voted for him in 2020, in spite of the woke telling you it’s not. We have reasons for voting the way we do. Maybe you didn’t like Joe Biden, or you believed he’s in cognitive decline. Maybe you’re sick of the left and their judgmental condemnations of all dissenting opinions. Maybe you’re afraid of leftist policies and higher taxes. If you voted for Trump, you had a reason, and that’s perfectly okay. But if you’re not at least a little bit relieved that he didn’t win, if you’re not at least a little bit glad that we won’t have an objectively dangerous and divisive lunatic at the head of the most powerful country on Earth, then you’re in a cult, unable to see through the fog that surrounds you.

Donald Trump has made a concerted effort to overthrow our democracy and burn our Constitution. There are reports that he had Oval Office meetings in the last few weeks where he considered declaring Martial Law in an effort to stop the Biden inauguration. His call to the State of Georgia trying to get them to find enough votes to give him a victory was almost certainly a violation of the law. His efforts to get Mike Pence to withhold certification of the votes in Congress, and his turning on Pence and calling him a coward when Pence refused to violate his constitutional mandate were reprehensible, unforgiveable, and beyond the pale. He is an insurrectionist by any definition of the term, and that alone is enough reason for us conservatives to band together in disgust and outrage and to disavow this man forever.

What do we stand for as Americans in our current environment? What do we stand for as conservatives, as Republicans, as decent humans with our current belief system? Trump has desecrated our entire system of government. He sent a mob to the Capitol armed with months of lies and misinformation. The sitting President of the United States inflamed a mob of his supporters and sent them storming down Constitution Avenue as insurrectionists to disrupt the democratic process and the certifying of the vote of an election that he lost. What does that say about our democracy? What does that say to the enemies and detractors of democracy in communist countries? What does it say to suppressed people globally who might one day wish to fight for their own freedom, and might look to democracy and to the United States as an answer?

On January 6th, a shirtless Viking, a tactical guerilla with a bundle of flex cuffs, an Auschwitz emblazoned cast-off from Orange County Choppers, and a Confederate flag-waving suppressionist stalked the hallowed halls of the seat of our democracy hunting down the Vice President of the United States and the Speaker of the House of Representatives like some crazed, Stephen King inspired, dystopian version of The Village People, and the President of the United States implicitly and explicitly encouraged and supported this. You can sit and rightfully make claims of the left’s hypocrisy, but you can’t compare these acts to the degeneration of a BLM protest that resulted in the looting and burning of retail stores. This was completely different. This was an inspired, driven, and meticulously planned assault on our democracy and our constitution. This was an act of insurrection. It was an act of war, perpetrated on the American people by the President of the United States.

This was premeditated in every definition of the word. For years, Trump had refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power. On at least half a dozen occasions he flat-out said that the only way he could lose the election of 2020 would be through fraud. He verbally freerolled his way to this result in a meticulously planned operation. He knew that his words held power and sway over his legion of cultists in a way perhaps never before seen in the history of our democracy. And he never backed down, he never swayed in his insistency that it was impossible for him to lose legitimately despite losing every court case. The court record alone is a thoroughly resounding quashing of any insinuation of fraud and impropriety, and yet, his cult remains entranced by his lies, his deceit, and his rhetoric. If you think that Twitter was wrong to revoke the platform he used to inspire this insurrectionist, seditious mob of lunatics, then you’re just not thinking this through. With tens of millions of rabid followers who believe his every word, many of whom are knowingly deranged, he has intentionally destabilized our society for years now. Trump used Twitter to summon a mob of his followers to Washington D.C. on January 6th, and then he inflamed them and turned them loose. The ramifications of Trump’s continued access to such a powerful platform are unthinkably severe.

The lies that Trump has disseminated and the poison that he has spread will long outlive him. Trump is maybe the kind of guy you want to hang out with. Have at your hunting camp. Shoot a game of pool and drink whiskey with. Have over to your private island filled with underage girls. He’s Bill Clinton after a traumatic brain injury. But there has never been a man so ill-suited to serve as President of the United States.

According to this new poll by the Pew Research Center, 57% of Republicans and Republican-leaning voters want to see Trump remain a major political figure for many years to come. You have got to be out of your mind, Republicans. Whatever level of conviction you’re going to hold to your values, it has to be clear at this point that Trump is not the standard-bearer of your way of life. Unless you’re a billionaire who wants to play golf 250 days a year, Donald Trump cannot be the man to whom you will pin your hopes, your dreams, and your future. He will be the death of the Republican party, and like an apocalyptic King Midas, anything he touches will be forever inundated with his putrid stank.

We should want Trump to be convicted in his upcoming Senate impeachment trial. Otherwise he will permanently rend apart the Republican party. Should he run again in 2024 and lose in the primaries, there is literally nothing in the history of his life, or his term in office that would indicate he will take that loss gracefully and fade silently into the night. Among allegations of further voter fraud and tampering by the RNC, he will surely splinter the GOP and strike out as an independent, a move that will assure a fractured base of conservatives for decades to come. The future of the Republican party depends on Trump disappearing from the limelight forever.

Conservatives created the monster that is Donald Trump. And then we lost control of that monster. We have been manipulated by a madman, a cretin of the most vile kind. It’s up to us to reign him in by disavowing him, by admitting that we were wrong, and by accepting the punishment that is Democratic governance of our country for the foreseeable future. We took our chance, loaded up on the pass line, and rolled snake eyes. And now, the marker has come due, and it’s time to pay it with a smile on our faces. Tomorrow, Joe Biden will be sworn in as the 46th President of the United States. Donald Trump will be at his home in Florida when it happens, his petty, petulant vindictiveness shining through brightly in his refusal to meet Biden at the White House and welcome him to his new home like tradition and civility demands. Trump is a disgusting human being, and it’s time we rise up and make sure that America knows that we acknowledge it.

Our country is shattered. Our division has never been wider. It’s up to us to bring it back. On our current trajectory, we are headed toward civil war, and that serves no greater good.

A case for invoking the 25th amendment

In the early afternoon hours of December 23rd, 2020, President Trump held a meeting in the Oval Office with Vice President Mike Pence. The meeting lasted for just over an hour and, shortly thereafter, President Trump departed the White House to head to Florida for the holidays. What was said in that private shadowy meeting is unknown, but it’s not too difficult to speculate on the nature of what could have been so vital for Trump to have spent the hour prior to his vacation in a hastily convened and unscheduled meeting with the vice president. After all, the president had been almost maniacally focused for the past two months on absolutely nothing but overturning the results of the election.

Whatever was discussed between the two during that long meeting, and whether or not Trump spent that hour pressuring Mike Pence to engineer a coup, only the vice president knows, however, we do know that shortly after that meeting Trump became focused on the path to victory running through Mike Pence’s role as President of the Senate. Trump’s earlier efforts that included scores of court challenges in numerous states had failed. So had his seditious call with Brad Raffensperger, the Georgia Secretary of State, the audio of which was recorded and publicly released. (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/03/us/politics/trump-raffensperger-georgia-call-transcript.html)

Aboard Air Force One, just after his meeting with Pence, Trump retweeted a message from one of his supporters—since deleted—stating that Pence had the power to unilaterally refuse to certify the electoral college results. At a rally in Georgia on January 3rd, Trump gave the following comments:

“I hope Mike Pence comes through for us, I have to tell you. I hope that our great vice president, our great vice president comes through for us. He’s a great guy, because if he doesn’t come through, I won’t like him quite as much.”

Trump continuously pressured Pence to act during his more than 75-minute speech to his crowd of supporters, saying, “If Mike Pence does the right thing, we win the election. All Vice President Pence has to do is send it back to the states to recertify and we become president and you are the happiest people.” He later stated it again: “Mike Pence is going to have to come through for us. And if he doesn’t, it’s a sad day for our country.”

He also, of course, sent several implicit Tweets with the same desperate and extreme pressuring message:

Trump’s statements and the underlying threats, both implied and explicit, and likely the long meeting in the Oval Office clearly resulted in the vice president holding deep and ponderous meetings with his staff and attorneys. On January 6th, just moments before calling the joint session of congress to order to begin the certification process, Pence released this three-page letter to his fellow lawmakers: https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/read-pences-full-letter-saying-he-cant-claim-unilateral-authority-to-reject-electoral-votes I’ve pulled a few of the relevant passages from the letter where Pence clearly implies that he was pressured by Trump to act unilaterally and illegally:

“Vesting the Vice President with unilateral authority to decide presidential contests would be entirely antithetical to that design. As a student of history who loves the Constitution and reveres its Framers, I do not believe that the Founders of our country intended to invest the Vice President with unilateral authority to decide which electoral votes should be counted during the Joint Session of Congress, and no Vice President in American history has ever asserted such authority…It is my considered judgement that my oath to support and defend the Constitution constrains me from claiming unilateral authority to determine which electoral votes should be counted and which should not…Four years ago, surrounded by my family, I took an oath to support and defend the Constitution, which ended with the words, “So help me God.” Today I want to assure the American people that I will keep the oath I made to them and I will keep the oath I made to the Almighty God. When the Joint Session of Congress convenes today, I will do my duty to see to it that we open the certificates of the Electors of the several states, we hear objections raised by Senators and Representatives, and we count the votes of the Electoral College for President and Vice President in a manner consistent with our Constitution, laws, and history. So Help Me God.”

What drives the Vice President of the United States to pen a letter such as this one, a letter no vice president in the history of our country has ever felt a need to write? Again, we can only speculate, but you’d have to be a complete moron to think that Pence’s motivation was anything but a response to the considerable pressure being applied from above.

Shortly after the Vice President gave his speech and opened proceedings and the letter to congress was made public, Trump tweeted the following:

“Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!”

Trump then, in a petulant, revenge-driven storm of anger and pettiness, proceeded to ban Mike Pence’s Chief of Staff, Marc Short from stepping foot into the West Wing. Twitter has since deleted the above Tweet, claiming that it was used to incite violence, namely the angry mob that stormed down Constitution Avenue and breached the Capitol—something that hasn’t been done since the British army managed it in 1814—in an attempt to halt the constitutional process and to forcibly interfere in our revered democracy, rioting and causing destruction that resulted in one rioter being trampled to death and another being killed by the Capitol Police.

And this death and destruction lies at the feet of the President of the United States, who urged this angry mob forward on their mission with a speech outside the White House minutes before.

“We are going to walk down…to the Capitol…You’ll never take back our country with weakness, you have to show strength, you have to be strong.”

Trump shoved these protestors—minions and puppets whom he has been inflaming for the last two months by plying them with lies about treachery, theft, and deceit in the election—down the street to the Capitol, inciting them into a mob and turning them into insurgents before their march toward their destiny with death and destruction.

Even afterwards, when Republican leaders like Mitch McConnell and even the previously ardent Trump supporter, Lindsay Graham were hastily distancing themselves from the mayhem of this horror of a presidency, denouncing the actions of Trump and the mob, and world leaders were issuing statements of outrage and disgust, Trump still couldn’t find it in himself to show even a reflection of remorse. He gave a televised statement outside the White House urging the protestors to quit and to go home, ending it with a message that he feels their pain, that the election was fraudulent. “Go home. We love you. You’re very special. I know how you feel.” This was in stark contrast to his message to rioters from this summer whom he called “dangerous scum” and upon whom he urged the Justice Department to convict with mandatory sentences of ten years in prison. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sma-oAJv91o

Former presidents leant their voices in disgust of the deplorable mayhem orchestrated by their successor. Obama said, “History will rightly remember today’s violence at the Capitol, incited by a sitting president who has continued to baselessly lie about the outcome of a lawful election, as a moment of great dishonor and shame for our nation. But we’d be kidding ourselves if we treated it as a total surprise.”

George W. Bush, the only living former Republican president showed his disgust as well: “This is how election results are disputed in a banana republic — not our democratic republic…I am appalled by the reckless behavior of some political leaders since the election and by the lack of respect shown today for our institutions, our traditions, and our law enforcement. The violent assault on the Capitol — and disruption of a Constitutionally-mandated meeting of Congress — was undertaken by people whose passions have been inflamed by falsehoods and false hopes.”

Since his reckless and seditious actions, and the subsequent banning by Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram of his ability to post, Trump’s administration seems to be falling apart. Trump’s aide, Dan Scavino, had to send a message via Twitter from the president in the very early hours of this morning, a Tweet that wasn’t even sent from his public account, but rather from his personal account. White House staffers were caught off-guard, completely unaware of the statement that Trump had made through Scavino.

The President of the United States pressured his vice president to subvert our democracy and orchestrate an illegal coup to overturn the results of a fair and free election. When that didn’t work, he gathered an army of supporters, incited them into an angry mob, and sent them marching down Constitution Avenue in a seditious and riotous horde. These actions are treasonous and deplorable, and although the proof of Trump’s criminal malfeasance may not be enough for a court of law, the circumstantial evidence is overwhelming, and that is maddening and terrifying.

Luckily, the constitution doesn’t require proof in a court of law. Mike Pence needs only suspect Donald Trump of perpetrating these crimes. And Pence has the lawful authority vested by the Constitution to act on these suspicions.

The 25th amendment provides for the president to be removed from power. Although the 25th amendment has been invoked several times in the history of our country, most recently by George W. Bush on two occasions when he was undergoing a surgical procedure, section four of the amendment has never been invoked.  Section four of the 25th amendment reads as follows:

Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.

Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive department or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit within four days to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. Thereupon Congress shall decide the issue, assembling within forty-eight hours for that purpose if not in session. If the Congress, within twenty-one days after receipt of the latter written declaration, or, if Congress is not in session, within twenty-one days after Congress is required to assemble, determines by two-thirds vote of both Houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office.

Section four requires only that the vice president and the majority of the president’s cabinet (currently 15 members, pending resignations that are coming fast and furious as the inner circle flees the floundering ship) to agree that the president is unfit to lead. If Mike Pence can convince just eight cabinet members that Trump isn’t fit to serve the remainder of his term, they need only deliver a signed letter stating that to the President pro tempore of the Senate (currently Chuck Grassley) and the Speaker of the House (currently Nancy Pelosi), and the vice president is immediately vested with the power of the presidency.

That’s it.

Trump can fight it, but the Senate wouldn’t even have to hold a vote. They have 21 days to even assemble and vote on the matter, and by that time, Biden will have been inaugurated and Pence will have turned over the reins of power.

President Trump was the architect and orchestrator of one of the most notorious days in the history of our country. It’s time for Mike Pence and the Trump cabinet to step forward and take a stand. It’s time for them to say enough is enough.

It’s time to invoke section four of the twenty-fifth amendment.