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RFK Jr. clarifies that his view of Jan. 6 is the conspiratorial one

Robert
F.
Kennedy
Jr.’s
approach
to
national
politics
is
uncomplicated.
Whatever
the
conventional
wisdom

however
sound
it
might
be
and
no
matter
the
scale
of
the
evidence
supporting
it

he’s
against
it.
If
his
last
name
were
Smith,
he’d
have
a
fairly
popular
podcast
and
a
line
of
nutritional
supplements.
But
he
was
born
into
a
different
industry.

End
of
carousel

On
Thursday,
his
scattershot
presidential
bid
was
ruffled
(to
the
extent
that
it
can
be)
by
a
reference
to
people
in
prison
for
having
participated
in
the
Jan.
6,
2021,
attack
on
the
U.S.
Capitol
having
been
“stripped
of
their
Constitutional
liberties.”
The
campaign
quickly

clarified

that
this
presentation,
one
that
echoes
the
views
of
his
ostensible
opponent
Donald
Trump,
was
an
error
introduced
by
“a
new
marketing
contractor.”

Kennedy
subsequently
decided
to
clarify
his
position
on
the
Capitol
riot.
In
a
statement
released
on
Friday
afternoon,
he
affirmed
that

he
broadly
agreed
with
the
position
of
his
ostensible
opponent
Donald
Trump.

“January
6
is
one
of
the
most
polarizing
topics
on
the
political
landscape,”
the
statement
begins,
which
is,
by
itself,
an
exceptional
distillation
of
Kennedy’s
approach
to
political
issues
broadly.
The
Capitol
riot
is
polarizing
because
it
is
extremely
useful
for
Trump
and
his
allies
to
obscure
and
misdirect
his
supporters
about
what
happened,
which
was
that
he
lied
about
the
election
results
and
encouraged
people
to
come
to
Washington
on
that
day
to
protest
and
then
directed
them
at
the
Capitol.
It
is
polarizing
in
the
way
that
vaccination
is
polarizing:
There
is
a
reality
and
there
is
a
surreality
and
the
two
are
necessarily
in
conflict
because
the
latter
exists
largely
as
a
source
of
conflict.

“It
is
quite
clear
that
many
of
the
January
6
protestors
broke
the
law
in
what
may
have
started
as
a
protest
but
turned
into
a
riot,”
Kennedy’s
statement
reads.
“Because
it
happened
with
the
encouragement
of
President
Trump,
and
in
the
context
of
his
delusion
that
the
election
was
stolen
from
him,
many
people
see
it
not
as
a
riot
but
as
an
insurrection.”

That
is
not
why
people
see
it
as
an
insurrection.
People
see
it

as
an
insurrection

because
it
was
an
explicit
effort
to
block
the
transition
of
power
away
from
the
guy
who
lost
the
election.
It
was
a
largely
ad
hoc
and
ultimately
unsuccessful
effort
to
do
so,
but
it
is
not
just
a
term
applied
because
[waves
hands]
Trump.

“I
have
not
examined
the
evidence
in
detail,”
the
statement
continues,
“but
reasonable
people,
including
Trump
opponents,
tell
me
there
is
little
evidence
of
a
true
insurrection.
They
observe
that
the
protestors
carried
no
weapons,
had
no
plans
or
ability
to
seize
the
reins
of
government,
and
that
Trump
himself
had
urged
them
to
protest
‘peacefully.’”

This
is
an
absolute
all-timer
of
a
cop-out.
The
guy
is
running
for
president
but
claims
that
on
the
issue
that

he
himself
describes

as
one
of
the
most
polarizing
in
politics,
he
gives
us
puppy-eyes
and
insists
that
he
simply
doesn’t
know
much
about
it.
But
what
he

does

know
is
that
other
people
tell
him
that
the
mainstream
consensus
is
wrong,
and
that’s
all
he
needs
to
hear.

What
he’s
hearing
is
incorrect.

There
were

firearms
in
the
crowd

that
day,
if
that’s
the
standard
Kennedy
requires
for
a
“true
insurrection”

but
enough
other
weapons
that
Trump

reportedly

asked
the
Secret
Service
to
skip
using
metal
detectors
for
his
speech
at
a
rally
on
the
Ellipse
that
morning
because
the
crowd
was
“not
here
to
hurt
me.”

Nor
was
the
crowd
trying
to
“seize
the
reins
of
government,”
as
Kennedy
says
he
heard;
it
was
instead
trying
to
keep
the
reins
in
Trump’s
hands,
and
did,
however
temporarily.

As
for
Trump
“urging”
the
crowd
to
be
peaceful,
that’s
a
bit
undercut
by
his
firing
them
up
during
his
speech
that
morning,
his
demand
they
attend
the
“wild”
protest
in
the
first
place

and
his
utter
indifference
to
speaking
out
against
the
violence
until
hours
after
it
began.

But,
then,
I
have

examined
the
evidence

in
detail.

“Like
many
reasonable
Americans,
I
am
concerned
about
the
possibility
that
political
objectives
motivated
the
vigor
of
the
prosecution
of
the
J6
defendants,
their
long
sentences,
and
their
harsh
treatment,”
Kennedy
continues.
“That
would
fit
a
disturbing
pattern
of
the
weaponization
of
government
agencies

the
DoJ,
the
IRS,
the
SEC,
the
FBI,
etc.

against
political
opponents.”

A
reminder
that,
earlier
this
week,
Kennedy
insisted
that
the
sitting
president
might
be
as
big
a
threat
to
democracy
as
Trump
because
Biden
censored
political
opponents
including
Kennedy

which
is

not
true
.
But
governmental
power
is
the
epitome
of
something
that
rebels
might
rebel
against,
so
Kennedy
takes
for
granted
that
it
is
a
deserving
foil.

“One
can,
as
I
do,
oppose
Donald
Trump
and
all
he
stands
for,”
the
statement
continues,
“and
still
be
disturbed
by
the
weaponization
of
government
against
him.”

Citation
needed,
as
Wikipedia
would
say.
You
see,
though,
how
immersed
in
the
Trumpian
position
Kennedy
is:
he
takes
for
granted
that
Trump
is
suffering
not
from
a
severe
bout
of
accountability
but,
instead,
from
unfair
targeting.

Kennedy
doesn’t
oppose
all
that
Trump
stands
for,
not
by
any
measure.
He,
like
Trump,
rejects
conventional
wisdom
(no
matter
how
wise)
and
authority
(however
authorized).
It’s
just
the
motive
that’s
different.
Trump
does
it
opportunistically
to
accrue
confidence
in
himself
by
eroding
his
base’s
confidence
in
everything
else.
Kennedy
does
it
because
it
is
what
he
does
and
it
is
what
has
earned
him
his
following.

The
statement
concludes
by
attempting
again
to
equate
Biden
and
Trump,
to
position
Kennedy
in
the
middle
between
the
two
candidates.
The
problem
is
that
the
middle
point
between
reality
and
surreality
is
still
surreality.

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