Brief Reflections on Anger and Justice

On Monday, I watched a segment on Tucker Carlson featuring Thomas Caldwell and his wife, who attended the January 6 protest.

Caldwell is a disabled veteran, and he and his wife went to the event simply to see Trump speak. They were not involved in any rioting. Caldwell was not a member of the Oath Keepers, or any of these other FBI-backed organizations. And yet, days after the January 6 event, Caldwell’s family farm was raided by a team of armed government thugs.

Julie Kelly has a very good piece about this up on American Greatness. From it:

Caldwell, 66, clad only in his underwear, went to see what was happening outside his Virginia farm. “There was a full SWAT team, armored vehicles with a battering ram, and people screaming at me,” Caldwell told me during a lengthy phone interview on September 21. “People who looked like stormtroopers were pointing M4 weapons at me, covering me with red [laser] dots.”

Agents demanded that Caldwell, a former lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy who suffers from debilitating service-related spinal injuries, come outside and lay down in the grass.

“Someone grabbed my legs and dragged me through the grass. They threw me face down on the hood of the car, kicked my legs apart, put a chain around my waist and put me in handcuffs.” Caldwell said he looked up to see Sharon, his wife of 22 years, dressed in her nightgown holding her hands up with a sock in either hand. She, too, was covered in red dots from the weapons aimed at her. Sharon, 61, begged to put on her socks before they forced her outside in the cold. “I said a prayer, ‘Father, please don’t let them kill my wife,’” Caldwell said through sobs.

Caldwell was dragged to Washington, and placed in solitary confinement for 49 days in the special political prison that the feds and Capitol Police are running for “domestic terrorists.” He reports the same kind of sadistic treatment from the guards that others have reported, where reportedly, all of the guards are black.

Caldwell was eventually released, when the court agreed that there was no evidence that he was even a member of the Oath Keepers, let alone that he’d “planned an attack.”

However, the feds are continuing to charge him with – you know, whatever – and he explained that they are on the verge of having to sell their family farm to pay for the legal bills that are piling up. Choking back tears, Mrs. Caldwell held up a sign for their website, and asked for support.

Sitting there watching this man and his wife on Tucker, seeing how they remind me so much of my own parents, or the neighbors in the suburbs I grew up in, and imagining such people being subjected to this treatment, I became angry.

My head filled with images of every single person involved in doing this to this man, from the highest level to the lowest, being blindfolded and marched into the woods, Pol Pot style, forced to kneel in front of a pit, and shot in the back of the head before being unceremoniously kicked into the mass grave.

I noted that my teeth were grinding.

I noted my anger, and noted that it was really a cover for the sadness I feel at the suffering that is being brought down on good people as a result of this evil that we’ve allowed to overtake our country.

I relaxed.

After relaxing, I realized that indeed, the people responsible for doing this to our country – and all of those who were cooperating and “just following orders” – need to be made to pay for these crimes. In most cases, the punishment should be death.

However, letting that anger take hold of me, and allowing it to drive me, would not be beneficial to me or my own agenda. The fact that these people deserve to die is not related to my anger – it is a matter of justice and of simple common sense. And I do not benefit in any way personally from being angry.

Related: Emotional Outbursts are Not Masculine

Our brains naturally produce anger. There are chemicals that cause this reaction. But the purpose of this is simply to protect us in moments of potential weakness. It is not intended to be embraced as a driving force of our personal psychology. Embracing the anger leads to erratic, emotional, stupid, and feminine behavior.

The driving force behind our actions has to be a sense of right and wrong, and a desire for justice to be served. Anger is a fleeting emotion, while justice is at the core of the human order, both physically and spiritually.

Anger is a poor replacement for a sense of justice. The fact that anger sometimes overlaps with a desire for justice doesn’t change that. As we see in women and emotionally unstable and feminized men, anger certainly does not always or even usually correlate with a sense of justice.

Anger leads no more to justice than eating everything that tastes good leads to a healthy body. What leads to a healthy body is discipline and self-respect. Just so, justice is fulfilled by seeking righteousness, which is also fundamentally a matter of self-respect.

There is nothing that does more to bring my spirit calm than reminding myself that God is in control, that justice will be served, and that the people who did this to our country are going to be made to pay for that.