by Julie Kelly
“My lawyer has given me names of books and movies to help me see what life is like for others in our country. I’ve learned that even though we live in a wonderful country things still need to improve. People of all colors should feel as safe as I do to walk down the street.”
That passage is part book report, part white privilege mea culpa submitted to a federal court this month by Anna Morgan-Lloyd, one of the more than 500 Americans arrested for her involvement in the events at the U.S. Capitol on January 6. The 49-year-old grandmother of five from southern Indiana was charged with four counts of trespassing and disorderly conduct even though she walked through an open door and was inside the building for about five minutes. She was ratted out to the FBI by a county worker who saw her January 6 posts on Facebook.
On Wednesday, Lloyd, who has a clean criminal record, pleaded guilty to one count of “parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building” – but not before she consented to undergo a reeducation exercise at the urging of her court-appointed lawyer. (Like many January 6 defendants, Lloyd does not have the means to hire a private attorney.)
It’s safe to say Heather Shaner, a D.C.-based criminal defense attorney representing a handful of January 6 protesters, does not share the political beliefs of her Capitol clients, which is why she’s forcing them to read books and watch movies highlighting dark chapters in U.S. history.
In an interview with Huffington Post, Shaner explained her belief that “this is the most wonderful country in the world, it’s been great for all kinds of immigrant groups, except for the fact that it was born of genocide of the Native Americans and the enslavement of people.”
Shaner’s legal captives are learning the hard way what the government will do when one resists their commands to comply. Not only have their personal lives been shattered, finances depleted, and reputations destroyed by an abusive Justice Department investigation, Shaner’s clients must be indoctrinated with leftist propaganda about America’s alleged systemic racism.
The purge of the populist mindset is underway, courtesy of the fetid Beltway judicial system and the Joe Biden regime. Judges routinely lecture January 6 defendants about the wrongthink of a “stolen election” while prosecutors openly mock their political beliefs, including home schooling and gun ownership.
“I have had many political and ethical discussions with Anna Lloyd,” Shaner wrote in her motion agreeing to the plea and probation for Lloyd. “I tendered a booklist to her. She has read Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, Just Mercy, and Schindler’s List to educate herself about ‘government policy’ toward Native Americans, African Americans and European Jews. We have discussed the books and also about the responsibility of an individual when confronting ‘wrong.’”
Shaner also told the court that Lloyd watched the “Burning Tulsa” documentary on the History Channel as well as “Mudbound,” a story of two families, one black and one white, living on the same property after World War II.
On the face of it, there’s nothing wrong with watching or reading any of Shaner’s “booklist.” What is very wrong is a taxpayer-paid attorney – one who is supposed to fight the government’s charges related to January 6, not play along with its phony depiction that “white supremacists” attacked the Capitol – using her authority to reprogram the political views of people she is supposed to be defending. The presumption of racist beliefs is automatic.
But it all worked. Lloyd changed her opinion on the death penalty; in her review of Schindler’s List that was submitted to the court, she lamented that “my Son-In-Law doesn’t believe the Holocaust happened as it did.” She admitted that she’s “lived a sheltered life and truly haven’t experienced life the way many have.”
Her attorney and the government seem pleased with Lloyd’s reformation. “Though she supported the past president in January, she totally accepts President Biden as the leader of our country,” Shaner wrote to the court. “She has worked hard to come to terms with what she believed before January 6th, 2021 and what she has learned since then.”
And although prosecutors condemned her “ill-considered and misguided commentary” that described January 6 as an “exciting day” and which recalled that the participants were “patriots” instead of rioters, they nonetheless agreed to a sentence of three years probation instead of six months in jail – she spent two nights behind bars after she turned herself in – and a $500 fine. She also cannot own a firearm while on probation. (Judge Royce Lamberth, a Reagan appointee, suggested he was giving her a “break” by agreeing to a plea deal.)
During her sentencing hearing on Wednesday, Lloyd broke down while apologizing for her actions. “I apologize to the court, to the American people, to my family,” she told Lamberth. “I was there to support Trump peacefully and am ashamed that it became a savage display of violence.” She said she’s never experienced racial negativity but “realizes many people do.” She was not charged with any racially motivated crime.
The Justice Department pushed back on Shaner’s attempts to reprogram her clients. “We don’t prosecute people based on their beliefs,” Joshua Rothstein, the assistant U.S. attorney handling Lloyd’s case, said in court Wednesday.
Ah, if only that were true. Nearly every charging document filed by Joe Biden’s Justice Department in the Capitol breach probe mentions the defendant’s belief about the 2020 presidential election as evidence of wrongdoing.
Here’s just one example in a court filing in the case of Jessica Watkins, an Oath Keeper who has been behind bars since January after the government successfully argued for her pre-trial detention. “There is no new or material information that casts the defendant in any less dangerous of a light than when this Court decided to detain her approximately one month ago,” prosecutors wrote in March. “The information advanced by the defendant to support her motion [for release] does nothing to undermine her extremist and violent views regarding how to address what she believed to be a fraudulent election.” (Emphasis added.)
The entire January 6 investigation is an attempt to prosecute people based on their beliefs. Those who purge their views and admit their wrongthink will be given mercy. Those who don’t will pay dearly.
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Julie Kelly is a political commentator and senior contributor to American Greatness. She is the author of Disloyal Opposition: How the NeverTrump Right Tried―And Failed―To Take Down the President. Her past work can be found at The Federalist and National Review. She also has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, The Hill, Chicago Tribune, Forbes, and Genetic Literacy Project. She is the co-host of ‘Happy Hour podcast with Julie and Liz.’ She is a graduate of Eastern Illinois University and lives in suburban Chicago with her husband and two daughters.
Photo “Jan. 06 by Brett Davis CC 2.0.