What a week.
1,267 miles driven
20.2 miles walkedA million memories made
And that just gets us to Thursday.
I would argue I’m more familiar with my district than any other Indiana Congressional Candidate. If it’s a political outsider you’re looking for this election it’s me. I would imagine there is no other Congressional Candidate with less ties to “The Swamp” than me. I have never even been to Washington D.C. That all changed Monday.
Missy and I decided it would be foolish to accept any job without at least walking around and becoming familiar with the area. The “First Family of IN05” spent two nights in the historic Capitol Hill District just two blocks from where I hope to be spending a lot of time come January to represent the people of Indiana’s 5th Congressional District.
We spent two afternoons on Capitol Hill. A morning on the National Mall. We walked around the Tidal Basin and West Potomac Park. We had lunch in the shade on the steps of the Thomas Jefferson Memorial in East Potomac Park. We toured the Southwest. Got as close as we could to the White House via Foggy Bottom, Downtown, and Penn Quarter. After packing up the Bus we walked around Arlington National Cemetery on our way out of town. We basically saw all of D.C.
I’m not sure what to think
Admittedly, my first trip to our Nation’s Capital came at a strange time in our history. I thought I was going to be blown away,
I thought I was going to feel overwhelmed,
I hoped Susan Brooks would meet me,
Admittedly, I have no frame of reference but DC felt strange. Eerie really. Police or security on almost every corner with automatic weapons. Facial coverings and a lot less people then I would have imagined in and around our Nation’s Capital. To me it felt more like Gilead from the Handmaid’s Tale than the romanticized version of the political center of the land of the free. The silver lining to the low crowds was how much access we had to the monuments. No lines, no rubbing elbows, no waiting to be up close and personal with our shared democratic history.
I really enjoyed the trip. I loved sharing this experience with my wife and my daughters. Walking around you could feel the history. I lost myself in all the quotes that seemed to surround us. Missy and I read these powerful words and we discussed there meanings with our daughters. Quietly, I wondered to myself why and how so very little has changed in our government since 1776, 1863, 1935, 1963, 1972…. I became infuriated with the lack of progress by our elected officials, but also emboldened heading into the last 40 days of this campaign to keep fighting for all of US for all the ideals that this country was founded upon.
We got back home early Thursday evening to find my candidate questionnaire published in the Indy Star. Had an interview on Friday with a reporter from WRTV the ABC affiliate out of Indianapolis. I spent Saturday morning at the Howard County Vietnam Veterans Reunion.
Some gave all, all gave some
It is more a welcome home celebration. I had met with HCVVO President Jim Profits earlier this year and inquired about the healing field. He invited me to come back for this event and experience it for myself and I am glad I did. As I entered the grounds I could feel a peaceful energy which helped calm my nerves. I couldn’t help but feel out of place. I was surrounded by thousands of people who had put there lives on the line for our country. As I walked around the grounds I tried to take in as much of my surroundings as I could.
A person is not really gone until they are forgottenInscription on Memorial Garden
I listened to so many testimonials, heard so many memories, read so many patches, hats, and flags announcing Calvary’s, Infantry’s, Divisions, Commissions, and surrounded by so many people that have given so much of themselves for US. It was an emotional morning. When the flag ceremony began, while taps played, as the Huey helicopter sprinted across the sky I saw more grown men and woman with tears in their eyes than I have ever seen in one place at one time in my entire life.
There was nothing I could say to any of these brave men and women so all I could muster was a simple thanks. We should never forget our Veterans none should suffer in silence, and shame on all of us for denying any of our heroes basic necessities after returning home.
Not to mention we lost one of the most influential people of my lifetime late Friday night with the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Because of her tireless work for equality for all, there is hope that my daughters and all Americans will not face some of the obstacles she did during her lifetime. Thank you and Godspeed.