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A rally in support of Donald Trump is held January 16 at the intersection of Johnston Street and Ambassador Caffery Parkway in Lafayette.

On Jan. 6, a huge crowd of Trump supporters descended on Washington D.C. to protest the presidential election results. It was the biggest of the three rallies held in the nation’s capital since the 2020 presidential election. The speakers included President Donald Trump, Donald Trump Jr., and Rudy Giuliani.

During the rally, the president encouraged participants to march “over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.” He never called for security to be breached or for the police to be attacked. He never encouraged vandalism, theft, or violence.

After the speech, some of the attendees did go to the U.S. Capitol. While many stayed outside, others breached security and entered the building. Even worse, some committed crimes such as attacking police officers, destroying property and theft. Tragically, several people died in the melee. Afterward, the FBI arrested dozens of people who engaged in unlawful behavior in the U.S. Capitol on that day.

The Capitol must have security and all individuals who unlawfully entered the building or committed more serious crimes must suffer the appropriate consequences. Fortunately, the overwhelming majority of those who attended the rally did not enter the Capitol. These people committed no crimes and should face no punishment for exercising their First Amendment rights of free speech and assembly.

Sadly, some rally participants have been mistreated by adherents of the “cancel culture” that is tragically pervasive in our country. For instance, rocker Ariel Pink was dropped from his record label, while University of Alabama student C.J. Pearson faced a petition from leftists on his campus who demanded that he be expelled.

The person who has been targeted the most has been Trump, who was quickly impeached could face a trial in the U.S. Senate. The second impeachment of Trump was even more partisan, unwarranted, and vindictive than the first one. The unrelenting persecution of Trump is a convenient way for the GOP establishment, the Democrats, the media, and the Deep State to inflict even more political damage on a political leader they despise.

If it occurs, a second impeachment trial would be conducted while Trump is a private citizen. This is blatantly unconstitutional according to a wide array of legal scholars, such as renowned liberal law professors Jonathan Turley and Alan Dershowitz.

Along with the impeachment, the president has been censored from all his social media platforms and the mainstream news media has limited the coverage of his live speeches. The PGA decided not to hold their championship tournament at his New Jersey golf club and his company was booted from multiple contracts in New York City.

To add insult to injury, the president’s bank dropped him, and other financial institutions will shy away from dealing with any entities associated with him in the future. No doubt, he will also soon face prosecution from liberal prosecutors looking to inflict damage.

The anger extends to Hollywood as some progressive industry executives and actors are demanding that Trump’s cameo appearance in Home Alone 2 be removed. Not to be outdone, liberals in academia have also acted. Trump’s honorary degrees at Lehigh University and Wagner College were recently revoked.

Not only is Trump facing the wrath of the left, but also those who worked in his administration. At Harvard University, students have started a petition demanding that former Trump press secretary Kayleigh McEnany be stripped of her degree from that institution. The Lincoln Project, a group of “Never Trump” Republicans, wants to create a database of all people who worked in the administration and make sure none of them can find employment.

President Joe Biden claims he wants unity, but many Democrats are demanding political retribution against a wide array of conservatives. How can there be unity when there are a multitude of campaigns being conducted to punish conservatives? For instance, publisher Simon and Schuster decided not to print a new book by U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., because he challenged the certification of the electoral votes.

It should be noted that congressional Democrats challenged the certification of electoral votes in 2001, 2005 and 2017. None of the Democrats who contested those results faced any negative consequences. What is transpiring today is both disturbing and unparalleled in recent American history.

Trump’s enemies have been planning to retaliate against him and his supporters since he launched his 2016 campaign. His “America First” agenda was anathema to the political establishment. Trump challenged powerful forces in our government. Now that he has left office, they will exact their revenge, and, in the process, destroy any hopes for unity.

Jeff Crouere is a political commentator on radio and television in New Orleans.