December 1, 2023

“That push is the factor that stands proud,” A.J. advised Brian, again on the kitchen desk in Wisconsin.

“Can I clarify, although?” Brian requested, and shortly he was taking part in extra movies of Jan. 6 on his laptop, attempting yet one more time to place his actions in context so A.J. might perceive. He confirmed a video of cops capturing munitions into the surging crowd. He confirmed a video of an older girl in an American flag sweatshirt repeatedly strolling up the steps towards the police barricade at 2:27 p.m. after which getting pepper-sprayed and pushed again down the steps by an officer. “All people’s pissed off at this level,” Brian stated. “It’s a melee from right here on.”

He began taking part in one other video, from 2:34 p.m., which confirmed Brian within the seconds earlier than he pushed Karlsen’s riot defend. In the course of the trial, Karlsen testified that he was within the means of retreating from the gang, and he was backing up towards a stairway with particles underfoot. He glanced down for a break up second to test his stability, and that’s when Brian took benefit and pushed him. However now Brian advised A.J. an altogether totally different story: that he heard Karlsen threaten to shoot him, and that when Karlsen turned his head Brian believed he was in search of his gun. The push was a spontaneous act of self-defense, Brian stated.

“It’s going to be high-pitched, however hear for him saying, ‘Or I’ll shoot,’” Brian stated.

He performed the video and seemed over at A.J., however A.J. shook his head. All he might hear was a muffled echo over the roar of the gang. “Attempt once more,” A.J. stated. He wished to listen to it. He wished to sq. his model of actuality along with his father’s. He leaned towards the laptop computer as Brian performed the video for a second time, then a 3rd.

“Or I’ll shoot?” Brian requested, taking a look at his son, hoping for absolution. “Are you able to hear any of that in there?”

“No. Probably not,” A.J. stated.

“However do you imagine what I’m telling you? Do you perceive?”

A.J. studied his father from throughout the desk, looking for some sort of bridge. He believed his father was honest. He believed Brian liked his nation and his youngsters and wished the most effective for each. However A.J. additionally believed that some occasions couldn’t be rationalized — they have been both actual or imagined, both proper or improper — and any significant reconciliation wanted to begin from a spot of accountability and reality.

“I perceive why you have been discovered responsible of the push,” he stated.

“Yeah, I pushed the defend,” Brian stated, nodding. They sat collectively for a second in settlement, however then Brian reached again for his laptop.

Audio produced by Adrienne Hurst.

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