Kaitlin Byrd: Renaissance Maiden (@GothamGirlBlue): So, honestly: this moment should change the national discussion for the next two weeks. And I don’t mean we need up-to-the-minute updates of Paul Pelosi’s condition. I mean we need to talk about what we want our politics to be. Because this isn’t it. It can’t be.

Kaitlin Byrd: Renaissance Maiden (@GothamGirlBlue): We need journalists to dig deep into previous attempts and occurrences of political violence. We need them to ask — for everyone to ask — what every single candidate will do to turn down the rhetoric. We need to pull apart the narratives that led this man to act.

Kaitlin Byrd: Renaissance Maiden (@GothamGirlBlue): You can’t repeatedly tell people that they’re facing an existential threat that can’t be fixed by voting because the system is “rigged” and expect them to react calmly.

Kaitlin Byrd: Renaissance Maiden (@GothamGirlBlue): You can’t tell people that an armed mob hunting members of Congress, the VP, and beating defenders into critical condition is “legitimate political discourse” and then be surprised when people are being lethally attacked.

Kaitlin Byrd: Renaissance Maiden (@GothamGirlBlue): You can’t regularly discuss the “right” to shoot fellow citizens over property, or disagreements, or just a bad day, and then act shocked when they’re ready to kill over politics.

Kaitlin Byrd: Renaissance Maiden (@GothamGirlBlue): Many of us who speak up against fascism have had to close up huge portions of our lives in order to be safe. And we’re just regular people.

Kaitlin Byrd: Renaissance Maiden (@GothamGirlBlue): Last midterm, in 2018, a man sent pipe bombs in the mail to over a dozen Trump critics, political opponents, and major Democratic officials in an attempt to kill them. We let Trump get away with saying the right things without asking about his actions.

Kaitlin Byrd: Renaissance Maiden (@GothamGirlBlue): We should have done it then. We should have done it the whole time this noxious man was in our public sphere. But we can do it now: don’t let the right words obscure the wrong actions. We need answers for how Republicans in particular are going to actively make politics safe.