After former President Donald Trump's lies about the 2020 election led to a deadly failed siege of the United States Capitol, Republican supporters of Donald Trump leapt to dismiss the insurrection's severity and the dangers caused by Trump's disinformation.
Multiple people were killed and injured during the riots and their aftermath, with rioters shattering windows smearing excrement across the walls, ransacking offices, and coming within feet of lawmakers whose execution they'd been calling for just moments before.
Hundreds of Capitol rioters have since been charged, but like the disinformation that sparked the insurrection in the first place, the conspiracy theories and outright lies regarding the election are taking root within the GOP.
One absurd theory is that the violence at the riots were primarily caused by Trump critics or by antifa, who masqueraded as Trump supporters to hurt Trump in the court of public opinion (throughout his term, Trump had a historically low approval rating). This theory was even promoted by Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) in an official hearing.
Now, another far-right provocateur, Dinesh D'Souza, is claiming the riots weren't riots at all.
He cited a single photograph as evidence.
Does this LOOK like an insurrection? A riot? A coup attempt? If it doesn’t walk like a duck or talk like a duck the… https://t.co/Qyp6rysbKH— Dinesh D'Souza (@Dinesh D'Souza) 1620046937.0
D'Souza, whom Trump pardoned for campaign finance violations in 2018, showed a viral photo from the insurrection featuring rioter Adam Johnson gleefully walking away with the podium of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). Johnson was arrested two days later on counts of theft and unlawful entry.
Though D'Souza absurdly used Johnson's photo to dismiss the severity of the riots, Twitter users inundated him with photos that helped convey the horrors of January 6.
Yes Dinesh, this does look like a riot. https://t.co/tYZHI6TtYX https://t.co/cFuk8uWjnG— Right Wing Cope (@Right Wing Cope) 1620069260.0
Looks like treason tbh https://t.co/KmWyC2gcvX https://t.co/1BBbBSyoBs— Crash Course: AP Adulting (@Crash Course: AP Adulting) 1620070428.0
No wonder he fails history, he can’t even remember recent events. https://t.co/eFo3y8QtJT https://t.co/J7ev4uiV9d— Morten Øverbye (@Morten Øverbye) 1620077537.0
The first image is from the Tampa Bay Time; the second from the New York Time; the third from the Jewish Journal, n… https://t.co/FOYdnjfHo3— Save the GOP (@Save the GOP) 1620059377.0
Wonder why he chose this picture instead of this one. https://t.co/civel7Ux43 https://t.co/jLHcu6LI5m— Dennis DiClaudio (@Dennis DiClaudio) 1620075124.0
Yes it does https://t.co/ntk1cJf6s8 https://t.co/is6Tk3ccgi— Zealous (@Zealous) 1620075124.0
They didn't hesitate to remind D'Souza of his own crimes.
Does this LOOK like someone who's opinion matters? No, it doesn't. https://t.co/RqJVExC1FE https://t.co/h8gQnt4f6Q— JK Callaway (@JK Callaway) 1620077797.0
With judgment like this, it’s no wonder Dinesh D’Souza ended up a convicted felon. https://t.co/ldteGA57Jf— Renato Mariotti (@Renato Mariotti) 1620070975.0
said the duck https://t.co/eMAGlTvciA https://t.co/wPQh08WDD7— D.R. Pena II (@D.R. Pena II) 1620073718.0