What It’s Like to be Under Siege

Well, ok, the headline is a bit exaggerated but I wanted to get your attention. On second thought maybe not so exaggerated.

I live 4 miles from the Washington, DC/Maryland line, and about 9 miles from the White House. My little neighborhood street intersects Connecticut Avenue, the street that takes you directly to the White House except for the last 3 blocks.

Here is what’s happening during inauguration week.:

–All bridges (4) that are over the Potomac River, which separates Virginia and Washington, DC, will be shut down to pedestrian and vehicle traffic from Tuesday AM through Thursday morning. One bridge already closed down on Friday evening. As far as I know this has never happened in our history. Remember that DC, the Maryland suburbs near DC, and the Virginia suburbs near DC, all operate in practice as one jurisdiction.

–The National Mall will be closed down on inauguration day, which as far as I know has never happened in US history. It will be shut down for close to a week

.–Many Post Office Boxes have either been removed or locked shut in DC.–National Guard Troops will go from 10,000 (currently) to 20,000.

–Thirteen Metro stations will be closed in DC around inauguration.–Many hotels will be closed during this time out of concern for staff and fear of unwanted guests.

–Airburb has cancelled ALL reservations during inaugeration week and refunded hosts and those who had reservations.

–Most airlines will not carry firearms in the baggage compartments, and the number of flights during this time to DC airports have been cut back. The four airports in the DC area, Dullus (in VA), National Airport, (VA) Richmond Airport (100 miles away in VA) and Baltimore/Washington Airport (MD) are under heightened security.

–Because DC is becoming so fortified, there is concern in both Maryland and Virginia that civil unrest will spill over into those respective states. In fact, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) declared a disaster Friday ahead of the inauguration and asked for federal aid.

But remember, that sunrises, cats, books, and art live on forever during tough times or normal times.

Just after Gutenberg’s press was invented, Venice (which was more of state with a fair degree of independence), Italy became the publishing capitol of the then world in the 1500’s. The Catholic Church struggled to censure many of the books (the first porn book was published there as well as Islamic and Jewish religious books), but Venice prevailed against them, for quite a while, until they didn’t. Then the book burnings started and sometimes the publisher was thrown in the bonfire for good measure. But that time passed…and this time too will pass (but have to say, I’m just not sure when!)

Stay safe everyone!

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