Why “Felony Murder” charges and Congressional Disqualifications are essential for kids

Ira David Socol
14 min readJan 17, 2021


police officers outside the Capitol on January 6, one holds his head in his hands
police officers outside the Capitol on January 6

“Officer Brian D. Sicknick died Thursday due to injuries sustained while on-duty, physically engaging with protesters at the US Capitol, a statement said.

“Sicknick, a 12-year veteran of the force, was “responding to the riots on Wednesday, January 6, 2021, at the US Capitol and was injured while physically engaging with protesters”, Capitol Police said in a statement.” — France24

I am not a big fan of punishment. Punishments rarely prevent ‘recidivism,’ and the threat of punishment rarely discourages the illegal, the immoral, or the inappropriate. Punishment also, far too often, looks like revenge or vengeance, and revenge and vengeance are morally untenable and do as much damage to those avengers as they do to the perpetrators (the harm is just less immediately obvious).

So, why am I asking for the most extreme criminal charges against those who assaulted the US Capitol and US democracy on January 6, 2021? And why am I asking for the most extreme political charges against Congressional Republicans who helped foment that insurrection?

Because social responsibility matters, and people must be forced to respond regarding actions that harm our society, our culture, and our communities.

Felony Murder. Felony Murder charges against a thousand people? Why?

The invasion of the US Capitol was, in itself, a violent felony, a premeditated, well-planned violent felony. Unlike the outbreaks of looting that occasionally broke out in the wake of Black Lives Matter protests in 2020, no reasonable person in the mob marching on the Capitol could have missed the intent. They were marching along with armed co-conspirators, with criminals carrying ladders and scaling gear and restraints and clubs. They were openly calling for the lynching of the Vice President.

First-degree murder is called a felony murder when a human being is killed during the commission of a felony… Another common situation is an armed robbery where only one of the participants shoots the victim. In these cases, all of the participants in the robbery can be charged with felony murder, even though they didn’t kill the victim nor…

Ira David Socol

Author, Dreamer, Educator: A life in service - NYPD, EMS, disabilities/UDL specialist, tech and innovation leader for education. Co-author of Timeless Learning