The camouflage fatigues are considerably incongruous on the luxurious lawns of the Texas State Capitol.
Absolutely-armoured and heavily-armed, members of legislation enforcement lounge on park benches and stroll within the heat winter sunshine among the many memorials to the army heroes previous.
There have been no offended protesters for them to confront. Not but anyway.
However the elevated safety presence on the Capitol in Austin displays a nervous nationwide temper with protests threatened right here and at comparable legislative buildings throughout the nation main as much as the inauguration.
A small gathering of armed protesters had turned up on the Texas Capitol on Tuesday and peacefully made their level. Safety was ramped up the next day.
However the army imagery at a constructing that needs to be an emblem of civilian democracy is an alarming assertion of the febrile ambiance in America.
Towards that backdrop, one of many prime Republicans within the state is just not in a temper to decrease the stress. “Doubtless we at the moment are in what I name an ideological civil warfare,” mentioned Allen West.
As a Lieutenant Colonel within the US Military, West noticed service in Iraq earlier than turning into a congressman and firebrand pundit on the Fox Information Channel. He’s now chairman of the Texas Republican Celebration.
Impeachment, not the protests, represents the largest menace to America, he says.
“It’s a very divisive factor to do and I believe it’s a very vindictive factor to do. It isn’t going to assist heal this nation. What it appears like is taking a punitive motion in opposition to an individual since you hate them.”
It’s a view shared by the Trump supporters taking a tour of the historic web site of the siege of The Alamo, seventy miles away from Austin in San Antonio. The 13-day battle between Texan independence fighters and Mexican forces in 1836 has change into a byword for defiance.
Trump followers say impeachment will merely reinvigorate the trustworthy.
“I am hoping that it would not get violent,” mentioned dad Schyler Edwards, “however the way in which they maintain pushing issues that do not make sense, it looks as if they’re doing it simply to p**s off People, simply to dig the knife deeper and twist it.”
Again on the state Capitol in Austin, the lone protester on the gates was no fan of the outgoing president.
He paced up and down with an effigy of a child-like Trump on his shoulder. On the dummy’s orange t-shirt only one phrase: “Jail”