“Unprecedented” times worsen into the new year

A.J. Sanford ’21

The horrific events that transpired on January 6 in Washington D.C. left our country questioning our very democracy. These actions at the Capitol put the double standard of police protesting on full display: those who are in support of or do not condemn Mr. Trump’s actions or the terroristic events at the Capitol stand for something not of politics, but for white supremacy. 

     As extremists raided the Capitol in hopes of overturning President-Elect Biden’s vote count, a disturbing piece of history emerged and redefined the nation’s view of the Trump supporter. With a shorthanded and passively defensive staff, the extremists overtook the Capitol building in the name of Donald Trump and in the name of America. Lawmakers were sent into a state of emergency as individuals invaded with tear gas, anguish, and hearts drenched in racism. The images are despicable and frankly terrifying. Confederate flags, white supremacy propaganda, and anti-semitic merchandise were all present. These people participated in an unforgivable crime that has not been witnessed in your parents’ or your grandparents’ lifetime, yet these men and women’s white privilege protected them from virtually any harm. 

     Following Black Lives Matter protests in response to recent police brutality and injustice, Mr. Trump tweeted “They are THUGS.” To his followers at the Capitol, Trump tweeted, “Go Home. We Love You, You’re Very Special.” When black people are tired of being treated the same way they have been since the birth of our nation, they are demoralized and vilified for their longing for equality. When a predominantly white mob, cloaked in unwavering hate, commits treason of the highest degree, they are loved and praised for their patriotic spirit by the President of the United States. This type of polarizing language has been potent throughout Trump’s presidency, so this should not come as any surprise. “The economy is booming” or “look at what he’s doing for black people” is the first thing that spews out of a Trump supporter’s mouth when confronted with his overt racism. While Trump may have had his economic success, these arguments are no longer valid as he abused his power and initiated a coup d’etat contaminated with hatred and violence.

The East Side of the U.S. Capitol – Martin Falbisoner via Wikimedia Commons

      The infiltration of the Capitol building only serves as the prelude for much darker times to come. On paper, with the small number of casualties, the damage would not appear to be so catastrophic, but I believe this is the exact reason that we should be so fearful of what is to come. The National Guard was put on standby in Washington D.C. as a shattered Republican party disgraced the insurrectionists. An offer was not extended to the National Guard even though the Capitol knew of the high chance of calamity due to recent pro-Trump rallies. 

The infiltration of the Capitol building only serves as the prelude for much darker times to come.

     When Black Lives Matter protesters had plans of going to the Lincoln Memorial, the National Guard was called in with their riot shields and rifles awaiting the signal to open fire. What this entails is that there is no red flag that any extremist received the day of the insurrection and nothing is prohibiting them from finishing what they started. 

     Per The New York Times, the National Counterterrorism Center and the Justice and Homeland Security Departments issued a statement that read: “Extremists aiming to trigger a race war may exploit the aftermath of the Capitol breach by conducting attacks to destabilize and force a climactic conflict in the United States.” 

     Whether this is Trump’s idea of his hardcore followers “standing down” or not, he let it get to this point and fueled the fire in most recent speeches. 

Donald Trump has nothing left to offer this country other than division.

     Trump refused to leave office without bringing the nation down with him and has now historically been impeached for a second time for his atrocities. If President Trump truly denounced his spawn of violent mobbers, he would have never gone outside of his power to tell his supporters to “fight back” the choice of the people. He would have never faltered in his message condemning the Proud Boys and white supremacy at the presidential debate. He would have never incited his extremist supporters to chant “hang Mike Pence” and “death to Nancy Pelosi” if he truly disapproved of recent events. Donald Trump has nothing left to offer this country other than division, and should he ever be allowed to run for office again, his new slogan should be changed to MAFA: Make America Fear Again.