Gina Montagna

Trump encourages his supporters to storm the Capitol leaving government officials shaken after their lives were put in danger by their own president

The events of Jan. 6, 2021 will go down as a day when American terrorists stormed and ravaged their own Capitol building in an attempt to protest the results of a fair election, while promoting racist and white supremacist ideals. Wearing Neo-Nazi shirts and flying confederate flags, President Trump’s supporters broke their way through barricades and windows and vandalized a place so full of history and justice. The only other time the Capitol building has been attacked was during the War of 1812, when British troops burned the Capitol in 1814 as an act of vengeance. Who would expect America’s own citizens to rise up and ravage their own government building, putting their own representatives in harm’s way?

The blame for this attack fully goes to Donald J. Trump. He excited his own mob of supporters that morning and said, “We’re going to walk down, and I’ll be there with you. … We are going to the Capitol,” in an attempt to propel his supporters into violent action and stop the certification of the election results. Unfortunately for his supporters, Trump did not walk alongside them to the Capitol. Trump and his family sat idly by, and watched the assault erupt through a television screen.

These Trump rioters told the press that they were there in the name of patriotism to contest the election and fight for their freedom. However, recounts took place in various states, lawsuits were overturned and even the Republican leaning Supreme Court dismissed Trump’s case of election fraud. Trump supporters were not being stripped of their freedoms and neither was Trump. Yet, Trump continued to spin his web of lies and manipulate the minds of his supporters in order to still have political influence during the last days of his presidency. 

After the crowds were under control, senators and congressmen returned to their chambers to certify the election results, placing Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the official President-elect and Vice President-elect. Trump’s own Vice President Mike Pence addressed the Senate condemning the acts of violence and said that “To those who wreaked havoc in our Capitol today, you did not win. Violence never wins. Freedom wins, and this is still the people’s house” and shared his disapproval for what Trump and his supporters did. However, Pence was not the only Republican who went against Trump’s wishes in continuing the certification process. Majority leader Mitch McConnell addressed the Congress and said that for the good of the nation and the people, he could not override or vote against confirming the election. In his strong speech he declared that if “This election were overturned by mere allegations from the losing side, our democracy would enter a death spiral. We’d never see the whole nation accept an election again. Every four years would be a scramble for power at any cost.” McConnell also denounced the double standard that Republicans have created toward Democrats when it comes to questioning election processes and results. Even Georgia Senator Kelly Loeffler, who had originally sided with Trump, refused to dispute the election results even after losing her own run-off election to Democrat Raphael Warnock. 

After the breach of the Capitol, some Republicans are reconsidering their alliance with the Trump administration. Trump put their lives in danger by inciting this mob of violent rioters. It is about time that Republicans realize that Trump does not represent Republican values and is only in support of a racist regime that places him as the idol. The Republican Party is going to have to work hard to disassociate their image from Trump and his supporters after they showed America their true colors on Jan. 6. 

It is embarrassing for Trump supporters to be acting in such an anarchist manner after criticizing the Black Lives Matter protests of the same thing. Trump supporters, particularly those who have long stood with the Republican Party, need to wake up and realize they have been manipulated. They have succumbed to Trump’s belligerent sea of lies and the creation of his own radical and violent fandom that they have become a part of. 

The flying of Confederate flags and destruction of the Capitol are not what any American should stand for. We cannot let ourselves fall victim to the constant battle for power between political parties. As Americans, we must continue to take steps forward to better our country and condemn racism and chaos such as those events. I have hope that this event serves as a reminder for all Americans and government officials that we must not stray into violence and disorder. Elected officials need to reach across the aisle and work together now more than ever to stabilize our nation and reinstate the political respect between parties. vvvv

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