by Pritha Nag
Today, January 7th 2021, thousands of Trump supporters stormed their way into the Capitol, as the Congress planned to confirm Joe Biden as the President-elect of the United States. It has been confirmed that one woman has been shot dead and that the security in the Capitol was not nearly good enough, to prevent the many pro-Trump supporters stormed their way in. Storming in with armed weapons, tear gas and wreaking much havoc, looted famous paintings, punctured tires, vandalism and attempted bombing.
President Donald Trump has been igniting this flame with retweeting and tweeting out many tweets claiming that the election has been rigged. What lit the candle was Trump retweeting a video about a march on January 6th in Washington DC on January 4th, encouraging his supporters to go and march for him, saying“I will be there. Historic day!”
What happened next no one suspected.
Trump supporters then stormed the US capitol as the Congress were inside, as Vice President Mike Pence and lawmakers ran. The large mob consisting of thousands was not suspected, as the police had set low barriers and officers were mostly in police street uniforms rather than riot gear. It was said that the police were extremely lax, an image was even posted on social media of a police officer taking a selfie with an intruder. One video also showed police opening the gate a little so that Trump supporters could come through. One of the protesters spray painted on the windshield of a car “PELOSI IS SATAN,” talking about the speaker of the United States House of Representatives.
One woman was shot after not complying with the police, but no more information has been disclosed. The FBI had found two suspected explosive devices, and the Capitol only announced safety four hours after the attack.
Donald Trump tweeted out pleading his supporters to “Support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement.” And “I am asking for everyone at the U.S. Capitol to remain peaceful. No violence!”
Trump’s Twitter has been locked for 12 hours after he has continued to push baseless claims, and encourage the riots that broke out in the Capitol. Twitter warned him if he didn’t want a permanent ban, he would have to stop tweeting out baseless and unreliable content. “As a result of the unprecedented and ongoing violent situation in Washington, DC, we have required the removal of three @realDonaldTrump Tweets that were posted earlier today for repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy. If the Tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked.” Twitter stated. Facebook and Instagram have also locked Trumps pages for 24 hours, according to the BBC.
As of today (7/1/21), 52 people have been arrested. Of the 52, 47 were arrested on grounds of or not complying with curfew guidelines. The Mayor of Washington DC, Muriel Browser had announced a citywide curfew from Wednesday 6pm till Thursday 6am. Trump supporters stormed the Capitol around 11am, late Wednesday, breaking curfew guidelines.
Despite this disruption Congress has announced Joe Biden as the next President-elect of the United States.
Even members of the GOP (Grand Old Party) have questioned Donald Trump, including the Vice President Mike Pence who in a letter to congress stated– “It is my considered judgment that my oath to support and defend the Constitution constrains me from claiming unilateral authority to determine which electoral votes should be counted and which should not.” Trump has released a statement 20 minutes after Pence’s, via Dan Scavino Twitter (as his Twitter has banned Trump’s twitter) stating– “Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of this election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th.” This was around early morning -3:40 AM, 7/1/21.
What happened today was a historical event. Vandalism, breaking and entering, breaking curfew guidelines, vandalism have not been seen in recent American history and we can hope no one witnesses again. What is typically a respectable and peaceful ceremony has turned into much more than a simple protest as these so-called protesters storm the Capitol.
Can the United States democracy get through this?