OPINION: The Unfairness of What Happened at the Capitol Storm

Photo Credit: AP News

Photo Credit: AP News

Elijah Carson, OwlFeed News Editor

During a joint session of Congress to certify the electoral college votes, on Jan. 6th, domestic terrorists stormed the Capitol in an attempt to kidnap certain congressmen and to change the vote in President Trump’s favor. While this event was already angering enough, people are upset that the government and police treated the event differently than what happened in the Black Lives Matter protests from the spring. 

Before we continue with the argument, let’s get some background information on what happened on each side. Let’s start with what happened at the Capitol. It all started around 12 p.m. where President Trump held a rally near the White House, where he was talking about the election and how it was rigged against him. He falsely claimed to have won the election, and that because of the wide-spread fraud, he somehow lost. 

President Trump then incited the audience to go storm the Capitol by saying, “After this, we’re going to walk down, and I’ll be there with you.” Trump’s supporters proceeded to the Capitol, and they broke down multiple police barricades and started a brutal fight. And at 2:10 p.m., they finally broke into the building itself. 

According to CNN, Vice President Mike Pence, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, and the rest of the Congress members were ushered out of harm’s way as the rioters attempted their plan to kidnap or murder them, where some attackers had zip ties and handcuffs awaiting for them. 

As the attack finally cooled down and police barricades became stronger, five people, four rioters and one police officer, had died from the event, where little to no arrests were made during that night. Of course, the number of charges had grown since Jan 6, to over 135 arrests, with 400 people identified as suspects in the attack. 

Still, the attack was a huge disrespect that happened to our nation. A spat to the American people and our founding fathers as people trespassed, destroyed, and dishonored private property, and it was sad to see how our government and our former President, Donald Trump, treated it compared to the BLM protests. 

When analyzing the arrests that happened during the summer, according to the Washington Post in an article about the riots, “14,000. That’s the estimated number of arrests made across 49 U.S. cities during anti-racism protests last summer.” Reports show that between May 30 and June 2, 2020, the height of the racial justice protests, 427 “unrest-related” arrests were made in D.C., including 24 juveniles. 

During the BLM protests, President Trump had the national guard protecting the Capitol and even had one woman arrested who was protesting near it. However, during the attack, he instead chose to tweet insults about Vice President Pence, saying, “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify.” 

Even the way he reacted to the people was vastly different. To the BLM protesters, he called them thugs, saying via Twitter, “These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen…Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!” 

However, when the Capitol siege was at its worst, he didn’t hold any of his supporters accountable and chose to pamper and comfort them, by releasing a video and saying, “It was a landslide election. And everyone knows it. Especially the other side. But you have to go home. … There’s never been a time like this when such a thing happened when they could take it away from all of us. From me, from you, from our country. This was a fraudulent election. … Go home. We love you. You’re very special.” 

Photo Credit: AP News

And that’s the hurtful thing about this. The clear evidence of racial injustice that our government loves to support and have clear favorites when it comes down to the matter. Why is it so easy for some people to become violent and deadly, when someone of a different color gets somewhat aggressive, they are predetermined that they are the ones who should be stopped?  

Why do people of color have to be careful and be afraid whenever they’re in public, why can’t they just relax and join a society like any other person? Why is there hate in the world just because I and many other citizens of the world look different than you? We didn’t do anything wrong, and like everyone else, we just want to be accepted and appreciated. However, the Capitol attack led by domestic terrorists did show how even in today’s day and age, racism and white supremacy are still rampant. 

If you want simpler words to describe this event, then I’ll give you one word: unfair. 

Looking towards the future, let’s try and hope for the better, with President Biden coming into the office and already reversing some of President Trump’s most controversial orders and talking about the racial injustice that has happened in recent years. So maybe one day we can all go out and not have to worry about whether our skin color can cause outrage among others.