U.S. Capitol breach invokes political chaos

Zane Turner and Ellen McDonald

Over the past four years, political unrest in the United States has been becoming more and more apparent.

All of this came to a climax on Nov. 3, 2020, when a historic number of voters turned out for the 2020 election. 

On Nov. 7, 2020 Joseph R.Biden was projected to be the winner of the 2020 election, making him the president-elect. After a series of lawsuits and vote searching done by President Trump, the Electoral College met in a joint session of Congress to confirm Biden as the 46th President of the United States. 

On Jan. 6, a mob sporting “Trump 2020” and “Make America Great Again” signs and flags were seen protesting in front of the U.S. Capitol Building. These protesters were armed and their goal was to interrupt the confirmation of President Elect Biden. 

It was not long before the protest began to turn violent as many of the protestors started to assault security officers and the policemen who were attempting to hold them back. 

However, because they were outnumbered, their line of security was breached. Protestors were seen climbing the walls of the Capitol building, causing important political figures such as, Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Michael Pence to evacuate to a safer location. 

Quickly, the Capitol floor was overtaken with erratic rioters who were shouting, destroying property and throwing and destroying important documents.  

These rioters eventually made their way to the senate floor of the Capitol, where they were caught on camera in politician’s desks and stealing objects such as the podiums of the Speaker of the House.

The protestors were also attempting to breach the senate floor, which still housed some politicians. The Secret Service were seen with guns drawn at protestors trying to get in as the door was barricaded with bookshelves.  

Finally, the politicians were evacuated and the protestors took the senate floor. As the protesters staged a coup (a sudden, violent, and illegal seizure of power from a government) of the floor, police stormed in later that night, equipped with flash bangs and rubber bullets. They dispatched the protestors with efficiency.  

Since these events, five people have been confirmed dead: Benjamin Philips, Kevin Greeson, Rosanne Boyland, Ashli Babbit and Officer Bryan D. SickNick. 

The event led to the arrest of 82 protestors. 

The events that unfolded before the eyes of the American people have since been called an act of “domestic terrorism.”

Terrorism or not, one thing is for sure, our nation’s Capitol was under siege and it was due to the deception and fear mongering of President Trump. 

Trump has been leading his supporters to believe that the 2020 election was stolen. He has convinced them that there was voter fraud. This comes after he questions his lack of mail-in-votes after spending months urging his supporters to vote in person.

“They rigged it like they’ve never rigged an election before,” said Trump in his speech following the attempted coup. 

When one only listens to one source (being Trump in this case), one believes themselves to be correct and no amount of rationale or reasoning can convince one otherwise. 

The men and women who stormed the Capitol were acting in what they believed to be their patriotic duty. 

It was not. 

As President Elect Biden said in his speech following the event, “Yesterday, in my view, was one of the darkest days in the history of our nation.”

In response to the attempted coup, Vice President Michael Pence spoke out against these egregious actions.

“We condemn the violence that took place here in the strongest possible terms,” said Pence during his congressional testimony following the attack. “We grieve the loss of life in these hallowed halls, as well as the injuries suffered by those who defended our Capitol today.”

Unlike the President, Pence condemned the very people who supported him. This was not about political offlations, it was about the wellbeing of our nation. He was able to look past all else and speak out against the rioters.

Pence added, “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.”

Pence did not glorify or thank those who stormed the Capitol, unlike Trump. They did not deserve recognition or praise. He acknowledged the events and crimes committed and urged the country to move forward. 

“And as we reconvene in this chamber, the world will again witness the resilience and strength of our democracy, for even in the wake of unprecedented violence and vandalism at this Capitol, the elected representatives of the people of the United States have assembled again on the very same day to support and defend the constitution of the United States,” said Pence. 

To many, these attacks did not come as a surprise. For the past four years, Trump has provided an environment for bigotry, racism and conspiracy theories. He has set America up for this and it could have been far more catastrophic. 

“The past four years, we’ve had a president who’s made his contempt for our democracy, our Constitution, the rule of law clear in everything he has done,” said Biden. “He unleashed an all-out assault on our institutions of our democracy from the outset. And yesterday was the culmination of that unrelenting attack.”

It all led to this. Even within his last weeks as president, Trump still managed to entice violence and hatred onto the elected officials that the American people elected and not by the electoral college, like himself. 

Trump has created an environment to where the media, the very entity that society relies on most, is the enemy. 

“He’s attacked the free press who dared to question his power, repeatedly calling the free press ‘the enemy of the people,’” said Biden. “Language at the time he first used it, I and others said, has long been used by autocrats and dictators all over the world to hold on to power — the enemy of the people. Language that is being used now by autocrats and dictators across the world, only this time with the imprimatur of an outgoing president of the United States of America.”

America will not burn with Trump. This was ensured when Georgia elected Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, making the democrats take majority within the senate. 

Even after haunting photos of a smog covered Capitol, Trump still refused to denounce the rioters. 

“By the way, last night, they [his supporters] didn’t do a bad job either, if you notice,” said Trump. “I’m honest. I just, again, I want to thank you.”

After videos and photos of his supporters destroying our Capitol by climbing walls and throwing classified documents, he thanked them.

Trump went on and said, “All of us here today do not want to see our election victory stolen by emboldened radical left Democrats, which is what they’re doing and stolen by the fake news media. That’s what they’ve done and what they’re doing. We will never give up. We will never concede, it doesn’t happen. You don’t concede when there’s theft involved.”

America will watch in relief when President Elect Biden is inaugurated on Jan. 20.