Two-week turnaround: from insurrection to inauguration


11th Hour//Twitter

These photos, captured on the inauguration of Donald Trump and weeks before that of Joe Biden, are indicative of the nature of the criminals involved. Rather than the Capitol being a symbol of the unity and strength of the government, it has become warped into a minefield of personal agendas, hurtful rhetoric and cruelty that knows no bounds.

It is believed that there are generational, once-in-a-lifetime events that every member of the generation remembers; Pearl Harbor, MLK’s assassination, 9/11 and now the insurrection at the Capitol. On Jan. 6, 2021, another generation watched, stunned, as a government building was ransacked. Another generation witnessed an act of terrorism.

White Station’s classes handled the events of the day in different manners, some pausing entirely to dedicate time to the history occurring in real time.

“In my experience, the event was discussed extensively in class, which I greatly appreciate,” Maddie Hitching (12) said. “Despite being on a lower scale than the 9/11 attacks, the riots should be given plenty of in-class discussion, especially since the terrorists were domestic, possibly putting the situation in a much more dangerous light.”

Other teachers operated their classrooms as usual, utilizing the class period for education of a different nature.

“I don’t know the full story on this,” Melodee McCoy (10) said. “Absolutely [this should have been talked about more]. People need to know that our own people can be just as bad as those from other countries.”

This lack of information has spread beyond the classroom and into news and media networks, leaving a number of people ignorant about the recent insurrection.

“The seriousness of the situation was portrayed unevenly by many media sources, which definitely altered the perception of those relying on different sources,” Hitching said.

The United States is commonly viewed as one of the greatest countries in the world, attributed much to a strong military and tenacious leadership, but when faced with an internal threat these qualities were proven to be severely lacking.

“The fact that a group of terrorists successfully breached the Capitol on the basis of what they called a rigged election is absurd and terrifying,” Hitching said. “It is incredible that so many people shared the belief that the recounted and obvious results were false, and even more incredible that these beliefs led them to violently attack the U.S. Capitol. The riots definitely showed that the country is unprepared for large scale attacks of this nature, domestic or otherwise, given that the building was so easily breached.”

When leveled with a divisive crisis, defense systems and the bureaucracy crumbled. There were individuals risking their lives while other  individuals were fraternizing with the — then — enemy.

“I knew we were divided but I never thought that it would get this bad,” McCoy said.

Government officials, including former president Donald Trump, reacted in a wild manner of ways following the Capitol attacks.

“Following the riot, Trump was slow to give any response at all, and even then, his response was one of support for the rioters,” Hitching said. “His actions were weak and showed that he has no remorse for making false accusations about the election or encouraging his supporters to attack the Capitol.”

When compared to President Trump’s governing decisions following the Black Lives Matter protests of 2020, it is not difficult to consider that racial inequality played a role in the breach of the Capitol, among other things.

“I know that if these people were of different race or religion, the media would’ve put them in a tougher spot,” McCoy said.

Following the attempted coup,  Trump and several of his accomplices faced consequences, leaving a smear on the end of his presidency.

“Congress was quick to draw up impeachment articles against Trump, which was necessary in light of his lead role in the insurrection,” Hitching said.

These events had an effect even going into the officiation of new leadership on Inauguration Day.

“I believe it made us think they would strike again on Inauguration Day,” Stella Cooley (9) said.

While this was a major incident in the United States, it also had a profound effect on the rest of the world, watching the country go up in flames and tarnishing its own reputation.

“[ Trump made me] embarrassed because that was the President of our country,” Cooley said.