Jan.6 marked exactly one year since the attack on the U.S. Capitol that took the lives of several people. The aftermath it had on the congress members and government workers that were there on that day is apparent, but it also had a widespread effect on the public. The one-year anniversary reminded Americans of the event, and many ceremonies were held throughout the country.
Government leaders in Washington D.C. dedicated the whole day to activities commemorating the day. Several members of congress delivered speeches. A prayer vigil and a moment of silence for the victims were also held. President Biden alsodelivered remarks on the insurrection. Biden’s speech went into what he will do to prevent an occurrence like this from happening again and facing the truth of the event. He attributed the start of the riot to former-President Donald Trump’s actions beforehand.
“What did we not see? We didn’t see a former president who had just rallied the mob to attack, sitting in the private dining room off the Oval Office in the White House, watching it all on television,” President Biden said.
On a local scale, teenagers also remember the day vividly, including many students at Burke. The news coverage of it froze many Americans in their spots. For students, the insurrection interrupted the school day and distracted from their learning. Junior Emma Houndjo recalls watching it.
“I remember seeing the headlines on all types of media that I opened that day. I saw it on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, TV,everything. I remember seeing and hearing people threatenofficials to their face, arm themselves with weapons, and fightagainst the police that they heavily outnumbered,” Houndjo said.
Aside from witnessing it on the news, the event split America down the middle. Some praised the rioters, while others saw it as a terrible tragedy. Sophomore Amaya Bartee is with the latterside.
“I thought the riot was an absolutely ridiculous stunt. It was unnecessary in every single way; the damage caused, the lives lost and the politics it created were unnecessary. Nothing positive came out of the riot,” Bartee stated.
On the flip side, many people disagree with Bartee. Among them is junior Noah Shrago, who believes the media covered the insurrection inappropriately.
“I think the riot was tragic and shouldn’t have happened. However, I think the media coverage of it was completely unfair, especially compared to other events,” Shrago said.
Ultimately, several lives were lost in relation to the insurrectionand over 136 police officers were injured. Ashli Babbitt, Kevin Greeson, Rosanne Boyland, and Benjamin Philips died in the crowd. In the following weeks, five police officers died. Officer Brian Sicknick died on Jan. 7 after being attacked by protestors, and four others committed suicide after the incident.
A year later, many people involved in the riot are facing criminal charges. Christopher Wray, FBI director, called the attack “domestic terrorism.” The investigation into the riot was extremely large and required the work of several government offices. So far, approximately 70 people have been sentenced for charges related to the event. However, since over 2,000 people were at the Capitol that day, there are still many people who could potentially face charges.
“The lack of policing and charges placed on the people that committed the crime of storming the biggest government building in history was ridiculous. I think it was biased because of the race and political standpoint of the perpetrators. If it would have been Black Lives Matter protesters and not rioters supporting the Republican party the response would’ve been different,” Bartee said.