This Week’s Attack on the Capital and What it Means for America

Amy Zhang
4 min readJan 11, 2021
On January 6th, 2021, thousands of Trump supporters marched on the Capitol to listen to Donald Trump give a speech at his “Save America” March. What was supposed to be a rally ended in dire consequences.

January 6th was like any other day for me: school was starting up again after Christmas break, assignmnets and assessments were piling up, and sleepless nights appeared once more. I remember I had an economics test, and I later learned during lunch that it was a very important day politically. Now, I wasn’t aware how many things we actually happening that day- I was too caght up in finishing college applications and studying for tests. Many historical events were happening that day: the Georgia Senate runoffs, Congress confirming Joe Biden’s electoral vote, and of course the Trump rally, where Trump still refused to give up the results of the election. Many Senators also refused to recognize the results of the Arizona election, which resulted in many hours of debate. That night, Vice President Pence was also supposed to concede and wish Joe Biden well (“God Bless America”) but Trump told Pence not to concede. Pence, who has been loyal to Trump for four years, refused to do that, putting the country’s democracy before his own beliefs for once- something every politician should be doing. It seems many previous prominent figures in politics- Pence and even McConnell- who have been loyal to Trump in the past are all fed up with his BS and start to break away from him. I mean, it could be because they’re all losing their jobs because of Trump’s election loss.

Fast forward into the day, and we were striking up a discussion about everything I just talked about in AP Literature, when we got news that Trump protestors made it all of the way to the stairs leading up to the Congress building. By that time, none of us in that class would know what would unfold in the next two hours. By the time my last class, Calculus, ended, pictures of Trump supporters inside of the Congress, ransacking and damaging property, stealing podiums and putting their feet up on Speaker Pelosi’s desk was incredibly horrifying and disrespectful. Five people died that day, four officers and one protestor. It was a very sad, upsetting day for many Americans across the world. In fact, my violin teacher had to cancel our lesson that night because of how upset it made her. That night, I thought back to school that day, and I remembered we were debating the pronounciation of “coup”. How ironic was it that just a few minutes later an actual coup was happening? It is unbelievable that American citizens stormed their government and planned to harm Mike Pence and Nancy Pelosi. What kind of delusion is this?

What caused all of this? It was the result of “the big fat lie” repeated over and over again in a truly fascistic manner, perpetrated by President Trump, Republican U.S. Senators and members of the U.S. House of Representatives, that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were illegally and corruptly elected and that the election was stolen! Even now a majority of House Republicans will not say that Biden and Harris were elected in a free, fair, open and legal election. The refusal of Donald Trump to concede to this election is only spurring and egging his supporters on, and charges against Trump are now “inciting violence”. What has happened to our democracy? What have we come to? We are now country so divided that even our President and members of Congress do not abide by our Constitution and respect the outcome of a completely just and fair election.

In the days that passed, I watched videos that uncovered the damage inside the Congress building. Mirrors and windows smashed, doors with huge dents with them, and the ransacking and robbing was indescribable. I saw Speaker Pelosi’s office damaged and video footage taken while the coup was taking place. When I thought about it, the whole event was incredibly hypocritical. During the BlackLivesMatter protests, Trump supporters looked down at protestors ransacking and looting places and not “backing the blue”. They did the same exact thing at the Capitol on January 6th- harming and even killing the men and women in blue they so valiantly defended back in June. If the event was anyone but white people, police would’ve been a lot more violent and would’ve most likely done a lot more to keep the protestors out. The idea of police brutality has been a recurring theme throughout this year, and people can’t help but think how different things would be if the Capitol protestors were BLM protestors.

Although Donald Trump tweeted for his supporters to stop and that violence is not the answer, he clearly didn’t do much to stop them. This led to Twitter permenently suspending his account. Many other organizations have taken action to ban Donald Trump from their platforms, and we see even more GOP figures moving away from Trump.

January 6th will be a day that goes down in history. Like the election, this day showed us that America’s democracy is very fragile, and we are divided more than ever. I hope that nothing like this ever happens again, and that under the Biden administration, we can repair our country to what is was like before 2016, and hope that our democracy will stand.



Amy Zhang

Injustice from the eyes of a high schooler. Activist. Lover of history. Here to educate and inspire.