Presbyterian Church USA

Rev. Jimmie Hawkins on the Attack on the Capitol
Action Alert
Wednesday, January 6, marked the day of EpiphanyDía de Los Reyes, as the end of the Christmas season. Sadly, on that same day, at 2:15 pm EST, the United States Capitol building was stormed by a mob of insurrectionists intent on disrupting the certification of Joe Biden as president of the United States.  This was an alarming and sobering reality of the divisions within our country and the danger posed by those who are guided by extremist ideology.

The chaos of the Trump administration, a term filled with lies and hateful fearmongering, came to a violent climax. Domestic terrorists attempted to intimidate our nation’s leaders in an attempt to halt the certification. Using guns, clubs, and other weapons, terrorists overran the police and broke into the Capitol Building. They broke windows, spray-painted walls, ransacked offices, and left threatening notes. Two pipe bombs were left outside of the DNC and RNC local offices. A cooler of Molotov cocktails was discovered in a parked car. Members of both houses were ushered into safe locations for their well-being knowing that their lives were at risk. Many are still shaken by what happened.

The Office of Public Witness mourns the loss of life that occurred and we pray for the four families now in mourning.

The Office of Public Witness strongly condemns the actions of President Donald J. Trump and his followers. These actions were not just an attack on the Capitol Building, but an attack on American democracy. There must be a demand for accountability on the part of the president, or else the rule of law means nothing. It cannot be applied to some, but not to all. This demand is being proclaimed around the country. Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger has called for invoking the 25th Amendment to remove the president from office. Seven members of the administration have resigned. D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser has called for full prosecution of all responsible. Former Attorney General William Barr condemned the president’s role in the attack and accused the president of orchestrating a mob and called his actions a “betrayal of his office.” Senator Mitt Romney charged his fellow Senators who object to the election results as “complicit” to the riot saying, “What happened here today was an insurrection, incited by the President of the United States.

Epiphany proclaims hope in the midst of despair. Let not the destructive events of yesterday derail us from our goal of liberty and equity for all. No amount of resistance will quell our resolve to fight for freedom, justice, and democracy for all people.

Our country is changing and there is resistance, much of it through violent acts and rhetoric. But we will prevail because whenever you stand for justice, love and inclusion, you stand with God.
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