Updated: Feb 13
By Siga Sakho
Image via Coursera
The event of January 6th has been noted in the U.S. and worldwide as one of the most unprecedented modern-day actions taken by rioters on the house of our country's democracy. Not only has this event threatened the sake of our country's government, but It has also left a stain on this nation’s reputation as the rest of the world watches the unfolding truth of what happened that day.
The UK has expressed through an Article from BBC news their opinion of various leaders as the majority have condemned such actions taken by these self-proclaimed patriots as an act out of pure violence and hatred against the U.S. home of democracy. The UK’s Prime Minister, Boris Johnson who is known for at times being is similar to Trump, called the attack a "disgraceful scene” saying in a tweet, "The United States stands for democracy around the world and it is now vital that there should be a peaceful and orderly transfer of power." This stance of unsettling violence has been the theme for more leaders in the UK, as many followed Johnson's footprints. Some say it was a “direct attack on democracy,” and “utterly horrifying.”
Moving away from the UK, in China, Hong Kong's pro-democracy activists and supporters were outraged at the events from the capital and compared it to those of pro-democracy protesters who stormed Hong Kong's Legislative Council last year. Chinese spokeswomen of foreign ministry, Hua Chunying also claimed that the events in Hong Kong were more "severe" than those in Washington but "not one demonstrator died." An article from MSN news also added to what happened during the mob incident in China, saying that the mob conducted similar acts to those in the U.S. as they stormed Hong kong's parliament smashing windows, spray-painting the walls, and defacing portraits of lawmakers.
Additionally, President of Mexico Andrés Manuel López Obrador expressed in the article by MSN his regrets in the loss of life during the capitol siege, and also gave insight about his motion to lead an international group to stop the media from exerting too much power a week after Trump was banned from social media platforms. President López Obrador said, “I can tell you that at the first G-20 meeting we have, I am going to make a proposal on this issue. Yes, social media should not be used to incite violence and all that, but this cannot be used as a pretext to suspend freedom of expression.” I believe Mexico’s president is right because social media has grown and evolved into a large platform where individuals can connect from anywhere in the world. Recently, the use of various platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and more have shown to be falling into the wrong hands. If something is not done to make sure people are staying safe and not falling into the traps of lies, radical/extremism that some militia groups and conspiracy theorists are promoting on these platforms, scenes such as those in the capital are deemed to happen again.
Lastly, In France, French President Emmanual Macron shared similar views to those in the UK. As written in a BBC article, Macron said, "When, in one of the world's oldest democracies, supporters of an outgoing president take up arms to challenge the legitimate results of an election, a universal idea - that of 'one person, one vote' - is undermined.” He later stated, "What happened today in Washington DC is not American. We believe in the strength of our democracies. We believe in the strength of American democracy." Like Macron said, the event at the capital was not American and should not be seen by those in the nation and by the rest of our world as something that embodies the true values of this country. It was an attack on our democracy, something that has been taken advantage of by those causing such actions, and the instigators. This devastating event should stay in the past but not forgotten, and as American philosopher George Santayana once said “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
Written by writer Siga Sakho