These are all toxic ingredients that fueled the disaster we are witnessing, and they were all incited and led by the President of the United States. An I told you so is useless. Rather, this is a lesson about what not to do in the future; what to avoid in other democracies.
Unfortunately, the insurrection we witnessed brought to light, without doubt and among other degrading issues, the discrimination suffered by different minorities, but especially by Black people, in the United States. Contrasts have flooded social networks: the police deployment to protect the Capitol was incomprehensibly weak. The police handling of the insurgents – mostly white men – highlights the systemic racism inside the police forces, especially when compared to the treatment of protesters from the Black Lives Matter movement during last year's protests .
As of today, January 8, 2020, not a single insurgent has been prosecuted by justice and no single person was removed in handcuffs from the Capitol on Wednesday. The Black Lives Matter protesters did not receive this treatment, as they ran into riot police in every protest, tear gas, degrading treatment and hundreds of detentions.
The wave of resignations in the administration and the denunciations of Republican congressmen and women are not and will not be enough. They were complicit in this abuse of power and racism for four years, exacerbating the discrimination that Black people in the United States face every day and that has occurred for centuries in American society.
In the end, what happened in the US Capitol is one more wake-up call about the fragility of democracies and about the work involved in keeping them standing – a job that should never be taken for granted. Confronting populist forces, both on the far-right and far-left, on the rise around the world, is a first step. The important thing will always be to keep an active watch on the quality of democracy in our political systems and those who lead them, taking into account that our vote is, in a democracy, our most powerful tool.
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