The racism of the rioters came into focus at the January 6 hearing

The previous public review of the Capitol Uprising on January 6 only hinted at this: dozens of thugs not only used makeshift weapons, stun guns, and fists to attack the police, but they also used racist libel and treason charges.

Four police officers, two from the U.S. Capitol Police and two from the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington, DC, detailed on Tuesday the racism and prejudice they encountered during the violent attack on the Capitol. Their direct, painful narrative lists the time when the pro-police sentiments of Trump supporters were put aside and swallowed by the anger that wanted him to stay in the White House.

Congressman Harry Dunn told lawmakers about his communication with the mob and they objected to President Joe Biden’s defeat of former President Donald Trump in the last presidential election. When Dunn, who was black, argued with the mob that he voted for Biden and his votes should be counted, the crowd started throwing N at him.

“A woman in a pink’MAGA’ (Making America Great Again) shirt shouted,’You heard it, guys, these n votes went to Joe Biden!'” said Dunn, who already works at the White House For more than ten years. Congressional police force.

“Then the crowd, maybe about 20 people, joined in, screaming’Shhh! F–n–!” He testified. He said that when he was wearing a uniform, no one called him the N word. That night, he sat in the rotunda of the Capitol and cried.

Prior to Tuesday’s hearing, Adam Schiff, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and member of the panel, said that officials in the Capitol and Washington, DC will provide insights on “what it is like to work on the front lines”.

However, Dunn also talked about his experience as an African-American police officer, who accounted for 29% of the approximately 2,300 officers and civilians serving in the Capitol Police Force.

Dunn said that another black male policeman told him that during the confrontation with the mob on January 6, he was told, “Put down your gun, and we will show you what kind of person you are-you really are. Yes!”

The chairman of the panel, Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson of Mississippi, put further pressure on Dunn, asking him how he feels as an African-American official fighting racists and enduring racial slander in the Hall of Democracy.

“It’s frustrating that such people will attack you because of your skin color,” Dunn replied. “Once I can deal with it, it will be hurt. My blood is red. I am an American citizen. I am a policeman. I am a sheriff.”

According to the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics, although black Americans make up about 13% of the U.S. population, in a 2016 sample survey of 18,000 local law enforcement agencies in the U.S., they accounted for about 11% of all police officers. In 2016, more than 71% of police officers were white.

Police experts say that it is the treatment of black men and women in law enforcement that makes the recruitment and diversity of the U.S. police force challenging. The law enforcement industry has also been struggling because it originated in the United States, and its history can be traced back to the slave patrol in the early 1700s, which aimed to catch people fleeing slavery and intimidate the enslaved to submit. Although many African Americans have served bravely in local and federal police forces since the Civil Rights Movement, statistics show that the number of black Americans arrested is still disproportionate and more likely to be shot by police.

Another congressional police sergeant. Aquilino Gonell wiped away his tears when he recalled the story of his immigration from the Dominican Republic to the United States, but faced fellow Americans who thought he was a traitor who defended the Capitol on January 6. .

“It’s very disappointing,” Goner said. “I saw many policemen fighting against the people, thugs (and) citizens for their lives, and turned against us.”

Iraq War veteran Goner also called for Different law enforcement responses In 2020, in the racial justice protests that followed the murder of George Floyd, the reaction to the overwhelming majority of white mobs and the deaths of other black Americans.

“When the United States and the world watched us in horror at what happened in the Capitol, we did not get the timely reinforcements and support we needed,” he said. “In contrast, in the Black Lives Matter protests last year, the U.S. Capitol Police got all the support we needed, and more. Why did they react differently?”

In fact, law enforcement agencies in dozens of cities showed overwhelming power against BLM demonstrators last year. Many people use chemical dispersants, rubber bullets, and hand-to-hand combat with the basically peaceful crowds and some unruly saboteurs and looters. By the end of 2020, the police had arrested more than 14,000 people.

In January, with the appearance of images and videos of the attack on the Capitol, the racist and anti-Semitism elements of the mob became apparent. A man was photographed holding a Confederate battle flag in the Capitol.

In the nearly seven months after the attack, more video investigations revealed that several mobs flashed signs of white supremacist gangs and “white power” signs during the riots.

Gonell also pointed out the hypocrisy he saw from many mobs professing to support law enforcement — the “thin blue line” — but disagreed with those who protested against Freud last summer.

“When someone kneeled for social justice while playing the national anthem, some people expressed anger,” Dunn said. “Where are the people who express their anger and condemn the violent attacks on law enforcement officers, the U.S. Capitol, and our American democracy?”

“I’m still waiting for that,” he said.


Morrison reports from New York. He is a member of the Associated Press’s racial and ethnic team. Follow him on Twitter:

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