Historical significance of the attack on the Capitol

Throughout American history there is an unfortunate pattern of attacks on democracy like the insurrection at the Capitol. These attacks are mainly domestic terrorism and are perpetrated by white nationalist groups.

In an attempt to prevent the certification of a fair election, insurrectionists attacked the Capitol on January 6, but the seemingly unprecedented act is similar to behavior exhibited throughout US history.
While the coup on January 6 failed, there has been a successful coup in American history before, meaning that the attack on the Capitol is definitely not the first attack on a democratically elected government.
According to Smithsonian Magazine, in 1898 white supremacists overthrew the democratically elected government of Wilmington, North Carolina. The violent attack led to the destruction of the local newspaper and the elected officials were replaced– with white supremacists.
Unfortunately, the events at Wilmington are still possible today. It was proven the moment that white supremacists stormed and occupied the Capitol building.
The attack on the Capitol was not done by patriots or republicans, it was done by white supremacists. This draws an unfortunate parallel to the Wilmington Massacre because neither event was about politics or election fraud- it was about white supremacy.
This is blatantly obvious by the displays of white power symbols, the confederate flag and Nazi symbols, according to CNN.
It is also not unusual for members of the government to be a part of or incite these attacks on democracy. The Atlantic even cited former Congressman Alfred Moore Waddell as the leader of the white supremacists in Wilmington.
The insurrection at the Capitol was not independent of the government, it was incited by members of it. The attack was preempted by tweets from President Donald Trump telling his supporters to be in D.C. on January 6. The tweets have since been removed for violating Twitter’s policies by inciting violence.
Trump was not the only member of the government to spout lies about a ‘stolen election,’ leading to the disruption of the electoral college certification. Congress members like Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley spread misinformation surrounding the election.
On January 10, newly elected Representative Cori Bush tweeted that she would be submitting a resolution to expel members of Congress complicit in the insurrection.
“Tomorrow, I’m introducing my resolution to expel the members of Congress who tried to overturn the election and incited a white supremacist coup attempt that has left people dead. They have violated the 14th Amendment,” Bush said in her message.
If Bush’s resolution passes, it will not be the first time members of Congress are expelled for supporting a movement against American democracy.
In 1861-1862, the Senate expelled 14 members for their support of the Confederate rebellion. If members of Congress are expelled it will be for their betrayal of America by inciting an insurrection.
While many may continue to say that the insurrection at the Capitol was an unprecedented event in American history, it follows a pattern of white nationalists attempting to divide the country by attacking democracy.