The Capitol Hill Breach Is Similar To BLM “Race Riots”, According To Our Deputy PM

Deputy PM, Michael McCormack can't tell the difference between Black Lives Matter and white supremacy.


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In an interview for radio news breakfast, acting Prime Minister Michael McCormack falsely equated the Black Lives Matter protests with last week’s insurrection of Capitol Hill, dismissing the dynamics of structural racism that clearly separate the two.

The interview was aired this morning, during which Sally Sara asked McCormack whether Donald Trump should be removed from office prior to the end of his term on January 20th. McCormack replied that it was, “a matter entirely for the United States of America,” before continuing, “It is unfortunate that we have seen the events at Capitol Hill, that we’ve seen in recent days — similar to those race riots that we saw around the country last year. These are unfortunate events.”

The “unfortunate events” McCormack is churlishly equivocating could not be more different. One is a protest against four centuries of anti-Black colonial oppression seeking justice for murdered millions, the other is a population of people who refuse to accept they have lost an election fair and square.

But if Mr McCormack can’t tell the difference between these two groups based on the clear social context of their actions, perhaps he might take a look at the difference in the police response.

In the very same city back in June, Black Lives Matter demonstrators a block from Capitol Hill with no sign nor intention of breaching it was treated with a force made up of Washington police, US Park police, over 5,000 national guard troops and federal agencies like the Bureau of Prisons.

Meanwhile, the mob of terrorists on January 6th who were planting a number of white supremacist associated flags inside and around the Capitol Building were greeted with a much lighter deployment.

340 guardsmen were activated in advance, of which 115 were on duty at any one time, mostly helping direct traffic. The DC and Virginia national guard were only deployed in significant numbers after the Capitol had been breached. Even then, the numbers were a fraction of the numbers deployed during the Black Lives Matter protests.

Mr McCormack’s stated views are tone-deaf and dangerously centrist. Equivocating a movement seeking systemic change against anti-Black racism, to a group of people armed with white supremacist symbols attempting to prevent a democratic process shows a clear unwillingness to condemn white supremacy.

If Mr McCormack needs some assistance avoiding these false equivalencies in future, the difference is quite plainly Black and white.

Merryana Salem is a proud Wonnarua and Lebanese–Australian writer, critic, teacher, researcher and podcaster on most social media as @akajustmerry. If you want, check out her podcast, GayV Club where she gushes about LGBT rep in media with her best friend. Either way, she hopes you ate something nice today.