DISCLAIMER: My opinions will not be expressed within the article. The only opinions expressed are within the anonymous responses of the participants. *The opinions in this article do not reflect Her Campus Media or Rochester Institute of Technology*
Much like the year 2020, the 6th of January 2021 was an unprecedented event. No matter what you believe, I think we can all agree that these events were extreme and terrifying. What I’ve always admired about our generation is that we are forming our opinions on controversy and politics from an early age. I knew that after the attack on the Capitol some significant conversations were going to come from it. Here are my conversations with three fellow college students, based off the following questions:
If you were against Black Lives Matter riots, but participated in or supported the riots at the Capitol, what changed your mind about rioting?
Do you believe that the riots at the Capitol were less violent, more violent, or equally as violent as the Black Lives Matter riots?
Do you think the tense standoffs between the protesters and police at the Capitol represented or misrepresented the message of Blue Lives Matter?
Question 1 Response: I was against Black Lives Matter riots, and also against the events that occurred in DC. However, I strongly believe that most of the protesters in Washington were radical Antifa members, with the intent of creating chaos throughout America. If people go around believing that it wasn’t them, they are getting exactly what they want.
Question 2 Response: I personally feel it was less violent in the sense that the Black Lives Matter riots have caused continuous destruction of large cities over the course of 9 months; while this was a significantly damaging event, it only occurred over the course of a day.
Question 3: In my opinion, Black Lives Matter damaged the image of the police force far more than the events in DC. The ratio of officers injured during the riot in Washington does not compare to the amount of damage done to the police force during Black Lives Matter.
Question 1 Response: I have always made it a point to look at things objectively. That said, I think it is disgusting to praise any sort of rioting, whether that is Black Lives Matter or the Capitol attacks. However, it makes me question why the media is expressing so much rage towards the riot on the Capitol, while those looting during the Black Lives Matter riots were being defended. It’s hypocritical. Though I believe in the message of Black Lives Matter, I just can’t wrap my head around why people felt there was a need to cause significant damage. Our country is in a horrible place right now; there’s no denying that, but there is no place for violence.
Question 2 Response: I think the level of violence is similar. Despite the violence at the Capitol being on a smaller scale than the Black Lives Matter riots, it was far more serious, as it was an attack on the government. To me, it’s not about the severity of either, it’s about the fact that both are riots, and both are wrong, in my opinion.
Question 3 Response: I personally don’t believe that this has any correlation with the Blue Lives Matter movement.
This person made a few general statements that tied all three questions together.
I don’t support either of the riots. In my opinion, Black Lives Matter riots were worse. No people that support Blue Lives Matter would act in any way to disrespect them. There has also been speculation that Antifa members also participated in DC. I think if this is true, they were there to worsen the image of Trump supporters.
I would like to thank the participants of this article for providing insightful responses. Again, I admire our generation for being so outspoken. To all people of different beliefs- let’s continue to have these educational conversations and open one another’s perspectives. We are the future!