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Statement on the Events of January 6, 2021: A New Day of Infamy

Statement on the Events of January 6, 2021: A New Day of Infamy


Behalf of the Nation’s Urban Public School Leaders

By the

Council of the Great City Schools

School leaders, teachers, and educators from the nation’s urban public schools condemn the actions of the violent rioters who stormed and desecrated the Capitol at the encouragement of our president and his enablers. Make no mistake—this was not only an attack on the Capitol building, but on democracy itself. Citizens of the world are watching this display of lawlessness with shock and horror as the world’s beacon of civility—the shining “city upon a hill”—is reduced to a crime scene.  Public school educators everywhere teach our children to respect our leaders, our institutions, and the process by which we as a nation choose our representatives, and we weep now at the loss of innocence and trust these events have wrought. Defiling our capitol and disrupting the work of the people’s House and Senate in an effort to overturn a free and fair election is a betrayal of our founding principles. Unfortunately, we are in this position because our president has lied repeatedly to the American public about who won this election and has promoted the treasonous notion that people should take matters into their own hands in attempting what is nothing short of insurrection.

As we struggle to help our children understand how this happened and what it means, we should be clear about our collective outrage and our commitment to restoring peace and democracy in the months and years to come. Our students have lost so much over the past year, and now they must reconcile what they have been taught about the ideals of our democratic nation with the criminal attacks they are witnessing unfold in our capitol. The process of rebuilding and healing our country is now the great challenge of our lifetimes, and the nation’s public-school educators welcome our responsibility and charge to work toward a brighter future on behalf of our students and our country.

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