In light of the events in our nation’s capital today, the Western Environmental Law Center issues the following statement:

We are united as an organization in our dedication to the rule of law. It is for this reason we condemn today’s events in Washington, D.C., and President Trump himself in the strongest possible terms. President Trump and his followers have trampled two of our country’s most sacred democratic pillars: the sacred right of the people to choose the next president of the United States, and the peaceful, democratic transition of power.

Storming the U.S. Capitol building is not a Constitutionally protected act of protest. It is an act of sedition and a calculated effort by President Trump and his followers to threaten and use violence to retain power despite losing the presidential election. While this effort will fail, it has done grave damage to our country. We are clear eyed that today’s events are a threat to our democracy and an obstacle to our country’s ability to remedy the confluence of sobering crises caused by the pandemic, racial injustice, climate change, and economic inequity.

In this context, today’s events – encouraged by President Trump and perpetrated by his followers – are obscene. Americans are dying and suffering from the pandemic. Black, Brown, and other people of color must navigate each and every day of their lives under the constant threat of discrimination and violence. The Earth’s climate is unraveling from unbridled fossil fuel pollution. And profiteers rake in billions of dollars on the back of this country’s people while those very same people struggle to pay their rent and put food on the table for their families. Yet, President Trump and his followers have chosen to ignore these crises in service of undemocratic retention of power and contrived grievance.

We call on all Americans of good faith to condemn today’s actions. Republicans, Democrats, and Independents must unite in defense of our country’s democracy and the peaceful transition of power and get to work – together – addressing the serious confluence of crises our country is facing. We must not fail.

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