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Trump Supporters Attempt a Coup at the U.S. Capitol: A Double Standard in Police Response and a Way Forward for the African Diaspora

Jan 10, 2021 08:00AM ● By Nana Ama Addo
capitol building trump riot

Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

On January 6th, Trump supporters, including the Proud Boys militia and QAnon, White nationalist terrorist groups, stormed the US State Capitol in protest of Trump losing the 2020 presidential election. This ambush of the US Capitol was met with an underwhelming response by the police force. The stark difference in police response in this event as compared to the Black Lives Matter phenomenon last year reveals an insidious inequality and obvious double standard.

Initially, according to a Defense Department official, the Pentagon denied a request to employ the National Guard to quell the riots. By the end of the heist, five people died, a number that pales in comparison to how many would have perished had this community been Black. The United States police force demonstrated that it is able to exercise non-violent policing strategies, but unwilling to do so when it comes to Black communities. President elect Joe Biden also spoke out against the double standard that exists in policing Black versus White communities, but will he do anything about it when his term begins? 


Last year, Black Lives Matter protests rippled throughout the United States and protestors faced violent backlash. During the protests, the world witnessed the police and national guard fire rubber bullets, tear gas, 1960s style water pressure hose and more on peaceful protestors.The double standard presented by the police’s response illustrates the poison of racism and dangers of inequality. When the next term begins, the public will witness the transformation or lack of in the police force structures. However, we cannot afford to wait as bystanders.

What president elect Joe Biden described as a ‘small number of extremists’ represents White America’s struggle to overcome a deeply rooted bigotry, and as White masses grapple with their legacy, now is the time for the Black diaspora to organize. We built the White House, we built the U.S. Capitol, and we built the U.S. Now it is time to build collective progress.

Changemakers of the African diaspora would benefit from enhanced collaboration and building stronger foundations of protection and intergenerational wealth. The Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) has been officially launched, and as this endeavor grows to create the largest free trade area on the globe, intercontinental African trade is poised to thrive. Learn more about AfCFTA here. Ghana has launched ‘Beyond the Return’, a 10 year initiative to create opportunities for the descendants of the slave trade to connect with the country. With the ‘Right of Return’ mandate in effect for the African diaspora’s formerly enslaved, diasporan communities can obtain Ghanaian citizenship without going through the process as a regular foreigner.

The battle for Black liberation continues. Here are some activist organizations of the African diaspora to support/donate your time and resources to:

Black Nation Network 

Black Lives Matter Philly 

EIN Nigeria 

Women’s Empowerment for Change 


Nana Ama Addo is a writer, multimedia strategist, film director and storytelling artist. She graduated with a BA in Africana Studies from the College of Wooster, and has studied at the University of Ghana and Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology. Visit her storytelling brand at, and connect with her creative agency on Instagram: @chitheagency.