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Tuesday, January 18, 2022

A ‘simple’ gesture: Congressmen reflect on picture that went viral in the wake of Capitol riots

Rep. Andy Kim, dn.j. For, the Capitol riots of January 6 remain a difficult topic to discuss with their two young Asian American children. He is struggling to find the right words.

“When I saw my kids for the first time since January 6th, my eldest came up to me and hugged me and asked me if I was doing okay. They know something happened, but I really told them about it. Haven’t talked about it,” Kim said. “Now the question is like this: How does January 6th fit into the wider story of this country? How are we going to talk about it?”

A picture of Kim cleaning the capital rotunda after the riots went viral. The internet saw the act as a moment of hope after hours of chaos.

A year later, he’s still processing his thoughts as the son of Korean immigrants who spent their lives looking for a strong, safe country to call home, something that was unclear that day. He told NBC Asian America. But the events, he said, also exposed a sense of fierce security in the country at the behest of his parents.

Kim said, “I feel like the feeling of being a caretaker is something that my parents very much shaped in my mind – love for the country and serving this country, caring, trying to preserve it.” Do it,” said Kim. “Whether it’s the big things I tried to do, like voting to confirm the Electoral College vote on the night of January 6, or the simple gestures of sweeping the floor of the rotunda. To me it’s all the same. All this is a caretaker for our democracy.”

Then-candidate Andy Kim plays a word-game with his son as his wife, Kammi Lai, watches with their younger son outside a polling place on November 6, 2018 in Bordentown, NJ. (Mel Evans / AP file)

In the year since Kim found himself cleaning up damage at the Capitol, more than 700 supporters of former President Donald Trump, many of whom aimed to reverse the election results, now face criminal charges related to the assault. .

A House committee investigating the incidents is preparing to present its findings in the coming months. Relics from that day have also been collected and donated to the Smithsonian Institution for historical documentation, including Neale J. Crew suit Kim wore while emptying debris in a garbage bag.

The Congressman said he now feels “an even stronger sense of love for this country and patriotism”, because of the reflection he made on his parents and his chosen home.

Kim, the son of a scientist and a nurse, said his family’s American dream never included “private jets or rockets into outer space”. Instead, his parents yearned for a life of dignity and decency, he said. He recalled how he felt toward his new country, reflected in his mother’s reaction to a family visit to Washington, D.C. when he was a child.

“They felt like we could walk there. We had as much right to walk into the building — the Capitol, the White House — as anyone else,” he said.

Decades later, as Kim collected plastic bottles from the ground after rioters left the rotunda, she said she was once again reminded of her parents’ country astonishment when she found a plaque on the wall Which read, “Under this tablet the foundation stone of the United States of America was laid by George Washington.”

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Then-candidate Andy Kim holds his son to finish voting on Nov.  6, 2018, in Bordentown, NJ (Mel Evans/AP File)

Then-candidate Andy Kim holds his son to finish voting on Nov. 6, 2018, in Bordentown, NJ (Mel Evans/AP File)

“It kind of took me out of the moment on January 6th for a second and reminded me of the history of this building, and that generations before me built and preserved the Capitol building,” he said. “And there will be generations after me who will continue to do the work of this country.”

Kim said, the memories inspired her to look at her work through a different lens, shifting her focus to how to recover from the events.

Kim said, “The idea that he traveled halfway around the world to live in a place that didn’t speak his language, had no friends and family — it was something else that attracted him, ‘ said Kim. “I hope January 6th reminds us what it is that has drawn our families here and reminds us that it is worth fighting for. It is worth trying to preserve.”

But as Kim said she felt, she also mentioned that she is concerned about how the country and the government have reacted to the riots. He said he is unsure that his immigrant family has sought stability for his children. To him, the riot represented the country’s long-standing fracture on topics ranging from climate change to pandemics.

“The issue was not just about the storm in the Capitol. It was just about the division in our country,” he said. “And the fact that we live in a country where this type of violence against each other is possible. I really think we are in a worse position than we were a year ago. I think the tragedy of January 6 did not bring us together as a country.

Americans were divided on the events, from the time immediately following to the months after, the research shows.

A poll conducted by the Pew Research Center in the days following the riots showed that 48 percent of Democrats and Democrat-leaning independents expressed dismay, distrust or fear, compared to 27 percent of their Republican counterparts. And 95 percent of Democrats and Democratic leaners put some of the blame on Trump, while nearly half of Republicans felt the same way. Nearly the same percentage of conservatives did not feel that Trump played any role in the incidents.

As time passed, Republican officials, some of whom publicly condemned Trump in the wake of the events, became less open to criticism from their own party. Pew found that the percentage of Republicans accepting those critical of Trump should be “not very” or “not at all,” rising from 56 percent in March to 63 percent in September.

“It bothers me so much that the people who were there, my colleagues and others, some of them, decided to spread lies about what happened for their own political and personal gain,” Kim said. . “We’re in a place where we can’t even know the shared truth about what happened that day.”

As Kim looked back on the events, he said the most important finding was the fragility of American democracy, something he feels cannot be taken lightly.

“Not a day goes by when I’m in the Capitol where I walk around the building, and it doesn’t impress me that January 6th happened. I see it every day,” Kim said. What I’m trying to do is to make that experience something productive with the goal of never having something like this happen again.”

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
World Nation News is a digital news portal website. Which provides important and latest breaking news updates to our audience in an effective and efficient ways, like world’s top stories, entertainment, sports, technology and much more news.
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