On January 6, a mob of supporters loyal to President Trump stormed the Capitol, halting Congress’s counting of the electoral votes to confirm President-elect Biden’s victory. Police evacuated lawmakers from the building in a scene of violence and chaos that has rattled the foundations of American democracy.
The following is a statement from Krish O’Mara Vignarajah, president and CEO of Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service:
“I am heartbroken to witness a violent assault on our democracy and institutions, for which I have the utmost reverence. This chaos has been fueled by the lies and conspiracy theories of those who refuse to accept the presidential election results, and in turn, the will of the people.
We are a nonpartisan service organization. But we are also a nonprofit driven by a joint mission with the federal government and Congress. And through our work, we try to embrace and advance the values of this nation every day. What we have witnessed today, however, is diametrically opposed to those values: of respect, of decency, of the peaceful and orderly transfer of power.
I can’t help but think of refugees we serve who have fled violent political turmoil in Afghanistan, Iraq, and beyond. The United States promised to be a beacon of democracy and stability where the will of the people matters. It is shameful that this White House has taken, and continues to take, so many actions that undermine that promise.
Today’s events have been overwhelming – as they continue to unfold, I pray for a quick and peaceful resolution, and for the complete restoration of the democratic process. There is much work to be done, but we will get through this, and we will be all the stronger for it.”