A former Guam resident who has lived in Washington DC for two years shares he was shocked to see protesters lay siege on the Capitol building and attack democracy.
Former Guam resident Anthony Lamorena said: “What really shocked us all was how aggressive the crowd got towards the Capitol building and really usually people just walk up to the steps have their voices heard but this group kept pushing. You see Nancy Pelosi get pulled from the House floor by their security detail. You see the Senate just immediately go into recess and a lot of us watching were wondering what was going on. Then we found out that protesters had breached the Capitol building.”
Lamorena watched from the safety of his home, which is a 10-minute walk from the Capitol building. He shares that he stayed home that day because his mom had a feeling and told him he should stay indoors.
“I think I was very much in shock that this would be happening first of all in the United States of America and second of all, our nation’s capital of all places. I just kind of didn’t know what to feel but there was so much breaking I had to share with them what was going on,” Lamorena said.
Protestors breached the Capitol building making it into the House Floor, Senate floor and fired shots into the House Chamber. Lamorena says he was fearful for his friends that work at the US Capitol as many were under lockdown for hours.
“I have to admit I was afraid to go outside yesterday and even today at first I was kind of hesitant anywhere even to just go for a brisk walk. The District of Columbia Mayor issued a 6 pm curfew and so once 6 pm hit there were FBI SWAT teams, Capitol Hill police, and the Washington D.C. police. There were also police officers from the surrounding counties in Maryland and even Virginia that deployed to Washington DC,” Lamorena said.
Lamorena says that thankfully no one he knew got hurt. But he said the events on Capitol Hill have him reflecting on the differences between our communities. He says the lack of sense of community and being neighborly was showcased as hatred on both sides of this debate and politics emerged.
He believes it’s because people in the US don’t know each other and those on opposing political sides are automatically enemies. Unlike Guam, where being neighborly is part of our upbringing.
“So I think that’s what I take from this. I am very proud that I was able to have that kind of upbringing and understand the importance of the sense of community and I wish the people in the United States would heed that warmth,” Lamorena said.