We are outraged by the violent extremist attacks on the U.S. Capitol today that aimed to subvert our sacred democratic processes and principles.
Our first concern is for the health and safety of our community and our fellow Washingtonians, especially when so many are already suffering the consequences of a failed response to COVID-19. Many in Penn Branch have dedicated their lives to public service, and we stand in solidarity with those brave civil servants and elected officials working now to ensure our democratic procedures continue and the will of the American people is upheld.
Though these abhorrent events happened just blocks away from our community, they could not be farther from the values we stand for in Penn Branch. We cherish democracy, justice, peace, and unity. We abide by the U.S. Constitution, the law, and the agreements we have adopted as a community. We believe in truthfulness and public debate informed by verifiable facts. We respect each other and resolve disagreements peacefully through dialogue.
Today’s violence is the predictable outcome of years of anti-democratic escalation by national leaders and some of their supporters. The attacks, the unacceptable incitement that preceded them, and the woefully inadequate response were fueled in-part by longstanding injustices in the United States.
Systemic racism undermines democracy and must be fully dismantled if our country is to live up to its founding ideals and thrive. Civil society organizations, including ours, have an important role to play in perfecting our union. We pledge to work with all of you to find the best ways to carry-out this responsibility.
We call on all community associations in the District of Columbia and nationwide to speak-out in defense of our democracy and join our community in taking action to address these existential challenges.