PALCUS condemns the acts of violence and domestic terrorism that transpired in and around our nation’s capital and in particular, within the Capitol Building last week.
We mourn the loss of life that resulted from these despicable acts. We mourn the loss of US Capitol Police Officer, Brian D. Sicknick, who perished because of his injuries. While any loss of life due to violence is lamentable, it is especially tragic that Officer Sicknick perished while defending the seat of our government from rioters and violent protestors.
Freedom of speech and the right to assemble as protected rights in the First Amendment do not and cannot ever include insurrection and violent acts that threaten the integrity of our democracy or the physical safety of those elected to represent us. What occurred at the Capitol Building was a disgraceful attempt to interrupt the democratic process as provided in the Constitution of the United States.
Those who took part in inciting these acts are just as responsible as those who broke windows¸ assaulted law enforcement officials, scaled walls, entered secured offices, and tore down protective barriers. Every person responsible for the events of January 6 should be fully prosecuted.
We regret that the political climate in the United States has reached a boiling point resulting in these terrible acts.
The world watched in real-time as the core of American democracy was threatened. As a nation, we watched in horror as people that do not in any way represent American values attempted to destroy what Americans of all races, religions, and ethnic backgrounds have worked almost 250 years to build. It is now up to us, as a nation, to work to restore democracy and American principles as we unite against extremism. We must begin the healing process by holding perpetrators accountable and by voicing our inviolate belief that our democratic institutions are sacred grounds.
As a voice for the national Portuguese American community, PALCUS will work toward goals of standing up for democracy and equality so that all Portuguese Americans can be proud of the nation that welcomed them and their ancestors with open arms.
As always, PALCUS urges all Portuguese Americans to exercise their civic rights by expressing their needs and opinions directly to your respective senators and representatives. Do not hesitate to identify yourself as their constituent with a voice to be heard.