These people, incited by none other than a sitting President, Donald Trump, entered the historic building at a time when the US Senate and House of Representatives were in session to certify the electoral college victory of President-elect Joe Biden
What a contrast!
Two weeks from Wednesday (January 20), the United States Capitol, the meeting place of the Congress and the seat of the legislative branch of the federal government, was occupied by a vicious mob that was described as domestic terrorists by the media and politicians.
These people, incited by none other than a sitting President, Donald Trump, entered the historic building at a time when the US Senate and House of Representatives were in session to certify the electoral college victory of President-elect Joe Biden.
The rioters wanted to overturn the democratic will of the US voters. They reportedly wanted to kill some high-profile lawmakers, including Vice-President Mike Pence, who was under tremendous pressure from Trump to illegally keep him president for another four years.
Eventually, the terrorists who stormed the Capitol causing several deaths were evacuated and the Congress did what it was supposed to do. It certified the victory of Democratic nominees Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the president and vice president.
On Wednesday noon (night in Bangladesh), Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th president of the US while Kamala Harris as the vice-president. They took the oath of the office in the same Capitol that was a crime scene two weeks before.
The democracy of the most powerful country of the world both in terms of militarily and economically was tested for last two months if not beyond. But, at the end of the day, the world has seen that democracy has prevailed because there is a strong democratic system in place that has gained strength from being practiced for more than over two centuries. It is the very system due to which any individual or a bunch of lawmakers cannot get the results in their own way.
The system also created every institution so strong that individuals supporting a particular party have to go in line with the will of the majority.
And, the system also created a culture of civility and accepting defeats which is an integral part of democracy. The presence of former presidents and vice-presidents, senators, representatives and leaders from both the Democratic and Republican parties at the inauguration is the reflection of a functioning democracy.
One shining example of the January 20 inauguration was that a Republican senator was the chair of the committee that was responsible for organizing the day's ceremony go smoothly. Of course, speaking on the occasion, the senator said that on the day of inauguration not everyone was happy. And, he is absolutely right. Democracy means winning and losing in a fair manner.
Conscious Americans, including the new president, believe democracy cannot be taken for granted and that there is always room for improvement to make democracy. And, everyone should work unitedly in this regard.
Having experienced the developments of the US in last two months, democracy-loving people of countries with no democracy or little democracy cannot help but be sad and reflective. Despite enjoying near perfect democracy, if the US leadership can talk about improving it further, then what their leaderships should do, they would think.
Firstly, it is extremely necessary to accept the necessity of democracy to govern a country more effectively. Secondly, all-out effort must be there to develop a democratic system that will strengthen the institutions in order for them to protect democracy.
Like every system, democracy has its own flaws. But, the world is yet to invent a better system than democracy to govern a nation effectively for the good of its people.