A racist mob broke church windows and threatened to kill Martin Luther King Jr. and the 1,500 activists sitting terrified inside First Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama, in May 1961. The angry men believed in the Lost Cause of the Confederacy and circled the church because, for them, whiteness was more important than democracy.

Almost 60 years later, in January 2021, President Trump rallied supporters to storm the U.S. Capitol and stop the certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s victory. Calling it a “rigged election,” Trump greenlit a stampede that led to the mob killing an officercrushing another one, and placing two pipe bombs to kill “traitors.” Police whisked politicians to safe rooms as insurrectionists broke into the Senate Chamber. Some waved Confederate flags and one had on an Auschwitz hoodie. Again, whiteness was more valued than democracy.

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