Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has proven repeatedly she won’t be silent when it comes to the terrorism that occurred at the Capitol riot, which took place on January 6. Shortly after the riot, the congresswoman posted a lengthy conversation she had with her followers via Instagram Live about what she experienced when Donald Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol Building. She revealed she had a “close encounter” and did not know if she was going to “make it to the end of the day alive.” Now she’s detailing her experience again and, this time, explaining the trauma she’s experienced from also being a survivor of sexual assault.
“The reason I say this and the reason I’m getting emotional in this moment is because these folks who tell us to move on, that it’s not a big deal, that we should forget what’s happened, or even telling us to apologize,” AOC said during her Instagram Live on February 1. “These are the same tactics of abusers. And, um, I’m a survivor of sexual assault.”
She continued, “And I haven’t told many people that in my life. But when we go through trauma, trauma compounds on each other. And so, whether you had a a neglectful parent, and—or whether you had someone who was verbally abusive to you, whether you are a survivor of abuse, whether you experience any sort of trauma in your life, small to large—these episodes can compound on one another.”
The events that occurred on January 6 are harrowing to hear from someone who experienced them first-hand. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez detailed how she hid, fearing for her life as she heard the insurgence begin. At one point she went to Congresswoman Katie Porter’s office for safety. Porter recalled her experience with AOC while appearing on MSNBC.
“I remember her saying to me, ‘I knew I shouldn’t wear heels. How am I going to run?’” Porter recalled. After that, Porter gave AOC a pair of sneakers in case she had to run for her life. Thankfully she did live through that day and is continuing the fight to ensure “individuals responsible are held to account.”