About 50 people held signs and waved American and Alaska flags Saturday at Wisdom, Knowledge, Faith and Love Park in Homer to protest the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol in Washington D.C.
Some held signs urging Congress to impeach President Donald Trump. Another sign read “Nobody is above the law,” with the words “the Trumps” crossed out. One person held a sign that read “Make America Kind Again,” a play on Trump’s “MAGA” slogan of “Make America Great Again.”
A sign on the gazebo at the park announced that Homer is “a COVID-smart community.” All of the protesters wore face masks. A silent vigil, the protesters also lit candles. Charles Aguilar, a Homer artist, wore a Trump puppet costume he made.
One of the protest organizers, Art Koeninger, said he came to the protest to support Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and her call for Trump to resign. In an interview with the Anchorage Daily News last Friday, Murkowski was the first Republican senator to call for Trump to leave office before his term ends on Jan. 20.
“I want him to resign. I want him out. He has caused enough damage,” Murkowski told the ADN.
Koeninger called the Jan. 6 event in which pro-Trump supporters rushed into the Capitol and caused members of Congress to seek shelter “beyond the pale.” The rioters assaulted Capitol Police, including Brian Sicknick, who later died of his injuries. A pro-Trump supporter who entered the Capitol, Ashli Babbitt, was shot and killed by a Capitol Police officer when she started to climb through a broken door leading into the Speaker’s Lobby. Three other people died of injuries during the event. The rioters also defaced statues, broke furniture, smashed windows and doors, and entered offices.
“I don’t think the people were out to be tourists,” Koeninger said. “Trump was inciting them to go to the Capitol. He was using fighting terms.”
Some people honked and waved enthusiastically in support while a person in a truck drove by and yelled what sounded like an epithet against gay men.