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‘Democracy can not stop’ | Charlotte city leaders share thoughts on US Capitol riots

Charlotte City Council member Malcolm Graham said the riot will go down in history.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — All eyes were on Washington, D.C. as thousands rushed the U.S. Capitol Building to object to the count of the Electoral College votes. Back in the Charlotte area, city leaders watched the chaos unfold and shared the change they say must come from this.

“We need to have a peaceful transfer of power that is going to occur in two weeks and that process starts today,” Charlotte City Councilmember Malcolm Graham said.

He called Wednesday's riot “an assault on democracy” and, like many others, he is left wondering how this could have ever happened.

RELATED: Security concerns rise after chaos at the Capitol

“Where was the security today?" he said. "And that’s why so many people of color in our community feel there [are] two types of justice systems.”

Graham said he believes if the same mob that stormed the Capitol involved Black and brown people, the outcome may have been much different.

“I’ve never seen so many rioters or mobs treated so politely and that’s the juxtaposition," Graham said.

RELATED: 'America is better than this' | NC lawmakers, leaders condemn violence at Capitol

In comparison, he’s referring to the force and more aggressive police response used during some Black Lives Matter protests this summer.

“This is what happens when you see white privilege close and personal, “ Graham said. “This is just a failed attempt as a political coup and it will go down in American history.”

But despite the chaos, Graham says there is still work to be done for lawmakers to fulfill their duty and certify the election results.

“Democracy can not stop," Graham said.

David Taylor, President of the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts and Culture also shared this statement regarding his thoughts on the Capitol riots saying in part:

“Do not allow shenanigans to turn our attentions away from the historic progress being made.”

Credit: Harvey B. Gantt Center