The news and social media were abuzz with New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s riveting events of what happened on January 6 during the Capitol riot. According to her, a Capitol police officer burst into her room with “anger and hostility” toward her in his eyes.
She also added that it drudged up feelings of the time she was sexually assaulted. I won’t question as to whether or not that happened. It very well may have, but this information is very new and came up as she was making claims about what happened to her at the capitol, making calling her out the same as denying the story of a sexual assault survivor.
In fact, I’m not questioning her story about anything that happened at the Capitol at all, but I am going to question her version of things. If there’s one thing AOC has proven, it’s that she can really play it up for the cameras. We haven’t known AOC long, but we’ve known her long enough, and she’s shown us she has a history of making things seem a lot more dramatic than they actually are.
Remember when AOC had a breakdown at the border as they were walking children into detention centers. She screamed at border guards and then broke down crying at the atrocities she saw before her. She even used language typically associated with the Holocaust to describe what was going on at the border with these poor immigrants being herded around into cages.
Interestingly, a photographer was ready to capture the drama as a camera-ready AOC and her companions, all bedecked in white, gathered at the fence to scream and cry as these children were helplessly led into their prisons, separated from their parents.
Only it later came out that what AOC was screaming and crying at was an empty road.
From the woman brought you "crying and screaming at an empty parking lot" comes her new hit: "I almost died at the Capitol thanks to Ted Cruz and a police officer." pic.twitter.com/LuRMWrVRfb
— Brandon Morse (@TheBrandonMorse) February 2, 2021
AOC was caught red-handed and she doesn’t really talk about it much anymore.
I don’t doubt that the riot was scary. I don’t doubt that a policeman burst into her office. I doubt, however, that the event was so life-changing that it’s worth talking about a month later and adding all of these new story elements to make it far more interesting. As with the border issue, AOC had an issue she wanted to play up and, simultaneously, make her seem as if she’s the underdog fighting for what is right.
Ocasio-Cortez reminds me of people who sensationalize stories because they want to make themselves seem more interesting due to the fact that their low self-esteem makes them feel like they aren’t very interesting by themselves. While I’m not sure if AOC actually suffers from this problem, I don’t think her reasons for over-dramatizing events are completely divorced from this concept.
She wants you to see her as a brave victim fighting back against the forces of evil on your behalf. This capitol riot, with all these hateful looking policemen and right-wing extremists trying to hunt her down specifically, is just the fuel she needs to make that fire grow bigger. Everyone loves the brave underdog. They get loved, cheered on, and most importantly, voted for.
AOC is going to milk this event because it improves her image and helps her make a point. She’s good and Republicans are bad. She can use it to make unbelievably exaggerated claims about how Ted Cruz attempted to have her murdered with all seriousness.
It’s dramatics for the sake of narrative and reputation.