Boston Mayor Marty Walsh and religious leaders made separate calls for racial justice, Thursday, in response to the brazen pro-Trump riots in Washington, D.C. a day earlier.
Walsh said discrepancies in how law enforcement officials responded to the riots at the Capitol and racial justice protests over the summer showed the country needs to work together bridge a widening partisan divide.
"We need to start moving forward, we need to start resolving conflicts in our country," he said during a press conference on the city's coronavirus response. "We need to battle and deal with systemic racism; we need to battle with racism. We need to start talking and moving forward now."
Walsh pointed to the some 74 million people who voted for President Donald Trump in the 2020 election to illustrate what he described as a deeply divided nation.
"We're at a crossroads," he said. "We have to fix this country. We have to address those problems."
Walsh said he believes Trump should be removed from office for "encouraging" the rioters, joining several Massachusetts lawmakers who believe the president should be ousted by either the 25th amendment or impeachment.
Later in the day, Rev. Eugene Rivers III also contrasted the law enforcement responses to racial justice protestors and the pro-Trump mob.
"Law-abiding citizens who were Black, protesting legitimately, were abused and exploited as opposed to the absolutely inconceivable violation of the rule of law with criminal conduct, who paid no price," he said. "The world saw it...and shame on our country."
Rivers called on faith communities across the country to vocally denounce white supremacy.
"Either we are going to stand for God and justice or we will be exposed as cowards an hypocrites," he said.
Gov. Charlie Baker delivered a scathing rebuke of his party's president and President Donald Trump's response to the unrest, saying Trump should be removed from office and that the vice president should lead the transition.
"The whole thing makes me sick," Baker said in a coronavirus press conference. "Yesterday's riot was a dark moment for our country, made even more depressing by the president's role leading up to it and his wholly inadequate and appalling response to the violence."
Walsh on Wednesday issued a joint statement with members of the Boston City Council condemning the riot.
In the statement, Walsh and the councilors said Trump was responsible for "fomenting" the riots, which aimed to overturn the results of the 2020 election.
Several U.S. lawmakers from Massachusetts have called for Trump's removal from office, either by the 25th amendment or impeachment.