Things That Matter

AOC Feared She Would Be Sexually Assaulted the Day Of the Insurrection, Surfacing Past Traumas

Screenshot via CNN

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has been candid before about the fear she felt the day of the January 6th Capitol insurrection. On Instagram back in February, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez revealed that she thought she was going to die on that day. Now, she’s being even more detailed about the fears that were running through her mind during those attacks at the Capitol. In a recent interview, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez says that she wasn’t just afraid that extremists would kill her, she was also afraid they would sexually assault her.

In an interview with CNN’s Dana Bash, AOC revealed that she was afraid that the insurrectionists were going sexually assault her before killing her.

“White supremacy and patriarchy are very linked in a lot of ways,” she told Bash. “There’s a lot of sexualizing of that violence and I didn’t think that I was just going to be killed, I thought other things were going to happen to me as well.”

It was then that Bash clarified, “So, it sounds like what you’re telling me right now is that you didn’t only think you were going to die, you thought you were going to be raped.” Ocasio-Cortez nodded in agreement and said, “Yeah, yeah. I thought I was.”

In the past, Rep. AOC has divulged that she gets dozens of death and rape threats on a daily basis. In May of last year, the congresswoman tweeted: “I‘ve had mornings where I wake up & the 1st thing I do w/ my coffee is review photos of the men (it’s always men) who want to kill me.”

Rep. Ocasio-Cortez said that one of the reasons that she feared being raped was because she is a sexual assault survivor.

In February of this year, Ocasio-Cortez took to Instagram live to reveal to her audience that she has been sexually assaulted before. “I’m a survivor of sexual assault and I haven’t told many people that in my life,” she said while visibly emotional. “When we go through trauma, trauma compounds on each other…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.”

“Survivors have a very strong set of skills,” Ocasio-Cortez told Bash. “And the skills that are required as a survivor, the tools that you build for resilience, they come back in right away. And for me, I felt like those skills were coming right back so that I could survive.”

Later, reporter Dana Bash explained to her CNN colleagues how AOC believes the media fuels the sexualized violence directed at her.

“One of the other bits of conversation that we had is about how she’s portrayed on conservative media, particularly in Fox News,” said Bash. “And how, when she’s talking about sexualizing, a lot of that is making her not just the enemy, but doing it in a way that highlights her age, her gender, and her beauty.”

The wide-ranging interview in which Ocasio-Cortez discusses all of this is called “Being…AOC” and will air tonight at 9 p.m. ET on CNN.

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