I watched the scenes from Washington during Wednesday’s insurrection with a combination of horror, disbelief, and deja vu. The day’s events should alarm us all, and portend several looming threats to our Republic that persist.

The first among them is policing. We have called to shift funding from traditional policing not only because police are relentlessly violent in our communities, but also because the ridiculous sums we shower on police budgets are effectively wasted.

Nothing proved that more visibly than seeing Confederate flags paraded through the U.S. Capitol. Where is the “defense” on which we’re squandering $750 billion every year?

Beyond incompetence, the insurrection also exposed double standards pervading policing.

I’ve organized protests in Washington larger than yesterday’s mob, and found police vastly less accommodating. I was also arrested in the Senate in 2015 for simply asking a question after the conclusion of a hearing that no one has ever bothered asking, either before or since: why does James Clapper have a generous government pension despite lying to the Senate about unconstitutional mass surveillance, while Eric Garner (like George Floyd) ended up getting killed in the street based on the mere suspicion of a trivial offense?

The answer is troubling, and also explains the phenomenon of fascists ending up storming the Capitol, while protesters in the movement for black lives face much more brutal state repression.

While yesterday’s insurrection thankfully failed, it’s important to consider several ways in which the threat it indicates remains—and will likely grow.

First, among our Republic’s saving graces were the defections from the President by figures ranging from multiple White House personnel to Vice President Pence, Senate Majority (soon-to-be Minority) Leader Mitch McConnell, and others. We can’t let those figures rehabilitate themselves by recalling their oaths of office only now, after years of disregarding them.

But more importantly, what would have happened if Pence did side with the President? Or if McConnell hadn’t abandoned him? Or if the courts sided with any of his legal challenges.

We can pretend that the crisis confronting our democracy is over—but that would frankly be foolish. The underlying preconditions for yesterday’s spectacle remain in place, starting with a criminal president unafraid to invite violence targeting government institutions.

That’s why removing Trump from office remains an absolute imperative, whether through the 25th Amendment (which Pence is in a unique position to exercise) or impeachment (which will require Nancy Pelosi to support the Squad).

Some may think these measures to be a distraction with the transition to the new administration looming. That would be a profound mistake. First, there’s no assurance that the transition will happen as long as Trump remains in office. He has already indicated his willingness to stop at nothing to retain power. We should take him at his word.

Moreover, however we manage to wrest Trump out of the White House, precedents are established in moments like these that will ultimately long outlive the crisis itself. Future presidents will learn their limits—or discover their impunity—in the example established in the coming days.

That’s why I support the Articles of Impeachment drafted by Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), as well as the intention of Rep. Cori Bush (D-MO) to remove Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) from the Senate. Having grown up in Missouri, I’m frankly appalled at seeing a Senator from my home state participate in so brazen an assault on our most fundamental norms. We cannot allow these acts to be rewarded with impunity.

Another possibly counter-intuitive threat emerges from a different vector: the likely response to yesterday’s events will include further erosions of civil liberties. The assault on the Capitol was a legitimate national security crisis. Every other such crisis in memory has been leveraged as a pretext by self-aggrandizing intelligence agencies to claim new powers that have in turn dramatically eroded the right to dissent.

Finally, I see this week’s events as an unfortunate vindication of concerns that I have raised for nearly 20 years. Many of us have been challenging fascism in the U.S., recognizing it rising under our feet since (and frankly, well before) the Bush v. Gore decision.

Indeed political violence in the U.S. may be unconstitutional—but it is sadly all too American.

Stay alert in the coming days. Our democracy has weathered a storm, but the skies are far from clear. Voices in Congress calling for accountability may encounter headwinds, and will need our support from coast-to-coast.