Standing My Ground: A Capitol Police Officer's Fight for Accountability and Good Trouble After January 6th (Hardcover)
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New York Times Bestseller
The stirring memoir of Harry Dunn, a Capitol Police Officer on duty January 6th, who has become one of the most prominent and essential voices regarding the truth of that day, and “a must-read for those care about our nation’s future” (Congressman Eric Swalwell).
Walking the halls of democracy as a Capitol Police officer, Harry Dunn was a man slowly experiencing an awakening. It sparked after the election of our first Black president. It grew as his belief in the bravery and honor of law enforcement was shaken by Ferguson and countless other cases of police brutality towards the Black community. It continued to burn brighter as he watched members of Congress, many of whom he had befriended, lose their way to partisanship, as political extremism intensified. And it exploded into a blaze when he fought side by side with his fellow officers on January 6th, when democracy and their lives were threatened.
Standing My Ground is “a powerful, patriotic tale – told with striking moral clarity” (Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi) that provides a crucial, definitive firsthand account of what happened on that day our country was shocked to its core. But it will also share the story of a man who refused to stay quiet when he learned that some of the men and women he had risked his life protecting, who knew him by name, would deny the horrors they faced. That’s when he chose to speak up and to seek out what his hero John Lewis once termed “good trouble.” Dunn’s ongoing story as a witness willing to meaningfully engage with the media, lawmakers, and the public provides a backdrop for examining the political and racial divide in this country—one that we must overcome in order to demand accountability and preserve our precious democracy.
About the Author
Harry Dunn joined the United States Capitol Police (USCP) in 2008 and since 2011 has served at the officer rank as a Private First Class (PFC). PFC Dunn is assigned to a USCP First Responder Unit responsible for maintaining perimeter security around the exterior of the US Capitol. PFC Dunn has been on duty for presidential inaugurations, joint sessions of Congress, and State of the Union addresses, as well as hundreds of peaceful protests and demonstrations. He has also served as a Crisis Intervention Officer responsible for assisting individuals who may be experiencing a mental crisis and, as a member of USCP Crisis Negotiation Teams, has trained to respond to hostage or barricade situations. PFC Dunn also participates in USCP programs and activities to promote equity, diversity, and inclusion. PFC Dunn has received the Presidential Citizens Medal, the Congressional Gold Medal, the Capitol Police Service Medal, the Capitol Police Achievement Medal, the Gus Heningburg Award from the African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey, and the Concerned Black Men Award. PFC Dunn graduated from James Madison University with a BS degree in health science with a concentration in public health education. He lives in Silver Spring, Maryland.
“Officer Harry Dunn is an American hero, whose fidelity to his oath to protect and defend shines through in his new book. Offering an inside look at the daily life of a Capitol Police Officer, readers will gain an appreciation for the work required to ensure that democracy can peacefully proceed. And all will be moved by his piercing honesty: Transporting us to the Capitol grounds on January 6th to witness the unimaginable anguish – and extraordinary courage – of Officer Dunn and his colleagues. In telling his story, Officer Dunn continues to use his thundering voice to demand accountability for that dark day. Standing My Ground is a powerful, patriotic tale – told with striking moral clarity about what happened on January 6th and where the blame lies.”—Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi
“After 150 officers were bloodied and wounded, after a presidential election was nearly overthrown, an exhausted Officer Harry Dunn posed the essential question of January 6 in three simple words: ‘Is this America?’ Now, in this electrifying memoir, Officer Dunn shows us what it means to be a true American patriot in a century where everything is suddenly up for grabs. A remarkable achievement.”—Rep. Jamie Raskin (MD-8)
“Harry Dunn is a cop’s cop – brave, fair-minded – who tells a chilling tale of an unthinkable attack on our democracy. His story is an inspiration to all who protect and serve, and to all who speak out and stand firm against the racism and extremism that poisons our public discourse. This is a must-read for those who care about our nation’s future.”—Congressman Eric Swalwell
“Very gripping.”—Gayle King, CBS Mornings
“Everyone needs to read this.”—Joy Reid, The ReidOut
“Officer Dunn’s book Standing My Ground, it’s a good read.”—Jake Tapper, CNN
“A very powerful and real book.”—Mehdi Hasan, MSNBC
“If you think you’ve read everything you need to know about the violent attempt to overthrow the US government on 6 January 2021, this insider’s book by a 6ft 7in African American Capitol police officer will change your mind….Harry Dunn has written a 237-page cri de coeur for himself and for the US. It is a story that is more important than ever."—The Guardian
“An incredible book, so well written.”—“The Daily Beans” podcast
“Dunn dramatically recounts the hours leading up to the attack….His intimate first-person chronicling of the crowd’s violent surge is as riveting as his account of retreating to his post, covered in pepper spray and bruises, to take a video call from his young daughter. He candidly addresses his mounting frustration and disbelief weeks later as the event’s violent intensity became diluted…. Throughout this forcefully delivered book, Dunn’s passion for true patriotism and the tenets of constitutional democracy resonate, despite his emotional pain and PTSD. A sobering, heroic testimonial about an infamous day in American history.”—Kirkus Reviews