Like almost every other aspect of the past year, Wednesday’s inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won’t look like any we’ve seen before. Aside from the alterations that have been made due to the coronavirus pandemic, the special measures being taken because of the January 6 attacks on the U.S. Capitol and the ongoing threat of violence from Trump loyalists mean that this day will be a terrifyingly unique moment in history.
The security measures are extensive. As many as 25,000 troops have been deployed to Washington, D.C. The National Mall, normally filled with as many as one million spectators, has been declared off limits, and barricades circle the Capitol where the inauguration ceremony will take place.