Aftermath | George Floyd | Part II
Updated: Sep 15
May 25, 2020. The nation held its breath for 8 minutes and 46 seconds as George Floyd fought for his. His gasping pleas begged for an inkling of humanity, but the officer gave him no reprieve. Officer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee harder against Floyed’s neck. George Floyed died wheezing out the words “I can’t breath.”
I thought the word would never forget the discrimination he faced; we would never forget his face.
George Floyd’s death sparked intense riots across the country. We recognized Floyd’s struggle as our own, a reflection of the systemic racism built into the foundation of our society. We remembered our fallen brethren who were victimized by an unjust system. We brought new life to their memory and the movement for equality. We flooded the streets, publicly denouncing racism and calling for change.
Only four days after George Floyd’s death, Dereek Chauvin was charged with third-degree murder. The three other officers present were been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder. Three months after the shooting of Breonna Taylor, the officer responsible was finally fired. Minneapolis lawmakers vowed to disband the city’s police department. Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York pledged to move funding from the city’s police department toward youth and social services. Washington DC, California, Nevada, and Texas have banned choke holds and reviewed police reforms. Congress proposed the Justice in Policing Act of 2020 that eliminates unannounced police raids as “no-knock warrants” and makes it easier to prosecute police for misconduct. Confederate and slavery-linked statues were toppled.
But then time passed. And the news’s broadcast has waned. Major networks aren’t crying for racial equality with the same vigor as before.
Will we forget before we get equality?