Roommates, as expected, our forever President Barack Obama came through with his thoughts regarding the heart-breaking murder of George Floyd—and it was just what we needed to feel that sense of calm and reassurance he’s known for. Posting on Twitter, Obama wrote out a lengthy statement about how he’s been feeling since George Floyd’s murder and the subsequent events surrounding it.
Many of us have been attempting to find the right words to express our feelings about the senseless murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin—who has since been arrested and charged with third-degree murder. Barack Obama released his highly-awaited statement on the matter and his words were filled the emotion.
Obama’s message read:
“I want to share parts of the conversations I’ve had with friends over the past couple of days about the footage of George Floyd dying face down on the street under the knee of a police officer in Minnesota.
The first is an email from an African American businessman:
‘Dude I gotta tell you the George Floyd incident in Minnesota hurt. I cried when I saw that video. It broke me down. The ‘knee on the neck’ is a metaphor for how the system so cavalierly holds black folks down, ignoring the cries for help. People don’t care. Truly tragic.’
Another friend of mine used the powerful song that went viral from 12-year-old Keedron Bryant to describe the frustrations he was feeling.
The circumstances of my friend and Keedron may be different, but their anguish is the same. It’s shared by me and millions of others.
It’s natural to wish for life “to just get back to normal” as a pandemic and economic crisis upend everything around us. But we have to remember that for millions of Americans, being treated differently on account of race is tragically, painfully, maddeningly “normal” — whether it’s while dealing with the health care system, or interacting with the criminal justice system, or jogging down the street, or just watching birds in a park.
This shouldn’t be “normal” in 2020 America. It can’t be “normal.” If we want our children to grow up in a nation that lives up to its highest ideals, we can and must be better.
It will fall mainly on the officials of Minnesota to ensure that the circumstances surrounding George Floyd’s death are investigated thoroughly and that justice is ultimately done. But it falls on all of us, regardless of our race or station — including the majority of men and women in law enforcement who take pride in doing their tough job the right way, every day — to work together to create a “new normal” in which the legacy of bigotry and unequal treatment no longer infects our institutions or our hearts.”
As we previously reported, Derek Chauvin was finally arrested for third-degree murder after video showed him choking George Floyd to death by putting a fatal knee to his neck, despite his cries that he couldn’t breathe.
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