This was accountability.
This was not Justice.
Justice would be George Floyd still being alive today to hug and hold is daughter. While the conviction of Derek Chauvin was a step in the right direction, the systems that allowed this tragedy to happen still require our attention.
ChangeLawyers acknowledges and honors the life of George Floyd
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Remember Him George Floyd was also a father
An image of George Floyd and his daughter Gianna has been circulating around social media since yesterday. George is sitting in the driver’s seat of a car, wearing a black T-shirt and black baseball cap with the word houston emblazoned in cursive letters above the brim.
In the passenger seat is Gianna, who is now 7 years old, but in the photo—taken a few years ago—looks as if she isn’t more than 3 or 4. She is wearing a purple-and-pink shirt and matching pants and a small plastic bracelet on her right wrist, and has several silver and pink bobbles tied into her hair. Her right hand is holding a pair of plastic blue-and-black sunglasses—the sort made for children with the expectation that they will not last very long—and she looks as if she has pulled the large glasses down from her face and to her chin specifically for the picture.
I find the photo compelling for a couple of reasons. George and his daughter share a striking resemblance. The image has captured them in a moment of uncanny synchrony—bodies facing forward, heads turned toward the camera to their left, each of their mouths slightly ajar. The photo also draws you in to both pairs of eyes. Eyes that are still, direct, calm, and so clearly built from the same blocks of DNA.
The photo is striking, too, because Gianna here reminds me so much of my own daughter. My daughter is 2 years old and has worn those same sorts of sunglasses around our house. I’m pretty sure that we have several scattered under couches, behind teddy bears, and at the bottom of our toy chest. They are the kind of toddler accessory that begs you to take a photo because the sunglasses are half the size of the child’s small face. My daughter wears her hair the same way, with ties that have colorful balls so that when she runs toward the slide at the park, they rattle against one another and create a chorus of tiny cackles. My sister wore her hair the same way as a child, the way my cousins did, the way my nieces do, the way little Black girls we meet at the park also do. “My hair!” my daughter will say, pointing toward another child with the same style, and then touching the top of her head as if to make sure that someone had not in fact taken her hair and put it on someone else’s head.
Read the story on The Atlantic
Speaking Of… How Black parents are talking to their kids about the Derek Chauvin conviction
“I do not understand why there is a trial,” my 13-year-old son said to me last week. “There is a nine-minute video.”
He was talking, of course, about the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd, which resulted in Mr. Chauvin being found guilty on all three counts brought against him, including second-degree murder. There were all kinds of legal questions to be adjudicated about different charges and sentences. But in the binary world of guilt and innocence in the minds of the young, the answer was plain enough.
I lacked good answers for my son, especially in a moment when Mr. Chauvin’s trial was not the only reminder of our country’s deep racial injustice: The deaths of Daunte Wright in Brooklyn Center, Minn., and Adam Toledo, a 13-year-old, in Chicago, have been added to an ever-expanding list of tragedies that have occurred when people of color encounter the police.
The United States demands too much wisdom from Black parents. We must walk that fine line between telling the truth about how cruel America can be toward Black bodies and souls and the hope that our children can be their free Black selves. America requires too much of its clerics, who must minister, console, lead and organize a people weary of Black death. Millions of African-Americans have to educate, cook, clean, practice law and govern while processing a series of traumas. The irony of Mike Elliott, the first Black mayor of Brooklyn Center, being called upon to explain what went wrong during Mr. Wright’s arrest is not lost on any of us. The mayor is among the traumatized.
Read the story on NY Times
More of This The 17 year old who hit record, and changed the world
Her motivations were simple enough. You could even call them pure.
“It wasn’t right,” said Darnella Frazier, who was 17 last year when she saw George Floyd pinned under a Minneapolis police officer’s knee. She said that to the jury last month as she testified in the murder trial of that former officer, Derek Chauvin.
No, Darnella, it wasn’t right, a Hennepin County jury agreed on Tuesday, finding Chauvin guilty of second- and third-degree murder as well as second-degree manslaughter.
After so many previous instances in which police officers were acquitted of what looked to many people like murder, this time was different. And it was different, in some significant portion, because of a teenager’s sense of right and wrong.
Call it a moral core.
On May 25, while taking her younger cousin on a stroll to get a snack, the high school student observed a struggle between a Black man and White police officer. After ushering the child into the convenience store, Cup Foods, Frazier stayed on the sidewalk and started recording.
Read the story on Washington Post
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