I would not call Tuesday’s verdict “justice”, because justice implies true restoration; but it is “accountability”, which is the first step towards justice.
“George Floyd mattered”. He was loved by his family and his friends, but that isn’t why he mattered. He mattered because he was a human being.
As President Joe Biden said on Tuesday, the conviction of former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin in the killing of George Floyd “can be a giant step forward” for the nation in the fight against systemic racism.
Biden spoke from the White House, hours after the verdict, alongside Vice President Kamala Harris, and the pair called for Congress to act swiftly to address policing reform.
“It’s not enough,” Biden said of the verdict. “We can’t stop here.”
Harris said, “A measure of justice isn’t the same as equal justice.”
Justice for George Floyd! The emotions many may be feeling right now are hard to describe.
Derek Chauvin has been found guilty. This is monumental. George’s death is not in vain.
The verdicts of the Derek Chauvin trial are indeed the right ones. Convicting him of all three charges marks a new dawn in the fight for racial justice.
On Tuesday, after jurors had convicted Derek Chauvin of murdering George Floyd, it brought a dramatic ending to a case that had transfixed the world and become the latest flashpoint in a raging debate about Police brutality against the black community.
This conviction, almost a year after a bystander’s video had captured Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes, is the first time in Minnesota history that a white Police officer has been convicted of killing a black civilian on the job.
The conviction triggered a wave of relief and reflection, not only across the United States, but in many countries around the world.
It was a murder committed in the full light of day, and it ripped the blinders off for the whole world to see the systemic racism.
The intersection of race and law enforcement has long been contentious in the United States, underscored by a series of deadly incidents involving white Police officers and black people in recent years.
George Floyd’s death prompted protests against racism and Police brutality in many U.S. cities, and in other countries last year, even as the world grappled with the coronavirus pandemic.
In his comments, President Biden emphasised his support for legislation “to root out unconstitutional policing”, including the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which has been passed by the U.S. House of Representatives and seeks to increase accountability for law enforcement misconduct.
This verdict reminds us to never give up the hope of enduring change. We don’t want any more community members dying at the hands of law enforcement. This has to end. We need true justice.
What we have witnessed on Tuesday is a social transformation that says no one is beneath the law, and no one is above the law.