While the whole world is struck by the health crisis caused by the COVID-19 virus, in the United States there is another virus that has been going on for some time, without anybody finding the means to eradicate it. It is called RACISM. It has existed in all its forms in that country since slavery. But lately, we have been talking more about one form of racism, which is institutional racism, precisely in the context of police violence perpetrated against black people.
What is institutional racism? It is the complicity of the silence maintained by institutions. For example, when a white police officer wrongfully kills an unarmed black man and is found not guilty following the trial, this can be considered as institutional racism.
When a black man’s sentence is three times longer than a white man on trial for the same crime, this is akin to institutional racism.
In the United States there is undeniably an abuse of power by white police officers with black people. They pass off their racist practices as legitimate in the performance of their duties, but in reality they take malicious pleasure in torturing, asphyxiating and killing black people. And they continue to do so because they have the support of their superiors and they can always count on the judicial system to avoid being charged.
Still in 2020, being black is a huge risk! A risk of being falsely accused, of being lynched and humiliated, of being killed.
He was suspected of using a counterfeit $20 bill, he was arrested on the street, He didn't even resist the police. But, still, he was pinned down. A white police officer held his knee on his neck for almost 8 minutes and 46 seconds, including 2 minutes and 53 seconds after he lost consciousness. Throughout this violent arrest, he complained that he could not breathe, he begged the police officer in vain.
"I can't breathe, please" were his last words. His name was George Floyd, He died on May 25th, 2020, at the age of 46, in the city of Minneapolis, Minnesota.
What appalls me, is that this shocking scene took place in the middle of the street! So there were passers-by who were eyewitnesses, including one who filmed the whole scene. They begged the police officers with all their might to release George Floyd. Unfortunately, the drama unfolded before their helpless eyes.
Even knowing that he was being filmed, this policeman showed a disconcerting coldness. As if he didn't give a damn about the life of this black man.
"Beyond the weight of his knee choking George Floyd, I see the weight of white supremacy weighing in the balance". ~MrsKiss Kay
These policemen have such a deep contempt for the black man that they say to themselves that black people only get what they deserve, and all in all, they don't even deserve to live. They can kill them and they will get away with it because the system protects them.
"Racism isn't getting worse, it's just being filmed". ~Will Smith.
Here we are, 55 years after the first African-American civil rights marches. Martin Luther King must be rolling over in his grave. This dream he had is far from being fulfilled, we are witnessing a nightmare.
George Floyd is far from being the only victim, and unfortunately far from being the last.
On July 17th, 2014, Eric Garner also could not breathe, when during an arrest, the police officer grabbed him by the neck and dropped him to the ground. He then lost consciousness and died.
On February 23rd, 2020, Ahmaud Arbery drew his last breath only at the age of 25. While he was peacefully jogging, he was stalked by a father and son who shot him savagely.
Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, etc. The list is so long that it's scary!
That's why We have to put a STOP to it!
We put a STOP to this barbarism towards black people.
We put a STOP to this Police abuse of Power against black victims.
We put a STOP to the judicial system that judges acts according to skin color.
We put a STOP to white supremacy in all institutions.
We're getting to a point where citizens have to play the cops with the cops. Their arrest measures are clearly inadequate. These measures must be banned as soon as possible. These police officers who always use them in secret must be severely punished.
"99% of the murders committed by the police from 2013 to 2019 have not resulted in an officer being charged". Source mappingpoliceviolence.org
Can you believe it? So many black people have been killed and crimes were left unpunished. How long are we going to tolerate this? Why do we have to endure this staggering racism, even in 2020?
Justice must be served! Black lives do Matter!
And I think it's high time that everyone, of all races, stands up and speaks out against police misconduct against black people and the fallacious system that gives them reasons to do so.
It's high time the white community got involved in the fight as well, rather than just standing up in indignation without lifting a finger. It is understandable that this is a delicate subject that goes beyond many of you, but what is unacceptable is to remain passive and deny the obvious, by saying that "black people love to victimize themselves".
You have to ask yourself the right questions and choose the best side, which is that of humanism.
You have to stop disengaging yourself from this cause under the pretext that you don't know what to do or how to make yourself useful. Everyone can do something at their own level, starting with education. The white community should educate their children in acceptance of others and respect for differences. We are all equal regardless of skin colour.
Many of the children who have become police officers today, may have been raised to reject black skin, their environment may have led them to believe that they are superior to black people and that they should dissociate themselves from them.
That does not in any way justify their actions, under no circumstances will we find mitigating circumstances for them!
White people need to change their perception of the black community. For some, black people are drug dealers, drug addicts, hostile, dangerous, disrespectful, unambitious people, etc. Some of young Black boys have grown up in hostile environments, but that does not make them people to be feared. The environment in which a person grew up should not define them, regardless of the colour of their skin.
Black people have developed a thick skin as a result of all the injustice, suffering and humiliation they have been through, but that does not make them reprehensible people who should be marginalized.
White people should also stop taking advantage of this situation, which is sowing chaos in the black community, by brandishing their "White Privilege" card as a means of repression. The white community should also stop falsely accusing black people.
There is quite a lot that can be done in the white community to bring about real change. So to say at this point in time, that we don't know how to help, is simply burying your heads and condoning these abuses.
"There comes a time when silence is betrayal".~Martin Luther King
Get to know the Black community and speak out against Racism. Let’s learn to live together and love our neighbours regardless of their skin colour. Let's learn to be humane with each other. We are all human beings and we all have the same blood in our veins, so let's all fight together, not for the survival of the black or white race...but for the survival of the human race.