Another unarmed black man, father, brother, and son, has been subjected to the wrath of systemic racism and violence within the American system. George Floyd is his name, and millions of us have taken to the streets and social media to voice our outrage following his death. On May 25, 2020, Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis Police Officer after being accused of handling a counterfeit $20 bill.
Details on the story are still hazy and many individuals are skeptical of why things escalated the way they did, but from the video footage recorded by a bystander, it is clear that this man was murdered. In no way was he resisting arrest or failing to comply with the police's demands, yet he was still constrained and pinned to the ground with a knee pushing down on his neck. Why?
Witnessing the video footage has brought up many emotions from black individuals and allies worldwide, all of whom are simply fed up. We as black people are tired of being victimized and unjustly treated by a country that does not see the value in our lives. This country loves to pride themselves on being "a melting pot of cultures" and a "land of the free", yet when it comes to a community coming together and simply asking for justice and equal rights, they act otherwise.
George Floyd's death changed the pace of the black lives matter movement, in that it (woke us up). We are beginning to see the corrupt nature of our government, as well as the countless black lives that have been lost due to this unjust system.
As a community, we have started educating ourselves and our allies on the plights and fights of our people, by signing petitions, sharing stories on platforms such as Twitter, peacefully protesting, and even reading articles and books on race and coexistence. We, like never before, are finally waking up and realizing that America, which was founded on racism and supremacy, will not cater to our longevity and strife for justice, unless we counterintuitively force them to do so.
The government is trying to control the way information is perceived to warp reality and place us in a state of limbo and confusion. Alongside trying to pit us against the country, the government is also trying to pit us against our own. On Twitter, many Black LGBTQ+ individuals, and Black Feminists have voiced their outrage with the Black Lives Matter Movement, stating that the black community sheds a blind eye towards black victims who are women and/or LGBTQ+.
Breonna Taylor. Aiyanna Jones. Tony McDade. These are all names that shouldn't go unnoticed. Regardless of their sexual identity and gender, these victims are equally important as they all shared one common attribute: They were black individuals living in a racially-polarized world.
We as a group must break away from dividing ourselves and stay unified. We can not possibly fight these social battles and injustices if we are constantly bridging a divide within our own community. It is important that we steer clear from ignorance, further educate ourselves, and use our voices and platforms to pledge for our people and our rights. I know that in three weeks time, people are going to start reverting back to their normal ways, but we cannot divert our attention away from our cause.
The government and the media will try and incite us and make us forget about what we stand for, but we need to stay vigilant and aware.
We must do anything that we can to support black lives and bring awareness to this corrupt system before we fall a victim to its corruption and become that next "Justice for"-hashtag.
For more information on ways to support the movement, please visit this website:
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