On Monday, four Minneapolis police officers responded to a call of an African-American man, now known as George Floyd, having tried to use a counterfeit bill at a local Cup Foods. Once the officers found a man who fit the description given of the suspect, they proceeded to arrest him in what is perhaps the worst way: pinning Floyd to the ground and one officer pressing his knee on the back of his neck.
Now, one would think: “Did Floyd do something to warrant him being pressed against the ground?” And yes, he did… he fell.
There are a number of videos on the fatal arrest but a relatively recent video showed that Floyd was being taken to a police car, and then he fell. The video I saw was part of a segment on CBS News (take that for what it’s worth), so it cut from Floyd falling to the video of the fatal arrest as it was happening, with Floyd telling the officer that he “can’t breathe” and that his “stomach hurts, my neck hurts, everything hurts,” however, there was absolutely nothing about the situation or the call that warranted such a response from the officers, particularly as THREE of them were pinning him down in the new video.
The call, like I said, was about a man using a counterfeit bill at Cup Foods. At best, that’s an honest mistake and at worst it was trying to scam the store. Neither of which are crimes punishable by death and neither of which warranted the sort of treatment the officers gave to Floyd. Pinning a suspect on the ground and putting your knee on them is naturally bound to cause damage, be it in terms of asphyxiating the suspect or damaging/breaking their neck, etc.
Now, I’m not a cop and I don’t know if that is standard procedure for Minneapolis cops (if it is, it really shouldn’t be), but allow me to share this link of a video of Florida police arresting the Parkland shooter who killed 17 people, including 14 kids. The monster that carried out that heinous act of violence got better treatment from the Florida police than George Floyd got from the Minneapolis police officers for allegedly using a counterfeit bill to buy food (and he might not even have been the right guy. He just matched the suspect’s description).
Of course, I’m not saying that the Florida police should have been brutal with the Parkland shooter, but I am saying that it’s absolutely asinine and outright insane that a school shooter was treated better during his arrest than a guy who matched a suspect’s description for the crime of using a counterfeit bill.
What happened last Monday to George Floyd was nothing short of manslaughter at best. There was no real reason for Floyd to have been treated like he was and people’s outrage over the incident is 100% justified. People protesting his death is 100% justified. The officers that were involved, particularly the officer who had his knee on Floyd’s neck, need to pay the price. Thankfully, it seems that four officers involved in the death of Floyd were fired, but of course, that doesn’t go far enough.
I don’t know what charges ought to be brought to the other three officers, but the officer who had his knee on Floyd’s neck needs to be charged with involuntary manslaughter at the very LEAST.
There is no real defense that I can find for the officers acting in the manner in which they did for the call which they responded to. There were far better ways to arrest Floyd. For crying out loud, Floyd wasn’t even resisting his arrest! Again, all he seemingly did was fall on the ground. The response to this call was not at all warranted.
So like I said, people are right to be outraged, angry, sad and people are perfectly justified in protesting against this tragedy. This tragedy showed that there are bad cops out there, not that we didn’t know before, of course. The bad cops make the good ones look bad and it drives people, particularly Leftists, to accuse virtually all police of being bad. A distinction must be made between the good and bad cops. We must defend the good cops while justifiably lambasting the bad ones and levying punishments for their bad behavior.
What people are not justified to do, however, is turning this tragedy into an opportunity to commit crimes. There have been multiple reports about fires in various places from a police station to a construction site to an auto shop to a Wendy’s and a McDonald’s. Multiple lootings have been reported from a Target to other retail stores to a US Bank, and there have been many reports of vandalism and outright destruction of property from destroying the aforementioned Target to destroying the windows of a local charter school, etc.
Many businesses, particularly the small businesses, had already been hurt because of our response to the Chinese coronavirus in shutting down our economies. This doesn’t help them and most importantly, it doesn’t honor Floyd in the least.
Protesting his death honors him. Rioting, setting things on fire, looting stores and destroying private property dishonors the guy. If anything, it hurts the cause. It brings the attention off of the police and onto the rioters, looters, arsonists, etc. It turned what was supposed to be a national conversation about police brutality into a conversation about how people went absolutely nuts and took the opportunity to do things they otherwise would not. People took the opportunity to loot stores because they would be arrested far more easily otherwise. People took the opportunity to set ablaze places that had NOTHING to do with Floyd’s unjust death. That doesn’t get people to think about the consequences of police brutality – it gets people to think bad people will always seek any excuse to be bad and seek any opportunity to do bad things, even seeing the tragic death of a man as an opportunity to do evil.
It definitely doesn’t help that idiots like Cardi B, Ice Cube and Ilhan Omar have incited this kind of violence and have even excused it. NO ONE is justified in rioting, looting, committing arson, etc. The tragedy that is George Floyd’s death does not justify this sort of behavior. It justifies protesting against police brutality, as tons of people were doing before the rioting began. It justifies being outraged over injustice. It does not justify further injustice, however.
I hope the officers get the punishment they deserve and I hope that they turn to Christ, that they might beg for forgiveness both for the actions that they undertook and their overall sins. I hope that all police officers recognize that their most important duty is to protect the people and not exaggerate in their response to mild calls. I get that such calls can escalate to worse things, but there was no indication that there was any escalation happening or bound to happen with Floyd’s arrest.
I also hope people realize that rioting, looting and setting ablaze random businesses does nothing to teach people about police brutality and does nothing to make things better. Also, no, the looting of stores in Minneapolis is not the same as the Boston Tea Party, as some on Twitter have suggested. The revolutionaries didn’t set random businesses ablaze to “own” the British Parliament. They didn’t loot random shops to “stick it” to King George. They didn’t vandalize random businesses because they knew doing such a thing would be monumentally stupid and would accomplish nothing positive, and certainly wouldn’t get their point across.
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