After three weeks, Derek Chauvin’s criminal trial ended last Tuesday. Tears rolled down the faces of the crowds gathered in the Twin Cities. There was jubilation in the streets, a huge sigh of relief. They sang Justice.
The jury’s deliberation was not long, leaving some that may not have been enough time. Thinking of even the worst is a perfect illustration of how rotten our system is. We expect so little because the police liability is slim to none.
From the announcement, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi released a statement saying, âThank you, George Floyd, for sacrificing your life for justice. For being there to call your mother. “
She continued her statement by saying, “Because of you and because of the thousands, millions of people around the world who have spoken out for justice, your name will always be synonymous with justice.”
Pelosi immediately received negative reactions for his remarks. George Floyd did not die for a cause. He was neither a martyr nor a pawn in the dismantling of white supremacy. He was a victim of it.
The ends do not justify the means. A sigh of relief doesn’t compare to numbness and contempt for a system that will strike again. This verdict was the bare minimum that a system could do for George Floyd’s family.
A glimmer of hope consumed by systematic madness.
The police system is rooted in white supremacy.
The history of policing in American society is inherently racist. The problem is not to differentiate the good cops from “a few bad apples”. It’s about recognizing a system that was created to target black and brown communities.
During slavery, the role of law enforcement existed in the roles of very important slaves in the South. After the passage of the 13th Amendment came the rise of Jim Crow, a codified system of racial apartheid. Today’s modern police are cunning but still brutal.
According to a Washington post database, nearly 1,000 people are shot dead by police each year.
In 2021 so far, 335 people died due to police violence.
Last year the nation was rocked by black people.trauma pornWhich sparked outrage and protests.
The streets were filled to the brim as bodies marched in solidarity for black lives, chanting “no justice, no peace”.
Following the Chauvin verdict, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison said, âI wouldn’t call today’s verdict justice, however, because justice involves real restoration. But it is responsibility, which is the first step towards justice. “
Of all the murders committed by the police between 2013 and 2020, 98.3 percent officers are not charged with a crime.
Derek Chauvin is the first white officer in the Minnesotan story to be convicted of murdering a black man.
Responsibility does not equate to justice.
The stages of reform cannot be simplified by one thing. But to see a change, we must end a legal doctrine called “Qualified immunity”.
Qualified immunity is the rule that protects government employees from civil lawsuits that charge them with violating a complainant’s constitutional rights unless the violation is “clearly established.”
How do you know if an action warrants qualified immunity? Appeals courts use a two-part system to determine whether excessive force immunity should be granted.
- First, the courts must consider whether the police used excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment. Otherwise, qualified immunity is granted immediately.
- The second step requires the courts to determine whether a cop should have known that their actions were illegal. If so, the case is decided.
In 2020, Reuters published a special report examination of 252 cases from 2015 to 2019 in which complainants wanted to abolish qualified immunity.
More than half of the cases in this report were granted immunity for excessive police force. Since 2005, courts “have increasingly tended to grant immunity in cases of excessive force”, and the numbers keep increasing.
As the nation waited for a verdict, another shootout took place.
Minutes before the verdict was announced, police were called to investigate a disorder in Columbus, Ohio.
Responding to an altercation involving a knife and two other girls, Ma’Khia Bryant was shot and killed by police four times.
Taken to hospital in critical condition, Bryant died of his injuries. She was only 16 years old. She was a child.
Police released body camera footage that appeared to show Bryant’s attempt to stab another girl when she was fatally shot.
In one press conferenceMayor Andrew Ginther said that “the officer has taken steps to protect another young girl in the community”.
But was lethal force necessary?
Police training includes an often misunderstood rule called “21 foot rule. The 21-foot rule states that an officer is in potential danger when they are within 21 feet of an armed person with a knife.
To be clear, this distance is not a green light to use lethal force. Rather, it is an informal rule aimed at establishing a âsafe zoneâ. Rather, however, it serves to deter de-escalation tactics. It creates a mentality that justifies unnecessary lethal force.
Four hits, let alone one, was too much. Ma’Khia Bryant should have been able to live to see another day.
What about de-escalation training?
In high-risk scenarios, the police come under the assumption that they are able to defuse a situation without undue force. But you can’t count on training alone to bring about police reform and behavior change.
The sight of a potential weapon often elicits a frightening and forceful reaction from the reactionary and guarded police officers.
Whether a weapon is identifiable or not, the primary intention of police intervention is supposed to be the preservation of life.
Not all ridings see de-escalation training the same, and they do not have the same dedication as other use-of-force training.
In a survey carried out in 2015 by the Police Executives Research Forum, each recruit received only eight hours of de-escalation training. This includes crisis response, de-escalation, use of force policy and electronic control weapons. This compares to 58 hours spent on firearms training and 49 hours spent on defensive tactics.
In cases related to mental health, the role models and implicit biases may overshadow the help given to that person.
Across the country, those with serious mental illnesses are 16 times more likely being killed during an encounter with the police. The racial bias factor and risk of calling 911 during a crisis is considerably higher.
Unfortunately, legal policies in some states police interaction mandate before family members can bring loved ones for treatment.
In Georgia, a person must represent an “imminent threat” to themselves and to others before being involuntarily hospitalized. An issue that can result in excessive force with police interaction while delaying a loved one’s emergency for immediate treatment.
However, in places like Chicago, a pilot program has been proposed for police and mental health professionals to âco-respondâ to such incidents.
Nonetheless, mistrust will continue to permeate every interaction.
Ideally what is Justice?
Justice would be that George floyd, someone’s father, brother, loving partner would still be alive. That would be it Daunte Wright could eventually be 21 and be with her son. Justice is Breonna Taylor wake up the next morning. It is Adam toledo to be able to grow.
Tamir rice like so many other children deserved to be able to play with toy guns. Daniel Prude had an episode and needed help. Elijah mcclain was introverted and minded about his own business.
Justice is being able to walk the streets at any time of the day without fear. It’s being able to drive without worrying that a cop could kill you at a traffic stop. Justice is simply power breathe.
No warrant, offense or antecedent should incite force.
This fragment of “responsibility” does not diminish the lack of mercy and prevention of every injustice. The trauma and anger will not go away as parents still have to teach their children what to do when they encounter a police officer.
âJusticeâ is about taking funding from the police, making them accountable, and eliminating qualified immunity. It abolishes a racist system that has failed time and time again.
As long as there is no justice, there is no real peace.
Did you notice the necessary corrections? Please email us at [email protected]