Last week, the Minneapolis police officer that murdered George Floyd was found guilty on all three charges: second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
This verdict is welcome news to the millions of Americans who protested for justice. On the left, there will be conversation and debate on whether we can celebrate the incarceration of another human, and these conversations are worth having. As we work to abolish prisons and policing we will also continue to fight state-sanctioned violence by the hands of law enforcement officers.
As people decompress and process this verdict, consider these truths:
- This is an incredibly rare verdict. Since 2015, 1,000 people have been fatally shot by police annually. In that time, less than 5 law enforcement officers were convicted of murder… That’s a .001% conviction rate.
- George Floyd was murdered in May 2020. A family lost their brother, a daughter lost her father – and for that, there will never be justice. And for millions of other Black Americans, this society continues to withhold justice of any kind (criminal, economic, environmental etc).
- This isn’t a turning point for the police state; this conviction is a bargaining chip from the ruling class to quell the Black Lives Matter movement and to keep the working class from losing faith in the system. After experiencing the largest protests in US history, the ruling class is willing to sacrifice one cop to maintain the legitimacy of the state.
“Never, ever lose your sense of outrage”– Senator Bernie Sanders
We will continue to call for police accountability and abolition both nationally and locally. SPD has and continues to kill people – say their names:
Charleena Lyles and her unborn child, Renne Davis and her unborn child, Jacqueline Salyers, John T Williams, Giovonn McDade, EJ Strictland, Bennie Branch, Che Taylor, Jesse Sarey, Shaun Fuhr, Kenny Dion, Victor Duffey Jr., Malik Williams, Joquin, Michael Ealy, Edward Anderson, Leonard Thomas, Manuel Ellis, Mi’Chance Dunlap-Gittens