Washington, DC – George Floyd. We say his name. And we are relieved that yesterday, jurors in Minneapolis recognized what the entire world witnessed in nine and a half minutes of horrifying video; that George Floyd was murdered by a white police officer. It is bitter-sweet and little consolation to the untold number of people who have suffered under police violence in this country.
Yesterday’s conviction is a small but powerful signal of change. Our political and legal systems were built to advance white Americans’ interests at the expense of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC). For centuries, Black people have been denied justice in the face of white violence and brutality, including state-sanctioned violence.
This outcome, while historic, was also no accident. Black Lives Matter advocates and their allies have demanded change and forced Americans to reckon with white supremacy and systematic racism.
As a white-led legal advocacy organization, we are in debt to the advocates who have made us explore our own biases and reconsider our commitment to equity and justice. But there is still much work to do.
We know NHeLP has a role to play in the fight for racial justice, but affirm that we will listen and make space for the communities and advocates most impacted by systemic inequities.
We must all work to end police brutality while remembering that it is just one source of white supremacist violence that plagues this country. We must agitate for social, political, economic, and legal change. And we must support the people working at the community level to stop police violence.