Yesterday evening in Minneapolis, a black man named George Floyd was murdered by the police. A white police officer knelt on Floyd’s neck until Floyd fell unconscious. Floyd died in the hospital.
Protesters in Minneapolis today are being maced.
I am angry.
Black people are already dying at a disproportionate rate due to COVID-19. They have been murdered by police officers sworn to protect them for as long as the police have existed.
When anti-lockdown protesters instigate violence, there is hardly any response from the police.
Please, do not call the police. It can be confusing and frightening to not know who to turn to, but that is exactly why building communities is so important.
In almost every single situation, bringing in the police leads to escalation and if there are black people involved, it increases the risk of murder at the hands of the state.
Get to know your neighbors. Find resources within your community to handle the different situations that might arise. In parts of Oakland, there are neighborhood consultants who receive training as first-responders. They walk the neighborhood regularly talking to people and businesses, letting people know that they are present, acting as guides and counselors.
They are not armed. They come from within the community.
If you are unable to find a certain resource, start thinking of ways to create it. Petition local governance to direct money away from the militarization of police and towards providing community health and education.
Do not call the police.
I don’t have all the answers. There are no easy answers. But if the police hadn’t been called to follow up on a possibly counterfeit twenty dollar bill, then George Floyd might still be alive today.
I am sending love.
Black lives matter.