Feeling and Thoughts on the Murder of George Floyd

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From Judy Schultz, Resident of Summit Hill, St. Paul Neighborhood

 

I keep thinking about the bystanders who had to watch the murder of George Floyd, how they tried to intervene and were denied.  How are they living with this?  I can’t even go over and see the devastation of the shops and businesses in Minneapolis.  Looking at Target, Addis on University Avenue is all I can stand.  All the shops on Grand Avenue are shuttered with messages about the murder of George and countless number of other Black males and females. Helicopters are circling when the protestors are at the governor’s mansion. It is both comforting and troubling to see the National guard vehicles lined up on Grand. It is unnerving to see a guardsman with his rifle drawn looking at you.  I managed to say Thank You to him.  I applaud the young people for their passion to the cause.  Perhaps they will be able to do what our generation failed to do.  But then today when I saw a policeman in Buffalo push an elderly man down, I wonder.

 

From Harry Grigsby, Resident of Minneapolis Lake Street Neighborhood

 

Hundreds of millions of people witness via video tape, TV broadcast and/or many other social media outlets, you might as well say, eight and one half minutes of torture and then George Floyd taking his last breath, what a needless loss of life.

 

(How) can we as a people move forward in good conscience without some form of change. I hope that "one day this nation (will) live out the true meaning of its creed."

 

I firmly believe that no person with a good heart could watch the video of Mr. Floyd dying and not be heartbroken. I was. It was Mr. Floyd this time, nobody is immune to the possibility of that happening to themselves, a good friend or a loved one, (nobody). 

 

When I see a few people taking advantage of this tragedy by looting and setting fires it saddens my heart to no end. 

When I see the diversity that this tragedy has brought out in America, most of America, it warms my heart.

When I see people assembling or marching and protesting together in (good faith) it warms my heart.

When I see people of all walks of life and nationalities working together for a good cause it warms my heart. 

When I see how unified we are as a people it warms my heart. 

 

It gives me great hope that this is what America will be one day a (land of liberty and justice for all) and that George Floyd is somehow able to feel what America and other countries are doing in his name, and somehow knows in his spirit that he did not lose his life in vain.

 

From Cindy Barnes, Resident of White Bear Lake, Minnesota

My reactions to the video of George Floyd’s murder:
I felt like someone just punched me hard.  I think I was screaming at the TV to “move your knee”.  Then my next thought was back 50 plus years to Martin Luther King, Jr., the marches, his dream, and his death.  I remember how I grieved for him, wondering how the civil rights movement would continue.  Did we lose his Dream?  Have I ever done enough?  What could I do now?  Fifty years and here we are. This is what went through my mind.

 

From Cheryl Jones, Resident of Mabel Lake, Remer, Minnesota

On Memorial Day I watched TV as across the US, people played Taps on their trumpets and bugles from their homes due to COVID caused group meeting bans.  It was uplifting – making the best of a difficult situation. 

Later I watched on TV in stunned disbelief as George Floyd died with the knee of a Minneapolis police officer on his neck.  In the days that followed, neighborhoods where I lived and worked almost fifty years ago were vandalized, looted, burned and over-run by rioters; later replaced by mostly peaceful protesters. I remember racial protests in North Minneapolis in 1967 and of course the unrest nationwide of 1968.  We keep thinking we have solved the racial problems, only to have them resurface.  The death of George Floyd and the resulting protests have made it clear that once and for all the issues of racism and police brutality must be resolved. We cannot survive unless we achieve understanding and heal the wounds.

I don’t have the answers, but I do thank goodness for the leadership of Governor Walz in both the Covid-19 pandemic and the events surrounding George Floyd’s death.  The Governor demonstrated calm, deliberate leadership.  He stated the facts as he knew them and counted on other leaders for advice and information.  A startling contrast with our so-called leader in the White House who never took either situation seriously, spread lies and misinformation, created more confusion, division and mistrust than already existed and blamed everyone and everything else instead of leading by example.

 

 

From Russ Thornell, Resident of Forest Lake, Minnesota

I am a Veteran, and 48 year plus member of L.I.U.N.A. Local 563 in Minneapolis. I feel compelled to write about what took place on a street in Minneapolis. I mourn for George Floyd, and his family. George was a HUMAN BEING and a CITIZEN of the United States of America. His death was a disgusting, brutal, and uncalled for, act of violence perpetrated by the very people we, as citizens, with our tax dollars, hire to protect us all. Citizens, especially my age, have seen this type of brutality, by police, against people of color, play out way too often over the decades. We, as Citizens, need to come together, and put an END to this police culture of violence, once and for all. We live in a so-called democracy with laws to protect us all. It has become evident to me, over the years, that the police, all over our country, are in effect above the law. In a Democracy, no one IS, or SHOULD BE, above the LAW!!!

2019 BY THE MINNESOTA RETIREE COUNCIL, AFL-CIO   

651-227-7647

1-800-652-9004

175 Aurora Ave, St Paul, MN 55103

retirees@mnaflcio.org

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