June 3, 2020 by Cláudia
The video of the brutal murder of George Floyd seems to have ignited an unprecedented general outrage, not only in the USA but worldwide. While police brutality (and impunity) is not new, the video of a cold, indifferent policeman kneeling on an unarmed man’s neck, who called out for his mother and pleaded for his life, while two others held him down has shed light on something black people have been saying all along: racist violence is ongoing and structural, authorities are not afraid of consequences and innocent people are dying because of it.
I understand that this has always been an issue. I understand that only the more privileged (like me) were shocked by this video. I understand that it has been here all along and that, being only a peripheral concern in my life, I was/am part of the problem. I understand. And I’m sorry. I’m sorry I woke up too late.
I mourn all the lives that have been lost (most of them I didn’t even know about before). But this tragedy seems to have ignited a fire that I haven’t seen before. I can’t remember a time in which racism was so prominent in media coverage. I can’t remember protests of this dimension. I see people coming together, looking out for each other, demanding immediate action. Justice.
I’m a bit more hopeful. This kind of strength in protest, which has been extremely powerful and emotional, has to be the start of something big. Of societal change.
I am hopeful that this will be a turning point.
This was certainly a turning point for me. Racial injustice and violence will no longer be a peripheral concern in my life anymore. This is my commitment to make anti-racism an integral part of my life both online and offline.
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I don’t want to take more space. Please take a look at the following resources, they are all extremely important and eye-opening.
- Don’t understand the protests? What you’re seeing is people pushed to the edge by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
- To anyone criticizing looters and protestors in Minneapolis when all the focus should be on the police brutality that led us here., by Frederick Joseph.
- Towards the “Other America”: Anti-Racist Resources for White People Taking Action for Black Lives Matter, by Chris Crass.
- ‘Can You Hear Us Now?’ A Discussion on Race with Trymaine Lee
Let me know what you think. Do you think that this will be a turning point for the anti-racism movement?