How Minneapolis Is Reacting To A Guilty Verdict
Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty of murdering George Floyd. Chauvin kneeled on Floyd’s neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds – over 8 minutes of which was caught on camera. The murder was a catalyst for uprisings and reckonings throughout the country last summer.
Producer Arfie Ghedi is from Minneapolis and wrote about the uprising for 1A last summer.
This community has shown up for each other in ways I’ve never seen before. Between neighborhood safety patrols and fire services and an entire hotel dedicated to housing homeless people during riots— wherever public services failed, majority brown and Black neighborhoods provided for themselves. It all happened during a pandemic disproportionately affecting people of color.
I’ve gotten many messages from friends and family concerned over the violence they’ve seen coming from my city. I was worried, too. I was scared for my friends and for the immigrant-owned businesses on Lake Street. I was scared of what a National Guard presence in my city could mean for my very Black family. But that fear quickly turned into pride.
There’s another emotion there too. It’s that familiar, gnawing sadness that pops up when I remember that video of George Floyd’s death or of Philando Castile’s, or Jamar Clark’s, or when I think of Breonna Taylor, whose birthday just passed. It’s remembering that many, many Black people had to die for this moment. And it’s hoping that no one else has to.
How are people reacting to the verdict? And what does this mean for Minneapolis, Minnesota and for the U.S.?
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