With weakened nerves, and hearts beating fast, the entire world watched and listened as the words were spoken. Guilty! Guilty! Guilty!
As I heard the words, tears began to fall. For the life lost, and for the justice that was long overdue. The African American community carries the burden for our fallen brothers and sisters. We walk with fear not because we have done something bad, merely for the divine melanin within our skin. When will it end? When does the world decide to play fair? When will mothers, wives, sisters, daughters, sons, and friends stop burying their loved ones whose lives were taken because of ignorance? This victory feels monumental, however, the fight continues, and we push forward as there is much work to be done.
I made the decision not to watch the events of the trial unfold. The persecution of a man already persecuted at the hands of his fellow man who took a vow to serve and protect. It was a stark reminder I chose to avoid. Why put myself into a place of anger, bitterness, and confusion all over again is the question I continued to ask myself. The problem with this story, there was no protection, only hatred, and the tragic end of George Floyd's life. In what world is a man tried in a court of law after his death? This amazingly backwards world we all live in is where it all played out. Makes you shake your head in disbelief. If you don't see the problem then chances are you might be part of it. Facts are never easy to swallow, but in this case it is what it is!
Thinking back on the events of that day I can't help but wonder about the what ifs. What if he had stayed home that day? What if he wasn't claustrophobic? What if he had been silent the entire time? What if God could reverse those 8 minutes and 46 seconds? I only wonder these things because I wish he was still alive to be a father to his children, to mentor the youth, and to simply live his life. Why should anyone have to conform to a law that does not work in their favor?
To say his name is to remember the fight that continues, the work that is to be done, the legacy he leaves behind, the numerous black lives lost before and after him, and the movement that has been sparked because of his death. It is ok to be saddened, but let us all remember that joy will always come in the morning. George Floyd, we will ride for you, never forget you, and we will surely not allow your life to have been in vain. Rest easy brother.
AJ writes & blogs from her home in Atlanta, GA. You can also find her work as a contributing writer at www.groovmagazine.com
"This is how you do it; you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until it's done. It's that easy, and that hard." -Neil Gaiman