Like millions of Americans, I am angered and deeply distraught over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, and the pattern of repeated deaths of black Americans at the hands of police officers throughout our country. As a white person, I will never know the fear and trepidation of black and brown Americans when dealing with our law enforcement system. But I feel the outrage, and I must speak up and demand change to the culture that feeds this terrible moment.
The murder of Mr. Floyd must be prosecuted, swiftly, and charges must be laid against everyone involved in his death. Each day that waits for our system of justice to work is an invitation to greater anger and frustration. I truly believe in our system of laws, but they must work with the urgency that George Floyd’s life deserves and demands. To date, that has been missing.
Destruction and violence is not the path to change. I can never condone it. But protest and outcry are right and righteous. For the many police officers outraged by the conduct in this case, we respect and honor the work you do. But together, we must change the way our system has worked. We must join together for a more just America working with intention, urgency, good faith and a willingness to confront the stain of racism that has for too long plagued our land. I am committed to that. I urge you to join me in this effort, and I will keep you apprised of opportunities to express your support for this movement for justice.
Shelley B. Mayer