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posted by martyb on Tuesday June 02 2020, @07:30PM   Printer-friendly

African-American George Floyd's death has led to marches, demonstrations, acts of violence, and looting across the USA and in other parts of the world. Emotions are running high. We will not attempt to accuse or defend anyone here. Just attempt to lay out the information we have and offer it up for the community to discuss. Many comments about this incident have been posted to unrelated stories on this site. This is, therefore, an attempt to provide one place on SoylentNews where people are encouraged to discuss it. So as to not derail other stories on the site, I kindly ask you focus those comments here.

Wikipedia has a page about this: (permanent link to the page as it appeared at the time of writing):

On May 25, 2020, George Floyd, an African-American man, was killed in the Powderhorn community of Minneapolis, Minnesota. While Floyd was handcuffed and lying face down on a city street during an arrest, Derek Chauvin, a white American Minneapolis police officer, kept his knee on the right side of Floyd's neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds; according to the criminal complaint against Chauvin, 2 minutes and 53 seconds of that time occurred after Floyd became unresponsive.[3][4][5][6][7] Officers Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng, and Thomas K. Lane participated in Floyd's arrest, with Kueng holding Floyd's back, Lane holding his legs, and Thao looking on and preventing intervention by an onlooker as he stood nearby.[8]:6:24[9][10]

The arrest was made after Floyd was accused of using a counterfeit $20 bill at a market.[11] Police said Floyd physically resisted arrest.[12][13] Some media organizations commented that a security camera from a nearby business did not show Floyd resisting.[14][15] The criminal complaint filed later said that based on body camera footage, Floyd repeatedly said he couldn't breathe while standing outside the police car, resisted getting in the car and intentionally fell down.[16][17][18][19] Several bystanders recorded the event on their smartphones, with one video showing Floyd repeating "Please", "I can't breathe", "Mama", and "Don't kill me" being widely circulated on social media platforms and broadcast by the media.[20] While knee-to-neck restraints are allowed in Minnesota under certain circumstances, Chauvin's usage of the technique has been widely criticized by law enforcement experts as excessive.[21][22][23] All four officers were fired the day after the incident.[24]

[...] Charges: Third-degree murder (Chauvin) Second-degree manslaughter (Chauvin)

This has been extensively covered by the media. Some outlets attempt to put their own interpretations on their coverage with their selection of video footage and with their commentary. It is difficult to find a simple video of the incident. Here is one that has coverage from the time of initial encounter of the police the officers with George Floyd up through his being taken away by ambulance. The video is a composite of shots from a restaurant's surveillance camera (Dragon Wok), Officer body cam, and bystander cell phones. YouTube footage: Full George Floyd Available Footage (21:12). If anyone has more complete footage of the arrest, please mention it clearly (with a link) in the comments.

Lastly, this is a hard time for everybody. Pandemic. Lock-down. Unemployment. Fears. Please be mindful of others' circumstances when commenting. We are a community sprung from a time of challenge. Let us continue to be here for one-another during this difficult time. SoylentNews is People.

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  • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:53AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:53AM (#1003056)

    You need to read the history of unions. You're absolutely incorrect, and everyone stating that protesting is protected, is a little full of shit.

    It's been forgotten through time, but there were peaceful protests for the 10-hour day (predated the 8-hour day movement). "Police", or law enforcement that also moonlighted for rich interests (Railroad Robbin' Barons), murdered women and children in the street to send a message. This is a fact in our history.

    The "Coal Police" were very much a real thing, and union members back then risked being "disappeared" by them if they became too effective.

    A large number of protests in this country have been about working conditions and the middle class being treated like "human capital stock". Chicago police in particular are known for brutal moonlighting. Read up on this history, because in many cases it was paid agitators or police in disguise that started the violence in the first place. Either that, or it was the police that started shooting.

    The NLRB itself was created to take the teeth out of protesting, legally. In exchange for mandatory participation by the owners/managers, many forms of protest were made illegal. Talk to the unions in San Fransisco about the police getting into it with dock workers protesting.

    In the last week, there has been evidence of police starting the violence. So the real truth of is that not all riots were purely caused by the rioters, especially when it's a "riot" that developed from a protest situation and not the wrong sports team winning with football hooligans tearing up the place.

    Peaceful protestors, and the press covering them, are routinely abused by law enforcement. Put on buses without bathrooms, locked in handcuffs for 18 hours, not fed. You know, being mistreated and deeply abused by hate filled officers. I say hate filled, because I don't know how decent humans treat other humans like that. Perhaps there are popular behavioral experiments that could explain police behavior? Just perhaps.

    No, the "police" have always been against us. They have always ostensibly served at our pleasure, but the truth is, they're just paid enforcers and murderers for the 1 percent. It has ALWAYS been the police against protestors, which is just another way of saying that has always been police against the working man and unions. The police are the buffer between the poor, the middle class, and the upper classes.

    Only difference here for black people specifically is perhaps the playing field and conditions. War on drugs instead of a factory, material deprivation, programs targeted against minorities. Black people have poor working conditions, wage theft, and all the standard union refrains, IN ADDITION TO, the systemic racism they must deal with. Unfortunately, as MLK said, the riot is the language of the unheard. Black protestors have been pushed into a corner for a long damn time, and it's too easy to demonize and deflect because of a small percentage of looters and criminal opportunists. Not to mention many interests on the ground with their own agendas trying to take advantage of the situation

    Your point about white people being the majority abused by police is somewhat correct, and it's not reported enough, but it also doesn't matter. It is happening to black people many times more than it is happening to white people, and it is not commensurate with the percentage of the whole. What's worse, is that white people seem to not want to believe this. Even with video, it seems that the only cases that matter are when the victim is black. I don't find that a coincidence, but a concerted effort to continue to divide us.

    That's because one of the best men this country has ever seen, tirelessly worked on behalf of the unions and the workers, because he knew the SECRET. Before the Civil War started, this man would speak at union gatherings and conventions about how the "negro must be embraced as our brother, and brought into the unions". If white and black people ever came together? If they became organized and unified in a union of brothers and sisters seeking common goals?

    The power in this country would shit themselves in abject fucking terror. Black people have to deal with a lot more shit, and for a long damn time. It's about time the dam burst, and I can only hope that a critical mass of multi-ethnic multi-racial people will organize to tear the whole system down.

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  • (Score: 2) by Phoenix666 on Friday June 05 2020, @01:46PM

    by Phoenix666 (552) on Friday June 05 2020, @01:46PM (#1003721) Journal

    When riots break out, what do you want to happen? Do you want them to destroy the stores you need? Do you want them to burn your home to the ground, drag you and your family out and beat you to death on your front lawn? You want the police and national guard to stand down then?

    Well, I'll tell you what you get if you do that: real civil war. If the government abdicates its responsibility to maintain law and order, citizens will do it themselves. They will make mistakes, because they are not trained for chaotic situations. Innocent people will die. That will stoke more anger, and pretty soon the streets run with blood. How well do you think that works out for people who are 13% of the population as they start a race war against the people who are 73% of the population?

    There comes a point at which there's no turning back from that eventuality. We've been heading toward that point for 30 years, and are very close now.

    Washington DC delenda est.