Washington, DC—Following today’s verdict in the Derek Chauvin murder trial, People For the American Way President Ben Jealous released the following statement:
“From the moment the world first saw the searing images of George Floyd’s brutal murder, it was clear that no outcome other than a conviction of his killer would serve justice. This is a day of deep gratitude for the accountability that has come, for the masterful work of Keith Ellison and his team in ensuring justice in this case, and for the way in which the conscience of a nation was awakened by this tragedy. At the same time, it is still a day of grief for the man who will never return to his family and for so many Black Americans murdered and maimed by law enforcement. For centuries, American law enforcement has carried out these attacks with impunity; for decades, since the beating of Rodney King, even video evidence of those attacks has failed to bring accountability. That changed today, but this work doesn’t stop today.
“There must be a federal investigation of broader problems of police abuse that led to this case in Minneapolis, as well as continuing issues in nearby communities like Brooklyn Center and communities around the nation. We must pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act at the federal level, which will not solve every problem but is a good start. And we must do the hard work of fundamentally changing policing at the local level, which is happening across the country from the state level to the city and county level, where we are seeing some really innovative solutions proposed in places like Ithaca, New York. This work demands the full commitment of our hearts and souls to rooting out systemic racism in our justice system, so no family ever needs to grieve again as George Floyd’s family is grieving now. We can and will succeed in this work, and George Floyd’s death will not be in vain.”
About People For the American Way
People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and build a democratic society that implements the ideals of freedom, equality, opportunity and justice for all. We encourage civic participation, defend fundamental rights, and fight to dismantle systemic barriers to equitable opportunity. Learn more: https://www.pfaw.org.