Minneapolis man who knew George Floyd talks about his legacy
“Yesterday I saw people of faith from everywhere – gathered outside a Target and other stores. They were sweeping the streets. They were cleaning up. They were giving food to people. In the midst of evil, there is good. In the midst of evil, good is right there. It felt really good to see people come together. What can we do as a community? I will tell you this: it’s not easy. It’s not going to be easy, but it can be done. If we are willing, there is a will, we will rise up above this and be stronger than we were before.” ~Bishop Harding Smith
A city in anguish – Minneapolis in mourning.
The death of black men and women who have died due to police violence – like Philando Castile who, just three years ago died in front of the world as many watched a Facebook live video of him being shot by police – Once again Minneapolis finds itself in the headlines for yet another murder at the hands of police, this time the victim’s name is #George Floyd. Charges against the police officer who stood on Mr. Floyd’s neck have been elevated to 2nd degree murder, and the other three police officers have also been charged as accomplices.
Between 2013 and 2019, police in the United States killed over 7,000 people, according to data compiled by Mapping Police Violence, a research and advocacy group. And while Black Americans make up 13% of the U.S. population, they are two-and-a-half times more likely than white Americans to be killed by the police.
Maggie John sits down with a bishop who knew George Floyd personally.
Bishop Harding Smith is the President of Minnesota Act Now and Pastors at Spiritual Church of God in Minnesota.
We asked Bishop Smith for his response after a weekend full of protests and violence – and the message he hopes the world will hear amid this now, global human rights crisis.
“It’s really, really tough. You look in the eyes of people today, and you see real hurt, real pain. You see a burden that has been carried on for way too many years. People are helpless. People don’t know where to turn.”