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The murder of George Floyd by police – the legacy of slavery

Karel Riley  |  Issue:

Our country was founded on slavery. It was legal to torture and kill slaves because they were treated under the law as property, not as humans. The economic system of capitalism, which has existed in this country for a long time, is based on amassing the maximum profit from human labor, with slavery being the most extreme example.

The Civil War brought an end to slavery, but not an end to the culture and economics that had developed around slavery and exists to this day in a different form. The descendants of slaves, and by extension, all people of color, are treated as less than full human beings.

The police forces in the United States grew out of slave patrols and attempts to control Native people. Thus, they inherited the view that property is more important than human life and that people of color have the least value of all people. The police in many cities have an active white supremacist group within them, some even have organized KKK or similar groups.

This is the backdrop to the horrifying and outrageous murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis by a group of four police officers. For decades, the police have terrified, abused, tortured, and murdered Black people, mostly outside of public view. They have done this for so long, and with impunity, that they continue to openly murder Black people now, even in front of many witnesses, while being videotaped, believing they can get away with murder.

The only thing that will stop them is for the PEOPLE to rise up, in great numbers, in unity, demanding an end to the atrocities and the beginning of justice. We can’t stop until our movement is strong enough to control the police and force them to serve US.

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