Essex County Commissioner President – Wayne L. Richardson
Today’s verdict that found Derek Chauvin guilty on all counts for the Murder of George P. Floyd, Jr. is applauded by all justice loving people. Chauvin’s conviction is an indication that when the evidence of murder is overwhelming, beyond a shadow of a doubt, a true jury of one’s peers can and will do the right thing.
A potentially catastrophic political reaction in the streets has been averted, but there is much to be done to eliminate systemic racism and foster new and improved definitions of policing and community relations. The fear of unnecessary force for even minor interaction with police is many times traumatizing for people of color, and our children grow up amidst this trauma. The fear factor must be eliminated by redefining the purpose of policing and the role of police in our communities. As we figure out how to keep our communities peaceful, we must support legislation, programs and initiatives that prove that our lives matter. In order to move forward, the killings at the hands of police must cease.