Friday, July 30, 2021

EDITORIAL: Black Lives Still Matter

Cardinal Points

Cardinal Points would like to start the editorial by celebrating the guilty verdict in the three-week Derek Chauvin trial. While this outcome is but a fragment of true justice, it instills a sense of hope that equity will prevail in the long run. It should be said that George Floyd should still be alive today, but it is a small victory that Chauvin was convicted of his murder.

Following the verdict of the Floyd trial, solidarity caucuses such as the H.U.B/C.S.I. for Black students, the Kyla Relaford room for non-Black POC students, the Cardinal Lounge for white students and a generalized space in the Admissions lobby have been established. These spaces have been offered to the SUNY Plattsburgh community to process their emotions and  express their feelings. The solidarity spaces will be open for the community until April 27.

There will be a protest and vigil, starting outside the Amite Plaza to Hawkins Pond, on April 23. This will allow for the campus community to honor Floyd’s memory and speak out against police brutality.

The SUNY Plattsburgh campus, as well as the nation, has been impacted by the death of Floyd. Police brutality still remains an issue in the United States.

Sadly, not too long after the verdict, 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant was killed by police in Columbus, Ohio. This is the most recent attack of police against the Black community. Bryant, who called 911 for protection against a group of teenage girls who threatened violence, was shot by officer Nicholas Reardon following the call.

While the death of Bryant is a tragedy, there is an investigation now pending within the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation to see that justice is served. Phone records and police videos were found, which will aid the investigation for Bryant’s family.

Throughout the Floyd trial, there are instances of police brutality that have come to light. Adam Toledo, a 13-year-old Mexican American boy from Chicago, was killed by police on March 29. Toledo, just in the 7th grade, was shot after “not following police orders” after possessing a handgun.

Roger Allen, a 44-year-old Black man from San Francisco, was killed by police on April 7. Allen was shot in the passenger’s seat of a friend’s truck. Police suspected Allen of possessing a firearm. This was found to be a BB gun.

Daunte Wright, a 20-year-old Black man from Minneapolis, was killed by police on April 11. Wright, who was targeted by police after having an outstanding warrant, was shot by police. The death of Wright was considered “an accidental discharge” as the officer who killed him meant to reach for her taser, instead of a handgun. The question is apparent— how do you confuse a bright yellow taser with a silver handgun?

One thing is clear. Will the United States see justice for Breonna Taylor, who was murdered in her own home by police? Taylor’s memory will live on as the fight against police brutality continues. She will never be forgotten.

Black lives still matter. Victims of police brutality matter. They mattered then, they will matter in the future and they absolutely matter now.


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