Finding Derek Chauvin Guilty Was The Bare Minimum

Finding Derek Chauvin Guilty Was The Bare Minimum

The Jurors in the Derek Chauvin Trial Have Come To A Decision

Derek Chauvin was found guilty on every count. However, one murderer in jail does not fix the system that has been designed to exterminate and imprison black people. This does not fix policing in America.

Derek Chauvin is taken into custody as his lawyer watches after he was found guilty for the death of George Floyd © Court TV via AP

We all witnessed when George Floyd was murdered in the streets. And yet we still sat in anticipation not sure if the murder that was broadcasted to the entire world would have the perpetrator face any consequences. That is how broken our system is. That’s how accustomed to injustice the black community is.

Derek Chauvin is just the second officer to be convicted in an on-duty death case in Minnesota’s history. Since 2005, only five non-federal law enforcement officers were convicted of murder in an on-duty shooting and not have their conviction later overturned. Statistically, murder by the police goes unpunished.

The audacity of those to say that we have received justice flabbergasts me. Justice is equity, justice is when the systemic brutalization of black people by the hands of the police stops, justice is George Floyd going home to his daughter, to his family. The court held a murderer accountable, but we are far from justice.

Police act as the judge, jury, and executioner. Black people are three times more likely as white people to be killed during a police encounter. Black people do not get the luxury of being judged by a jury of their peers. Instead, they are massacred in the streets; their guilt or lack there of does not matter.

George Floyd was suspected of using a counterfeit twenty dollar bill, Eric Garner was selling single cigarettes, Tamir Rice had a toy gun, Elijah McClain looked “sketchy”, Breonna Taylor was sleeping. And a death sentence was laid upon all of them.

And in all cases I’ve mentioned, except that of George Floyd, the police got off scot-free. So I must ask, how can one have the nerve to tweet out “I can breathe”, the day Derek Chauvin was convicted? How can companies that have a long history of monetarily supporting police departments have to gall to release statements calling for justice? How was it possible for white people to even dare to try and paint George Floyd as a martyr for a movement?

This is why we scream Black Lives Matter. Because non-black people, especially white people, do not see us as human beings. We are a means to an end, an opportunity to get the most likes on their Instagram graphic, an opportunity to finally yell at a cop, an opportunity for them to seem “woke”, an opportunity for them to stick it to their parents by dating one of us, an opportunity for them to seem like “one of the good ones”.

White supremacy will and does take everything from black people, their lives included. White power enables them. White power enabled Derek Chauvin to kneel on George Floyd’s neck for nine minutes and twenty-nine seconds as he pled for his life and called out to his mother.

In this image from video, defendant, former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin, listens to verdicts at his trial for the 2020 death of George Floyd, Tuesday, April 20, 2021, at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, Minn. (AP)

And when that white power does not work in your favor, you look on in confusion as you are found guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter.

No justice can exist in a society where the police remain manifestations of slave catchers. There has never been true justice so there has never been true peace.

Osarenren Izevbigie
Osarenren Izevbigie

Osarenren Izevbigie is a published poet and Best of the Best Winner in Deadline Prose in the FSPA 2020 Digital Contest. She is a writer for the Caduceus Times who focuses on opinion and news writing. She’s on a mission to convince her peers that there’s more than just their town out there. When she’s not working you can find her sketching away, watching video essays, or spending too much time on Twitter