When both sides are wrong: George Floyd’s death and the violent responses

Why Evolution Is True

Let me state at the outset that I am not equating what the police did to George Floyd with the violence of the rioters responding to his murder. Looting, burning, and breaking into stores is not as horrible as murder, and of course most of the protestors against Floyd’s murder were peaceful. But violent protest is also unconscionable. And so I’ll call out both the cops and the rioters, but am not trying to say there’s a moral equivalence—not at all. But I don’t think there is any excuse for rioting.

What the Minneapolis police did to George Floyd, with one kneeling on his neck while he was prone for a full eight minutes and 46 seconds (two minutes after Floyd became unresponsive), suffocating him to death, while three cops stood by, is unconscionable. The cop who knelt on his neck has been rightly indicted for third-degree murder. The other…

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