最近，一个名叫乔治·弗洛伊德(George Floyd)的手无寸铁的黑人在明尼苏达州明尼阿波利斯，被一名白人警察残酷地杀害了。他向警察乖乖投降后，被固定在地上，窒息而死，警察Derek Chauvin将膝盖跪在弗洛伊德的脖子上超过8分钟。弗洛伊德最后遗言的视频广为流传。他说：“我无法呼吸。”
发生的一切是严重的不公正。不幸的是，这类事件在美国经常发生。那就让我们讨论一下它以及它为什么发生。在美国，警察杀死黑人(尤其是黑人男性)的情况十分普遍。在乔治·弗洛伊德(George Floyd)之前，今年三月，有一名26岁手无寸铁的黑人妇女布雷娜·泰勒(Breonna Taylor)，警察以她涉嫌毒品为由进入她的房子搜查(警察并未表明自己的身份)，她被警察开了8枪杀害。
最初的非洲人是在1500年代作为奴隶被带到美洲的，直到1865年(在美国内战之后)获得自由。也就是说在300多年中，他们被迫服务于白人 - 被殴打，出售和像动物一样对待。甚至在废除奴隶制之后，直到1960年代的民权运动之前，黑人仍然被隔离并被视为二等公民。这又是有100年之久，他们被告知自己比白人低下。所以这个历史总共加起来超过400年。现在是2020年-民权运动仅仅发生在60年前。因此，当你看到那些统计数字时，比如，有多少黑人贫困潦倒，有多少黑人生活在犯罪多发的社区，或者在美国监狱系统中有多少黑人.....请注意，是种族歧视的制度，使他们限于这种困境数百年之久。
Recently, an unarmed Black man named George Floyd was brutally murdered by a white police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He was pinned to the ground after peacefully surrendering to the cop and suffocated to death as the officer, Derek Chauvin, had his knee on Floyd’s neck for over 8 minutes. The video of Floyd’s last words went viral. “I can’t breathe,” he said.
He was pleading for his life. At one point, he mentions wanting his mother, who had passed away 2 years ago. Anyone who watches the video can see that all he wanted was air.
What happened was a grave injustice. Unfortunately, these types of incidents happen way too often in the United States. Let's talk about this and why it happens.
Instances of Black people (and especially Black men), being killed by the police in the US is quite common. Before George Floyd, there was Breonna Taylor, a 26 year old unarmed Black woman who was shot in her house by police officers 8 times after they entered her house (without announcing themselves) on a suspected drug search in March. There was Ahmaud Arbery, a 25 year old Black man who was going around his neighborhood on a run in February when two white men who thought he looked like a burglar who had been robbing houses in the area stopped and shot him. Arbery was, of course, innocent, and not the robber they were looking for - but the truth is that even if he was the culprit, that shouldn’t have mattered. No one should ever have the right to kill people on a “suspicion.”
There was Trayvon Martin, a 17 year old Black boy in Florida who was shot by a neighborhood watchman who thought he looked “suspicious” in 2012. There was Michael Brown, an 18 year old Black man who was shot 6 times by a white cop after being seen stealing a small box of cigarettes in 2014 (when does stealing a small box of cigarettes mean you have to be violently murdered before you’re even arrested?). There was Eric Garner, a 44 year old Black man who was put in a chokehold by officers after resisting arrest for illegally selling cigarettes on the street (again - why does such a small crime have to equal death)? There was Philando Castile, a 32 year old Black man who was stopped and shot 7 times by an officer while in his car with his wife and daughter.
Of course, these are only a few of countless instances where this has happened in US history. I mention them because I want you to ask, “why does committing a small crime equal a death sentence?”, “why does being under suspicion equal a death sentence?”, and “why do the police act this way, especially towards this specific group of people?” It is also important to note that in almost all of these cases - the police officers usually get away with no charges under their belt.
You see, this is why there is the #BlackLivesMatter movement. The movement started not because white lives or Asian or Hispanic lives don’t matter, but because there is a history of Black lives not mattering in the United States. After all, you cannot say “all lives matter” when Black lives currently don’t.
Now, let’s talk about the police. In the US, the police are trained to use force. They are trained to shoot instead of de-escalating a situation. And throughout the years, you see so many instances of people of all races and genders getting killed because of police brutality. However, because of the history of racism against African-Americans in the USA, most of these instances happen to Black people.
The first Africans were brought to the Americas as slaves in the 1500s until they gained their freedom in 1865 (after the American Civil War). That is over 300 years of being forced to serve white people - of being beaten, sold, and treated like animals. And even after slavery was abolished, Black people were still segregated and treated as second-class citizens until the civil rights movement in the 1960s. That is 100 more years of being told that they were not equal to white people - 400+ years in total. And here we are in 2020 - only 60 years after the civil rights movement. So when you think about the statistics of how many Black people are poor or live in crime-ridden neighborhoods, or how many Black people are in the US prison system, understand that there is a racist system that has kept them that way for hundreds of years.
A lot of people are currently worried about the destruction of property and the looting going around - I wish I had a simple solution to all of this, but I don’t. However, all I ask is that you understand why Americans are currently more angry about police brutality than they are about buildings being destroyed. Remember: buildings can be replaced, but people cannot be. And with 40% of Americans currently unemployed and stuck at home for the past three months, and with the president of the United States threatening to shoot protestors on Twitter, the situation is the worst it’s ever been.
If you are interested in helping the situation, here are a few links where you can donate:
The family of George Floyd: https://www.gofundme.com/f/georgefloyd
National Bail Fund: https://bailproject.org
NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People): https://www.naacpldf.org/about-us
Health services: https://northstarhealth.wordpress.com/about-us/
In China, most of the population is comprised of chinese people. It’s rare to see a non-asian person in the country, even more rare to see someone who is black. But I ask that you, from the bottom of your hearts, see that they’re just like us too.
They are mothers and fathers to little boys and girls, they are doctors working to save the endangered lives of the world, they are artists and music producers and athletes and so so much more, just like us.
That’s why it angers us to see that they are being attacked and murdered by the police force. Why does the color of their skin anger them so much? It’s not only men being killed, it’s women and children, too.
If you have seen the news, the recent protests have erupted due to George Floyd’s death. However, his death is only the tip of the iceberg. These new protests have erupted due to years and years of police brutality against african-americans. Please understand that they are not just angry: they are tired, they are scared for their lives. They are scared that their parents will be hurt, they are afraid that they will never be able to see their children again.
We, as a community, chose to come to America for new opportunities, for our children, and for our future. However, African Americans were kidnapped from their home countries, shipped to the United States, and then forced to become slaves to the white man. We believed that America was a “land of freedom and opportunity,” but African Americans knew from the very beginning that that phrase wasn’t for everyone. It wasn’t for them.
As chinese people, we know all too well that America is oftentimes racist against us as well. The recent coronavirus proves this. We’ve been called names, harassed. Unlike white people, we know what it feels like to be attacked because of how we look. And I know that because of this, the chinese community is more reserved and gated, shielding itself from ridicule from others. We prioritize ourselves and our families. We don’t like to get too involved with the matters of others.
However, whether you like it or not, that idea is changing. If you are parents, you may see that your children are becoming more vocal about this matter. And it’s because that we’ve grown up here in America surrounded by races of all kind. We know that black people are caring and helpful, because they are our teachers. We know that black people are kind, because they are our friends and classmates. We know that black people are smart and inspiring, because one became our president. In America, we have grown up listening and loving black music and culture: “rap” has taken not only the U.S. by storm, but this form of music is now seen all over the world.
That’s why we refuse to have any more Black lives unrighteously taken away. Maybe, for your generation, you can turn your head and look away. In China, you were able to do this because you lived thousands of miles from here. But for us, the generation that was born and is being brought up in America, we are going to protect those who were born and raised alongside us.
We are not protesting because we hate the police, we are protesting because we love black lives. It is the police that is putting those black lives in danger. Oftentimes, the media warps our perceptions of others. Apps like Facebook,, WeChat, Douyin (tiktok) and others thrive off of controversy and fighting. All I ask is that you take a step back from what the media feeds you and listen to the voices of others, not just white people, or chinese people. Listen to black voices. I promise you that by choosing to open your mind up, you’ll understand why we are working so hard to protect the black community.
Thank you, and please consider my words.