Representative Ilhan Omar (D-MN) went on CNN on Sunday to warn that the city of Minneapolis, Minnesota is “on edge” as the trial of Derek Chauvin continues.
Omar Discusses Watching Chauvin Trial
Chauvin is the former police officer who has been charged with the murder of George Floyd, who died in police custody last May. When asked what it has been like to watch Chauvin’s trial on television, Omar said, “It’s been, you know, re-traumatizing. It’s been really hard.”
“I think the one part that stayed with me is the fact that everyone who took the witness stand said they felt helpless,” she said, according to Politico. “That is a feeling that we know really well here in Minneapolis when it comes to police abuse.”
“Most deaths in police custody do not result in charges for the officers involved,” anchor Jake Tapper responded. “Even when there are cases, and they go to trial, convictions of police officers are still relatively rare. Are you and your city prepared for the possibility of a hung jury or a not guilty in this case?”
“So the community’s only edge about that. You know we have seen justice not delivered in our community for many years,” Omar replied. “I think that there is a lot of confidence in Attorney General Keith Ellison and the prosecutors in this case, but we are all eagerly awaiting to see how this trial shakes out.”
“It’s been really horrendous to watch the defense put George Floyd on trial instead of the former police officer who’s charged with his murder,” she continued.
This comes after CNN host Don Lemon claimed that the video of Floyd’s death is “indicative” of how black men feel in this country when they have interactions with police. He then called on Americans to look past any problems he may have had by saying “George Floyd is us.”
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“It is indicative of what especially black men in this country feel and have felt for centuries; that someone is on their neck all the time, living in a paranoia about racism. … Especially if they get into an encounter with police officers, will that police officer see my humanity? That’s what everybody is feeling. And that’s why it’s so traumatic, as you say,” Lemon said.
“I’ve said America is on trial. And I say yes, George Floyd is us,” the CNN host continued. “And I get so much pushback from saying, it’s not us because he had this in his past. … What does that have to do with his encounter with a police officer?”
“What does that have to do with something that you did years ago? What does that have to do with anything?” Lemon added. “Why are you making that excuse? Why are you trying to justify in your mind the inhumane treatment of a person by bringing up everything that’s happened in their lives? You bring up all the negatives. What about the positives?”
This piece was written by James Samson on April 4, 2021. It originally appeared in LifeZette and is used by permission.
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