George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis was tragic.
An American citizen died after more than eight minutes with a police officer’s knee over his neck, as he begged for air.
Floyd’s past convictions, some of them for serious crimes, played no part in what the country saw on video.
He was detained after allegedly attempting to pass a counterfeit bill, and he isn’t around to tell his side of the story, which he was entitled to do as a U.S. citizen.
Floyd was apparently denied his right to due process by officer Derek Chauvin — if what we witnessed on video is correct and in the proper context, and it looks like it was.
But is his death more tragic than the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.?
Does the death of a man killed in the custody of a police officer, while allegedly committing a petty crime, carry more historical significance than the slaying of a civil rights icon?
Joe Biden, the country’s former vice president and the Democratic Party’s current nominee for the White House, sure thinks so.
In his rush to join the Floyd movement, Biden — who supported mass incarceration in his 1994 crime bill — compared Floyd’s death to King’s.
“Even Dr. King’s assassination did not have the worldwide impact that George Floyd’s death did,” Biden said last week while speaking at a Philadelphia economic roundtable discussion, Fox News reported.
“It’s just like television changed the Civil Rights movement for the better when they saw Bull Connor and his dogs ripping the clothes off of elderly black women going to church and firehoses ripping the skin off of young kids,” he continued.
“What happened to George Floyd — now you got how many people around the country, millions of cell phones. It’s changed the way everybody’s looking at this,” Biden concluded. “Look at the millions of people marching around the world.”
Democrats are always posturing to secure black votes, which they believe they are entitled to.
This sometimes leads them to say things which appear like crystalline attempts to latch on to anything they think will endear them to black Americans.
Democrats pandering for minority votes often make outlandish claims.
With Floyd’s death currently guiding policy decisions, a popular culture movement and news cycles, Biden is rushing to align himself with that movement, which aims to put an end to perceived racial inequality in the criminal justice system and among police departments.
But Biden doesn’t have a lot of wiggle room on decrying Floyd’s death as part of a systemic issue.
Politico reported that when he spoke in support of his mass incarceration crime bill in 1994, Biden said: “Every time Richard Nixon, when he was running in 1972, would say, ‘Law and order,’ the Democratic match or response was, ‘Law and order with justice’ — whatever that meant. And I would say, ‘Lock the S.O.B.’s up.’”
While the accuracy of Biden’s words in 1994, or what he says he said in 1972, is not being questioned, it is important to point out that he said them, or he says he did.
It’s also important to recognize those words don’t at all align with the rhetoric Biden is spewing now, as he now supports broad reforms for law enforcement amid growing anti-police sentiment across the country.
Perhaps a person, or even a politician, can have a change of heart, and their views can evolve over decades and decades in public office.
Perhaps therein lies the problem.
And after 48 years in politics, Biden has done nothing of note to solve the country’s apparent racial divide or crime problems, and now he’s on record playing both sides of the issue.
If anything, Biden has made both issues worse not only by authoring legislation that has made so many black Americans feel disenfranchised but also by now diminishing the memory of Dr. King in a transparent attempt to score political points with voters.
Both King and Floyd were black men who died tragically, and each man’s death sparked riots across the country. But their legacies are not comparable.
The media case against Chauvin has not even proven, through a preponderance of the evidence, that Floyd was killed for being black. All we know definitively is that he suffered and died while in police custody.
King’s voice, meanwhile, had grown so loud and influential by 1968 that it motivated a man with a rifle to silence it during a time without social media, when people without a media microphone were essentially voiceless.
King and is message were that legendary.
Democrats, such as Biden, will say just about anything in their attempts to retain black Americans as a reliable voting bloc.
While Biden yet hasn’t asked us to put a Beyoncé 8-track tape in our phonographs, he is asking us to compare Floyd with King, which is a disingenuous and petty attempt at being politically advantageous.
The influence of King’s voice will forever run unparalleled, Floyd’s death is a tragic example of an American citizen being denied due process and Biden’s comments comparing the two are an example of how dispassionate lifelong politicians can become.
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