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People gather and pray around a makeshift memorial, Tuesday, May 26, 2020, in Minneapolis, near the site where a black man, who was taken into police custody the day before, later died. The FBI and Minnesota agents are investigating the death of a black man in Minneapolis police custody after video from a bystander showed a white officer kneeling on his neck during his arrest as he pleaded that he couldn't breathe. (Elizabeth Flores/Star Tribune via AP)
Margaret Carter
Published: 29 May 2020

margaret carter introMargaret Carter, the first Black woman elected to the Oregon legislatureFrom: Margaret Carter

Dear Mr. Floyd,  

I felt your pain in calling on your mother who had passed away a few years ago! Never, as a Black mother of two Black Sons, have I felt so powerless in responding to your cry. As Black mothers, so often we say, our Black boys across this nation belong to all of us. For over 400 years now that has been true because White slave owners, police and other vigilante White men have taken it upon themselves to be rulers of our fate. I could not watch, after looking at the tape the first time, because my heart, my flowing tears and my anger would not allow me to do so. As you laid there in severe pain and struggling to breathe, my heart bled, and my tears began to flow as if they came from a faucet. I am so sorry! The City Counselor of Minnesota, Ms. Jenkins, so aptly said on TV, the virus of racism and the killing of our Black men are the most urgent diseases, along with the coronavirus that America needs to be dealing with, and I agree wholeheartedly that is the case.

For all of our White friends who believe in social justice and the valuing of life, I suggest now is the time for you to stand tall and bring to the forefront your empathy and actions to help correct the system. The African American community cannot do this alone. Besides, it is more of a White issue than a Black issue, and we are all supposed to be in this together. Our nation, in order to fulfill the constitutional rights of All Men are Created Equal, must work toward a more fulfilled society. It is true that we are the targets of this dastardly activity, not only through the killings of our physical bodies, via the lack of Health Care, but the strangulating effects of the lack of economic prosperity.   

I honestly believe that most of the Whites in this country want to see justice prevail, but your silence is killing us.  

I know, George, what happened to you was one of the most illegal, heinous, murderous actions to be taken in the name of a legal government, but rest in peace my son because the world saw what took place in Minnesota, and I am praying prayers of Hope and having sleepless nights on the part of those in government to have a heart of respect and greater compassion for all Human Life and bring charges against the four officers involved.

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