Yogyakarta, Indonesia. June 3, 2020: Portrait vector art for George Floyd in the style of canvas paintings made for editorial illustrations.
Cover Image © ariyantodeni

Why I Refuse to Watch the Derek Chauvin Trial

So… There’s a pretty big trial going on… Don’t know if you’ve heard. On May 25, 2020 an officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota named Derek Chauvin was recorded killing a Black man named George Floyd in front of a crowd. That event sadly helped spark the racial justice protests of 2020. Mr. Chauvin’s trial is happening now.

And I can’t watch it. Better yet, I refuse to watch it.

For Anyone Needing a Refresher

In case you need or want a somewhat summarized review of what went down back on May 25, 2020, in Minneapolis – here’s a serious moment with Dave Chappelle where he basically rants about the issue for a bit before bringing in some sobering perspective. He really gets into it around the 5-minute mark if you want to skip the preamble.

Why I Can’t Watch Derek Chauvin’s Trial

Trauma.

That is it.

I don’t want to relive the emotional trauma and anger associated with that moment in courtroom-required explicit detail.

I also don’t want to be disappointed with the outcome.

I know it’s very un-Christian of me to wish ill on anyone, but I like to think I’m a fan of justice. And, like many recent high-profile events involving police officers and the loss of Black life, I’m concerned that justice will not be served in a way that I see fit.

In my eyes, Derek Chauvin murdered George Floyd. Period.

And I have a feeling that although Mr. Chauvin will be charged with murder, and experts and his peers will say that he was in the wrong (the usual show), somehow… some way… he won’t be found guilty of that because he was “doing his job”. I want to say that even a conviction of manslaughter would be satisfactory, but I won’t lie to you — it won’t be. And he’s either going to get off entirely or probably get manslaughter (because that’s what history has shown happens in these situations).

Derek Chauvin (Mugshot and in uniform from the video of him killing George Floyd)
Mr. Derek Chauvin

I feel like if there’s any mention of drugs or anything like that in George Floyd’s system, Derek Chauvin’s lawyers will raise some form of doubt that lack of oxygen is how George Floyd died. And, I think — to MY understanding (I’m not a lawyer), murder convictions require a unanimous verdict.

Hearing how elements of these trials involving cops can be presented, and the fact that the jury has to base their convictions in the process of the law (which isn’t always a bad thing) – I feel like Mr. Chauvin is a little shielded from a murder charge. This is just my opinion.

And… To clarify this – in case anyone is wondering – I don’t think that all cops are bad. In fact, I know some really good ones. I DO think that there are some bad ones (as in any profession), but that’s nowhere near all of them. I have had a run-in or two with officers in my life and even been handcuffed, but fortunately, I wasn’t mistreated. I just think that those officers who step out of line while performing their duties should be held accountable – and a lot of them aren’t in high-profile matters that involve Black lives.

We will see how it goes, but I’m not holding my breath. If Mr. Chauvin gets a murder conviction… Wow. Justice served.

But… If he doesn’t (which he likely won’t). If he only gets manslaughter or, at worst, gets off entirely – I expect there will be more protests born of anger and pain. And anything beyond that, I don’t know.

This is a test that America seems to face constantly and fail at. And this isn’t the first time that video has been around. So… We shall see.

But I can’t watch it. I won’t watch it.

I will see how it ends.

Peace, and thanks for reading.

 

The soundtrack for this post provided by…

Image Credits:
– Cover Image © ariyantodeni (Shutterstock)
– Body Image © Associated Press

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