The protests that have arisen across this country in response to the tragic killing of George Floyd represent a real and valid frustration over systemic racism, law enforcement practices and the criminal justice system.
I see the peaceful protesters as courageous and inspiring. For every one of them, I know there are many more people at home who support their cause.
The violence inflicted upon people, businesses, buildings and property by a small minority of people on the streets is not coming from the peaceful protesters. These people are opportunists, whether angry individuals or despicable organized groups, they are taking cruel advantage of George Floyd’s death. They have destroyed many businesses and places of worship that our communities rely upon, often in areas where services were already in short supply.
For centuries, protests have raised public awareness and often created momentum and an environment for change. It also reminds us that it is everyone’s responsibility to turn these protests into further action by all of us in our daily lives. As your Assemblymember, I accept my role in this. Another powerful tool is to vote, at every level – federal, state and local. Elections for local elected officials across this state often have very low voter turnout, but this is where many policies are developed and implemented, whether it’s reforming police practices, judicial reform, or addressing many other community issues.
The COVID-19 pandemic has made the past few months extremely difficult for everyone and added to that, the tragic death of George Floyd amplifies the continuing inequality in the lives of many. We all have a part to play in making things better. I will do my part as your Assemblymember. It is all of us, working together, who will make justice and equality a reality.
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