On May 25th, George Floyd, an aspiring truck driver and current security guard, was murdered by four police officers responding to a “forgery in progress.” The police pinned Floyd on the ground with a knee to his neck for many minutes, ignoring pleas from Floyd and bystanders to let him breathe. In this protracted, needless, and barbaric fashion, they took his life. The pigs originally claimed George Floyd had physically resisted orders to exit his car, but this has subsequently been proven to be false by surveillance footage. It is the latest example of a legal lynching, with retroactive, fraudulent justification.
Democrat Leaders Call for Passivity
Liberal state leaders have been quick to condemn the murder and give their basic, rhetorical calls for passivity and inaction. Democratic Mayor of Minneapolis Jacob Frey encouraged Minnesotans to “exercise their voice,” that he “understood their anger,” as if he could as a suburban VIllanova law school graduate, and finished by discouraging large gatherings because of COVID-19. Vice-president candidate to be and staff-abuser Amy Klobuchar called for a “thorough” investigation.
But we know what those investigations find. They take their time, wait for anger to wane. They look at Philando Castile being shot in front of his family while being calm, composed, and informative with police, and find that no one should be held responsible. Frey and the liberals can conclude as they have that these particular officers “breached department policy” by strangling an innocent man to death over several minutes. They may change the policy further, make officers go to a seminar with free lunch on how not to murder someone. In the end, we know the justice the capitalist state provides. We know how they are complicit in lynchings, so long as there isn’t video footage, like with the case of Ahmaud Arbery.
Power Concedes Nothing Without a Demand
It is for this reason that the American Party of Labor gives its full support and endorsement to the uprising currently occurring in Minnesota, that saw thousands march militantly against the 3rd Police Precinct, facing tear gas, rubber bullets, and pigs in riot gear. The fact that gun-toting reactionary anti-lockdown protesters, predominantly white, were faced with handshakes and smiles from the pigs across the country in the past month only further underlines the urgent need for militant, ceaseless action.
Those rising up against police have experienced the futility of reformism and the brutality of police self-management in their everyday life, year after year. They say with their actions, emphatically: enough with this system that preys on the skills, ambitions, and lives of black workers, that measures stock market gains next to death tolls, that puts children on trial, and that tells women that one sexual abuser is better than another. This system cannot be sufficiently investigated, reformed, or made right by policy. It is fundamentally, at its core, racist, sexist, and anti-worker. Amy Klobuchar’s investigations will not restore George Floyd’s life, nor meaningfully change in any way the racist heart of American society. Life may come cheap to the capitalists in this country, on both sides of the aisle, but it doesn’t come cheap to oppressed and exploited workers, and we should and will fight, by any means necessary, for a society that values every human life.
Maintain the Pressure! Demand Community Control of Police Now!
These next moments will be critical in procuring justice for George Floyd, and bolstering our movement to fundamentally remake police departments and their state. We must be students of the Ferguson uprising, learn from its victories and defeats, and tirelessly continue our work to build connections within the militant anti-racist and anti-capitalist movement. For the next series of days, our pressure must be ceaseless. Every police officer and city politician across the country must be made to feel the urgency of our demands for justice, that this is not business as usual, that this is not another murder swept under the rug of internal investigation, that things will fundamentally change in the wake of the power of a mobilized people. The temperature of the city must increase, such that all within it must declare themselves on this issue. Activists from all across the country must flock to support the movement in Minnesota, financially, in person, or by any means available.
The American Party of Labor, given this context and information, demands that:
- All four officers responsible for the murder of George Floyd be immediately charged and arrested for murder, and that Derek Chauvin, Badge #1087, be charged with first degree murder
- That the Minneapolis Police Department immediately be put under direct control of a democratic body of community leaders, that will conduct the investigation and give direct future oversight.
- That all four officers are sentenced to the maximum allowable sentence under Minnesota law, in the case of first-degree murder, life.
The American Party of Labor offers its full support for the militant action that took place on May 27th, and fully endorses the continuing uprising in its aim to fundamentally remake the police and the state they serve. We will not stop our tireless work until justice is done to George Floyd’s killers, and the petulant rot of racism lying at the heart of the American nation is excised with a hot knife, once and for all.