There is no one voice that can encompass the many meanings of the verdict handed down at the Hennepin County Courthouse on the afternoon of April 20, 2021.
With this in mind, we have gathered a collection of voices, each expressing a facet, a shard, a seed of the meaning of a Minneapolis jury finding Dereck Chauvin guilty of murdering George Floyd.
Isaac Bryan,Candidate for CA’s 54th Assembly District, Dir of Public Policy
@BuncheUCLA, and Founding Dir @UCLAbpp
For the first time in Minnesota history, a white police officer has been held accountable for killing a Black man.
To be clear: Justice would be George Floyd living today. There is still work to do, but this accountability should give us all some hope.
— Isaac Bryan (@ib2_real) April 20, 2021
Eunisses Hernandez, co-executive direct of La Defensa, a community-based org “dedicated to decarcerating the largest jail population in the US.”
Don’t get it confused, accountability is not justice. Justice is our Black community members not getting killed by cops. It means not getting criminalized or incarcerated for just living.
— Eunisses (@EunissesH) April 20, 2021
Lalo Acatraz, cartoonista, animation artist, Pulitzer Finalist
— Mexican Judge (@laloalcaraz) April 20, 2021
Michael Tubbs, youngest mayor in the history of Stockton, CA., now a special adviser for economic mobility and opportunity for Governor Gavin Newsom
The verdict was the correct one. Still, George Floyd’s murder was caused by systemic issues and will happen again without real structural changes.
Black folks deserve justice and love while alive.
White supremacy must end.
Our work continues. #BlackLivesMatter
— Michael Tubbs (@MichaelDTubbs) April 20, 2021
Shirley Weber, PhD, California Secretary of State
While I'm relieved by today's decision, I am also conscious of the fact that it is not enough.
We must continue fighting for African American dignity in this country.
True justice would be George Floyd getting to watch his daughter Gianna grow up. 1/4
— Shirley Weber, PhD (@DrWeber4CA) April 20, 2021
Sheriff Gregory Tony, first Black sheriff of Broward County
— Sheriff Gregory Tony (@bsosherifftony) April 20, 2021
Frank Stoltze, Correspondent with a focus on criminal justice and politics for KPCC 89.3FM Public Radio, LAist,
1/2 Here's a reminder to never automatically believe what police tell you (as if we need reminding). Here's how the Minneapolis PD initially described their encounter with George Floyd: “He was ordered to step from his car. After he got out, he physically resisted officers…
— Frank Stoltze (@StoltzeFrankly) April 21, 2021
Valerie Jarrette, former senior advisor to President Barak Obama, author of
History should remember the incredibly 17 year old Darnella Frazier who had the strength and composure to capture the murder of #georgefloyd on video. Without her video there may never have been #justice.
— Valerie Jarrett (@ValerieJarrett) April 20, 2021
Chris Vanderveen, director of reporting for @9NEWS, Denver
Reminder to all journalists…
— Chris Vanderveen (@chrisvanderveen) April 20, 2021
Maya Lau, Investigative reporter @latimes
Miriam Krinsky, former federal prosecutor, founder and executive director of Fair and Just Prosecution
Police kill around 1,000 people every year, but only seven officers have been convicted of murder in police shootings since 2005. At least 64 people, half of them people of color, have been killed by the police since the start of this trial. https://t.co/iAGlEBKAf4
— Miriam Krinsky (@miriamkrinsky) April 20, 2021
Mark Ridley-Thomas, Los Angeles City Council Member
Chauvin found guilty on all counts!
REMINDER: Elections have consequences. Major respect to Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison for his office’s successful prosecution and clinic on police use of force. #GeorgeFloyd #GeorgeFloydTrial #ChauvinIsGuilty @keithellison
— Mark Ridley-Thomas (@MRTempower) April 20, 2021
George Gascón, LA County District Attorney
The jury in the #DerekChauvinTrial delivered accountability, but the future of equality rests squarely in America’s hands.
— George Gascón (@GeorgeGascon) April 20, 2021
Alex Villanueva, Los Angeles County Sheriff
As we have all seen with the verdict in the Derek Chauvin case, we must have faith in the judicial process. The law will take its course, and justice will prevail. If a crime is committed, regardless of who the perpetrator is, they will be brought to justice. pic.twitter.com/TEgrP4CbeP
— Alex Villanueva (@LACoSheriff) April 20, 2021
John Kim, executive director The Advancement Project
My heart is with all of you who took to the streets – this is your victory.
— John Kim (@flowing_chi) April 20, 2021
Yamiche Alcindor, NPR White House correspondant
Thinking of Darnella Frazier who filmed the death of George Floyd at 17 and quite literally changed the world. She testified there are nights she stays up “apologizing & apologizing to George Floyd for not doing more.” But, she did so, so much to get to this murder conviction.
— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) April 20, 2021
S.A. Crosby, author of Black Lion King, winner of the 2021 @LATimes
Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller.
— S.A.Cosby (@blacklionking73) April 20, 2021
Rep. Stacey Plaskett, representing the Virgin Islands in the U.S. Congress
— Rep. Stacey Plaskett (@StaceyPlaskett) April 20, 2021
Michele Norris, founding director, The Race Card Project, Columnist at the Washington Post, Former NPR Host.
“Black men have been treated through the course of history as less than human” – Vice President Kamala Harris speaking with candor at the White House. “We are all a part of George Floyd’s legacy” she said and now we must all do our part to honor him
— Michele Norris (@michele_norris) April 20, 2021
People’s City Council Los Angeles
LAPD has called a city wide tactical alert. We are asking @LAPDHQ to remain calm and peaceful after results they do not agree with.
— People's City Council – Los Angeles (@PplsCityCouncil) April 20, 2021
Rashad Robinson, president of @ColorOfChange
The police & even prosecutors at the #DerekChauvinTrial are telling us that this was abt one bad apple, that the issue isn’t with policing itself. Nothing makes it clearer that this isn’t true than when a teenage girl asks for help but is murdered instead #JusticeForMakiyahBryant https://t.co/zwo8YPCK2L
— Rashad Robinson (@rashadrobinson) April 21, 2021
Jelani Cobb, staff writer, The New Yorker, professor @Columbiajourn
The names to be said. This is a cemetery where names of people who have died at the hands of the police have been memorialized near George Floyd Square. There were 133 markers here, prior to Daunte Wright’s death. pic.twitter.com/dFPmHEp4Cz
— jelani cobb (@jelani9) April 15, 2021
Stacey Abrams, founder of @fairfightaction, @faircount, and @The_SEAP
The evidence of our eyes met at last by accountability in the eyes of justice. #DerekChauvinTrial
— Stacey Abrams (@staceyabrams) April 20, 2021
Equal Justice Initiative
The presumption of guilt assigned to Black and brown people makes their victimization by police, prosecutors, judges, and prison officials tolerable to many people in this country. That did not change with today’s verdict, but it must change if this country is to make progress.
— Equal Justice Initiative (@eji_org) April 20, 2021
Cerise Castle, journalist, author of the investigative series, A Tradition of Violence: The History of Deputy Gangs in the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department
I was detained today while covering a press conference hosted by the LA County Sheriff's Department. Yes, I had my press pass. https://t.co/GtTDA37Kuk
— Cerise Castle (@cerisecastle) April 20, 2021
Ben Crump, defense attorney, civil rights activist
Editor’s note: The girl’s name is Ma’Khia, her mother says she was 16.
Top photo of post-verdict crowd demonstrating peaceful outside Cup Foods, courtesy of @jelani9 Twitter