By Armando Vazquez
Just think about that modern day American activist slogan, No Justice! No Peace! For just a bit.
No Justice! Who can deny in America or throughout the world for that matter in the wake of the horrific killing of George Floyd that, a black man, some ones son, was denied justice at every conceivable level just before his life was almost nonchalantly snuffed out by the Minneapolis killer cops? What is missed in the No Justice! No Peace! equation often is that George Floyd as he was being murdered suffered for what seemed like an infinitesimal period of time inexplicable pain, inhumane torture, horrific suffering and finally monstrously deprived by agents of the state of his innate human right to peace in life. In the end Floyd got injustice and brutal, deadly violence, why?
The brutal and senseless killing of George Floyd by the Minneapolis cops is the epitome of American injustice, violence and murder at the hands of the agents of the state. This system has for over 244 years completely and totally dehumanized and degraded black men (and people of color) into a subspecies of humanity by the justice, law enforcement, and your everyday cop on the beat system that historically been methodically “tweaked and adjusted” to more precisely search out and nail people of color to their hypocritical law and order cross. A wickedly twisted and perverse law enforcement system that in theory is in place to protect and serve all Americans equally, but in reality provides the local cops the absolute power to routinely profile, arrest, torture and finally kill with impunity people of color. That is our America justice system today, just listen to the dictatorial and treasonous hate filled madness and vile that is spews daily from the pathological mouth of your President and his pompous puppets if you have any doubt.
Justice and injustice cannot occupy the same place and time, that hypocritical, divisive and cruel experiment in American jurisprudence and policing is now 244 old. What this 244 year old law and order system has shown over and over again is that it is racist and unjust to the core. The uprisings that are occurring across this nation are screaming to the authorities; not one more minute will we tolerate state sponsored injustice, pain, suffering, murder and law enforcement mayhem and chaos against people of color (any one) in this nation. No Justice! No Peace!
The current and failed jurisprudence and policing models of America must be abolished and replaced with a system that lives up to the lofty pronouncement of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights that proclaim that all (women and) men are created equal. The just notion of equality cuts both ways, it must demand equal protection under the law but also demand equal accountability. We know that in America today people of color are not treated equality and yet are held to a much higher standard of guilt, accountability, and state instituted punishment. We can also add that that people of color face a systemic “Carte Blanc” inequality throughout every system of American life, from education, health, law enforcement, economics, employment, entertainment, religion and even the way we play and recreate. Everything we do as people of color is filter through a psychological sick and racist American lenses that seeks to deprive people of color their rights and rather works to keeps us institutionalized, controlled and oppressed.
While Black folk and other minorities get killed by cops, spineless politicians and gutless community leaders avoid the mandatory work and fight for the complete and total reformation of the American Justice Apparatus. The entire rotten justice and law enforcement system, from the Presidency to the street cop must be gutted and reformed. Taking on the law enforcement community and the local cops is a daunting, lonely and frightening task. The job of cop reformer takes guts because you have just effectively put a red bull’s eye on your back, you have put your life on the line, and if you survive, it will require your lifetime commitment. The job of reforming the American cop is monumentally tough, that is why there are such few brave and committed takers. Law enforcement know that that they can crush with their infinite and deadly resources any individual, or group in the community that is working toward law enforcement and police reform.
I am moved to write this opinion because like so many American I am sick with grief and pathetic impotence at how callously a black life (any life) can be snuffed by agent of the state and we as American can do absolutely nothing to change that brutal murderous way of current policing. I want to shout and scream out at my “law abiding” and the “do the right thing by the cops” friends and family that always find ways to make pathetic excuses for “murder at the hands of the cops” to get their collective heads out of the sand and stop making excuse for a 244 year old law and order system that was racist, corrupt and murderous when it was first created by the slave owning propertied elites of that time and nothing has changed. Our pathetic hand wring excuses and inaction, my brothers, makes us complicit in the murder of George Floyd. There has been enough blood shed and lives lost by people of color at the hands of the American police. NO JUSTICE! NO PEACE!
Armando Vazquez, M.Ed. is Executive Director of Acuna Art Gallery/Café on A, Executive Director for The KEYS Leadership Academy and Chairman of the Oxnard Multicultural Mental Health/coalition
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Citizens Journal.