One year ago today, society erupted in a way that it has not done so in decades. Centuries of injustice and state violence culminated in the successive deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd. In the midst of a pandemic unlike anything the world has experienced in over a century, a video of Floyd’s death at the hands of convicted murderer Derek Chauvin brought millions of outraged citizens out to the streets. From California to Vermont, reports of protests emerged in all 50 states in the span of just a few weeks. Not to mention, protest movements inspired by Floyd’s death popped in several different locations outside of the United States. The summer of 2020 proved to be unlike anything the world has seen.
It can be debated how much progress has been made in regards to police reform since Floyd’s death. While cities like New York have reduced qualified immunity for police and Chauvin has been convicted, hundreds of people have been killed at the hands of police since Floyd’s death. Moreover, Daunte Wright has killed by a former police officer just days before the Chauvin verdict and Ma’Khia Bryant was killed just moments after Chauvin was convicted. Still, one thing can not be debated. The last 365 days have been wild to say the least.
Looking back at where the nation was at this point last year, a number of public figures have offered their thoughts. Michelle Obama, Kerry Washington, Jamal Crawford, Natasha Rothwell and several others have taken to have conversations about this moment in history. Here are just a few.
The 1 year anniversary of #GeorgeFloyd’s murder is a reminder that for some, the issue became clear 1 year ago. For many of us, Black Lives have never NOT mattered. If U R new to this, stay in the fight ?? happy 1 year awakening. If U R not new to this, sending ??. Today & always
— kerry washington (@kerrywashington) May 25, 2021
“The deterioration in support is noteworthy because we do not merely observe a return to pre-Floyd opinion levels. Rather, since last summer, Republicans and white people have actually become less supportive of Black Lives Matter than they were before the death of George Floyd…
— brittany packnett cunningham ain’t here for real. (@MsPackyetti) May 25, 2021
Today marks 1 year since George Floyd was murdered. We must always remember the 9+ minutes that Chauvin kneeled on his neck & we must be committed to holding police accountable. George Floyd & others who have met similar fates must not have died in vain. The struggle continues.
— Maxine Waters (@RepMaxineWaters) May 25, 2021
RIP George Floyd. You changed the world. ??
— ? Jamal Crawford (@JCrossover) May 25, 2021
George Floyd was murdered one year ago today. Since then, hundreds more Americans have died in encounters with police—parents, sons, daughters, friends taken from us far too soon. But the last year has also given us reasons to hope.
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) May 25, 2021