State of Minnesota v. Derek Michael Chauvin

Subtitle: An immediate reaction to the verdict in vers libre

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There were days, in this land of the free and home of the brave, when lynchings were staged without charge, events for purveyors of cowardice and spewers of hate’s venom and their spectators – the old, too old not to have learned the better way of common human decency that accords to all basic dignity and the young, ne’er taught by the old to know better than to laugh in the face of human misery; the only price paid by the wretched souls hoisted on the scaffolds of these enemies of God’s Love, the bodies of whom, as strange fruit, were further despoiled by stones thrown and torches lit and justice was a word seldom heard and less applied to that class of folk, the colored, made to be eternal sufferers.

Today, justice has a color, nay, colors. Finally, red, white, and blue.

© 2021 PRA

3 thoughts on “State of Minnesota v. Derek Michael Chauvin

  1. Amen, Paul. There is great joy, relief, gratitude, and humility in Minneapolis and environs this evening. That the jury recognized the truth quickly and then proclaimed it for the world to hear was not a given, but was, I believe, a product of grace and the absolute dedication of many people involved in putting the case together and displaying the unequivocal truth of what was done to George Floyd. May this be just the first small step for Minnesota and for this country on the road to the calling and purpose we have yet to live up to – equality, dignity, and justice for all Americans under law. So grateful for this day. So relieved that it has come.

    Emilia walked over to George Floyd Square and is sending us pictures and videos. We would go too, but the streets are jammed, and I don’t know where we would find parking. I hope the people – all the people – can reclaim the streets by tomorrow.

    Love,

    Karen

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    1. My beloved Karen and Loretta, yes, Karen, I, too, believe that “the jury recognized the truth quickly and then proclaimed it for the world to hear” and, yes, Loretta, “Just sheer relief.”

      Nevertheless, in the fresh light of a new day, as I, as I am wont to do, ride the waves of cyberspace searching for and reading the varied responses to the Chauvin verdicts, I behold and without surprise the varied perspectives, both of those who favor the results and those who do not. In each case, as I read and reflect, there are manifold shades of variance. I am not surprised at this, for I am reminded of the complexity of our human species and the differing grounds of origin and history, experience and memory, values, and preference and prejudice on which we each stand. In a word, some who are in favor, as I perceive their points of view, have entirely diverse reasons. So, too, for those who are opposed.

      One large takeaway for me. The matter of trust — that is, one’s sense of confidence in the maintenance and operation of our legal system — is at the heart, as I perceive it, of many an opinion. For some, who did not trust the system, there is relief in the verdicts. For some, who did trust the system, there is dismay in the verdicts (for example, believing that the jury was overly influenced by matters of social rectification, i.e., Derek Chauvin hath been made to pay for the sins of white people).

      Personally, my takeaway is that it is a hard thing to dwell in a community composed of “the other” — all those who think and feel differently than I. Nevertheless, this is the community, the world in which I inhabit. And it is my calling and the focus of my human will to remain open to engage all. For I follow the One who lived and died and lives for all.

      Love you,
      Paul

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  2. Thank you Paul & Karen!!!

    Just sheer relief!!! I was terrified it wouldn’t end this way. I had a very unusual afternoon and was in a tire store getting two new tires when the verdict was read. Work stopped on all cars and each of the workers of all ethnicities briefly hugged and high-fived each other. But there was no cheering … then in another minute they all went back to work. Us 3 customers in the waiting area all nodded at each other and I think we all looked as if we’d been on a strenuous uphill hike… happy to have achieved success at this point, but still a long way to go.

    Sending love to you both and gratitude for this outcome!

    Loretta

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