As a former resident of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, I empathize with everyone taking to the streets and I am not surprised by the destruction. The police killed their neighbor, have a history of killing their neighbors, and accountability for these injustices is nowhere in sight.
Flames are not a healthy form of discourse, but it’s a justified response when police officers are better mobilized to protect a co-worker’s house than they are willing and able to protect a suspect, a stopped driver, or a concerned citizen from their co-worker’s wrath.
Every single death caused by the state’s negligence should be protested. If those in power do not immediately right those wrongs and make honest attempts to prevent future deaths, their authority should end. The people of Minneapolis grant them power and have the right to take it away through non-life-threatening, destructive means. In fact, that may be the only way to make their leaders comprehend the value of life and be stirred to action.
Knowing my community is not immune from accidents and malicious acts, I ask: what is Madison doing right now to prevent deaths and ensure an accountable response if such a tragedy occurs? There is no room for indifference to life and this moment requires more than statements of support. We need progressive rulemaking, police training, and public dialogue.
The fire is already lit in our hearts, don’t allow it to spread to our streets through inaction or incompetence.
CapTimes – June 6, 2020