The following is a statement from David Villalobos, Statewide Right2Justice Coordinator of the Texas Organizing Project, in reaction to a jury finding former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin guilty on all three counts in the killing of George Floyd:
“Our cities were in anguish and outrage last year over the brutal murder of George Floyd, who lost his life to our nation’s deeply-ingrained racism that manifested itself through the monstrous actions of former police officer Derek Chauvin.
“TOP joined the millions who rose up and poured into the streets and city halls during the summer’s historic #BlackLivesMatter uprisings to express our collective frustration and rage with the systemic violence directed toward Black people in this country, an abomination that predates its birth.
“Let us never forget that George Floyd should still be alive. While today’s verdict is a demonstration of accountability in action, to achieve true justice in George Floyd’s name would demand that we reimagine public safety in our communities. Our current system — one where we hold our collective breaths in anticipation for whether law enforcement officers will be held to account in a court of law for murdering one of our community members — speaks volumes to where we are at as a society, and how much an overhaul is needed.”
Tamara Neal, a TOP Right2Justice campaign member, added:
“Today is raw and jarring for so many of us. Battling two pandemics at once for months, coronavirus and police brutality, today’s news coming out of Minnesota is as welcome as it is emotionally exhausting.
“Tireless protesting and organizing that spanned the entire country and shook it to its core paved the way for the Floyd family being able to see Derek Chauvin found guilty of his heinous act in that Minneapolis courtroom.
“As we process the magnitude of this verdict, we will continue to use our voices to demand transformative change, and we will not be silenced. We remain as committed as ever in our community organizing fight for justice for all Black and Brown people, true justice that respects our lives, our freedom, our happiness, our full humanity.”
Texas Organizing Project organizes Black and Latino communities in Dallas, Harris and Bexar counties with the goal of transforming Texas into a state where working people of color have the power and representation they deserve. For more information, visit organizetexas.org.
This statement was sent out April 20, 2021.