Yesterday afternoon we learned that Derek Chauvin, the police officer who killed George Floyd, was found guilty on all of the charges that were brought by the prosecutors. We know that many of us were anxiously awaiting this news, and hoping for some measure of accountability.
As much as we are heartened by this verdict, we recognize that there is still much work to be done to address racial inequality, structural violence, and police reform before we can truly celebrate transformative change in the United States. The verdict affirms again the need for the intersectional work we are engaging in as an Institute community.
In an interview for the Toronto Star, our colleague, Professor David Anderson Hooker, framed the need for ongoing work. He said, “The verdict was a relief. And it is also a possible illusion. We’re not yet certain that justice will be a regular occurrence. It could in fact be that the justice that Black and Brown communities are seeking is not available from within the legal system as it is currently configured.”
Today we want to commit ourselves once again to the hard work of naming and transforming systems of oppression and racist ways of being in our own community, on our campus, in our country, and around the world.
John M. Regan, Jr. Director
Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies