Let’s be clear: It hasn’t happened hereabouts, but it has happened often enough elsewhere to threaten the very existence of this country as we know it. White policemen beating and killing black men without sufficient cause is systematic of the greater problem: ours is a racist nation.
Those who rage against the system, those who want to tear it down, are not the thugs our president wants us to believe they are. The anger, the frustration, the injustice, has boiled over. What we are seeing at night in the cities is revolution, not unlike what has happened to other corrupt regimes throughout history.
Yet the violence, usually directed against not the perpetrators but other innocent people — people like George Floyd — drives a deeper wedge between Americans, and takes the dangerous position that all law enforcement personnel are somehow culpable for the relative few who, armed with a uniform and a badge, would prey on those who can’t defend themselves.
Certainly, no man or woman should be allowed in the law enforcement business without more thorough psychological testing, and no physical response allowable beyond what meets the crime. We need our clergy to take a leading role in helping divergent sides communicate and find common ground.
Charging a police precinct or occupying a government building risks anarchy. Looting is to take advantage of a horrible situation.
It is time for our best and brightest to take their places in leadership roles held far too long by those who champion the status quo for all the wrong reasons. Tear down the proverbial walls and build our cities back up with fresh perspectives and ideals.