George Floyd will never be forgotten. He died for black lives. He died for the ethnic minorities who may be living side by side with whites, but their daily experience is that of a very different America: an America with fewer opportunities. An America with a non-existent healthcare system for the poor and the uninsured. An America where, in 2020, African Americans fear for their own lives even when they are outside doing normal things like jogging or birdwatching. Their lives are at risk for simply existing as an African American, half a century after Martin Luther King.
But George, as was MLK, is a hero for all of us, not just African Americans. He is a hero and a martyr for all those who have felt Supremacy, of any type, by any authority, breathing down their neck, or kneeling down their neck.
George is a symbol of our dysfunctional civilisation. A system which profits from exploiting minorities and third world countries, and plundering the Earth. A system which doesn’t hold back from demonstrating its power at any given time on those who try to resist it. A system that suffocates all of us and almost everyone and everything on the planet, in order to profit and maintain the inequality that it feeds off of. In this pandemic of hate and exploitation, none of us can breathe.
Ethnic minorities can’t breathe
Those feeling terrorised by police can’t breathe
Those who can’t find a job can’t breathe
Those working two jobs and still not able to pay rent can’t breathe
Those working but burning out from stress can’t breathe
The uninsured can’t breathe
Those unlucky to have missed the last available ventilator can’t breathe
Our burning rainforests are suffocating
Our coral reefs are asphyxiating
Life, as we know it on Earth, can’t breathe
George, may your beautiful soul rest in peace.