Blackout Tuesday

This article was originally published on June 7, 2020.

Did you have a moment of silence on Tuesday, June 2nd?

2020 brought tons of challenges to the world including the novel Coronavirus. Just a few days ago, May 25th, 2020, the world faced another hardship. A 46-year old African-American man had to face discrimination, something that should have been completely eliminated 66 years ago.

George Floyd was handcuffed for using counterfeit money to buy a pack of cigarettes. Shortly later, four police officers were involved in a deliberate attempt of murder. One of those police officers, Derek Chauvin, had his knee placed on Floyd’s neck for about eight to nine minutes. Like anyone, Floyd had difficulty breathing and let out the words: “I can’t breathe.” These three words were the “protest cry” for widespread riots and protests in our country.

From Anchorage, Alaska to Minneapolis, Michigan, the place where the incident took place, fear of another African-American dying for no reason but the color of his/her skin has spread at the same pace as the novel virus. The world shouldn’t have had to deal with another outbreak.

In addition to George Floyd, Ahmed Arbery and Breonna Taylor, were two of the victims subject to inequity. Blackout Tuesday was a day to take a step back from our daily lives and digest what has happened to the country the past few days. Social media was silenced and many companies had a moment of silence for eight minutes, the amount of time an unwanted knee was pressed into George Floyd’s neck.

“Black lives matter,” the theme of Blackout Tuesday, should be understood by each and every citizen of planet Earth. This day emphasized the fact that every African-American person stands as a human and deserves respect. Every person stands as a human and deserves respect. Taking a day out of our lives to understand this was the first step the United States took to express its condolences for many victims.