The death of George Floyd reminds us how easy it is to kill and why law enforcement and the armed forces must remain separate.


The death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on Monday demonstrates how easy it is to end a life. Floyd wasn’t shot with a firearm, as was Philando Castile during a traffic stop four years ago. He wasn’t even tossed in the back of a police van, as was Freddie Gray before that. The weapon was a simple knee to the neck. The video of his arrest is chilling precisely because it’s casual, quotidian almost, just another day on the job for his badge-bearing assailants, a stark contrast to the victim gasping on the ground.

Floyd’s killing has touched off yet another of that most depressing of sequences: a video emerges showing a black man being brutalized by police; his community protests peacefully; those demonstrations are hijacked by rioters and professional anarchists; Molotov cocktails fly; flames erupt. An act of harm by the authorities is followed by a city-wide act of self-harm.


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