We are encouraged in seeing sincere and peaceful protests in local communities this week. The death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, intertwined with the long history of racism and police brutality against people of color in this country, cannot be ignored.
It is essential to note that the majority of police officers should not be lumped in with the inept and vicious actions of the few. Equally important—those who committed criminal acts in the aftermath of recent protests are outliers in largely peaceful demonstrations.
The bottom line is that the status quo is not good enough. Policing is a profoundly challenging duty, but our law enforcement institutions need reform and must be held accountable. Despite progress on civil rights, bigotry and biases continue to foil “justice for all.”
We must look beyond the headlines. We must focus not on the savagery of the riots, but on the need to change society for the better. Otherwise, we are doomed to repeat the scenes that played out across the country this week.
This is about more than George Floyd. His death is the latest tipping point in a long history of inequality.
Millions of protesters are marching and raising signs because they see real action as essential. As Ibram X. Kendi writes in “How to Be an Antiracist,” “One either allows racial inequities to persevere, as a racist, or confronts racial inequities, as an antiracist. There is no in-between safe space of ‘not racist.’”
We in northwest Wisconsin—whatever our demographics may be—must be active in promoting equity for all citizens. We all must take action against racism and inequality at all times.
Editorials are the views of the newspaper as determined by The Chronotype’s editorial staff. All editorials are written by one or more staff writers, which include Ryan Urban, Ruth Erickson, Dave Greschner and Ryan OConnell.