THE GEORGE FLOYD EFFECT
Could America be on the verge of having its first woman and nonwhite president?
As many people are wont to do every year’s-end, I too welcomed the opportu-nity to gather at a certain venue to “Ring out the old and bring in the new.”
The place was jumping that night: eatables ample, liquids flowing, music jam-ming and people bouncing… All the requisite ingredients and more making for a night of joviality.
And when the clock struck midnight it was the usual… with people wishing friends and unfamiliars “Happy New year.” One even feeling good and positive about 2020, with a sort of Prince 1999-going-into 2000 vibe…
Little did anyone think or even know about the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic, how it would tangibly and personally impact lives… and life as we know it.
The pandemic onslaught breathed life into the song It’s The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) by 80s group R.E.M.
The world hasn’t ended, neither has the pandemic cliché: “We’re all in it to-gether…”
True, but as it continues to play out. As to pull out that now cliched we’re….
So here we are, over a half year into 2020, with many plans, hopes and dreams for 2020, suddenly shattered by a five months-old deadly pandemic many, in-cluding scientific minds are still trying to figure out and get a handle on.
Granted, phenomena are unpredictable, so we’re all left to our personal and do-mestic devices… to ride out the pandemic. In the meantime, given all the infor-mation at our disposal we have to figure out how we’re going to make it through this, what seems like a pandemic season or storm.
So far so good, for those of us who have been lucky or fortunate enough to be waking up to another day. Good thing; but hold tight, and remain vigilant. Be-cause in a Thursday, August 13 statement World Health Organization (WHO) head honcho Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, “The pandemic has changed every aspect of life…”
But that African man, according to a recent article, “has weathered bitter criti-cism – most notably from the U.S. – of his handling of the pandemic, which the WHO declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) on 30 January…”
That he has been strongly criticized — one can say particularly by the political (and pseudo medical) scientist temporarily housed in the White House is no surprise. Not only is Ghebreyesus an African holding such an important international position he’s also Black.
So, from a COVID-19 standpoint many people contend, “The world has changed is changing…”
That was evident when, on U.S. Memorial Day of this year, the world witnessed blatant American-style racial hatred when George Floyd, another name now seeded in the an-nals of America’s racist history was boldly asphyxiated (not shot and killed) in prover-bial real time.
It not only gave credence to, but also highlighted, the reality that there’re more ways that one for police to kill a Black man.
Over the past couple weeks additional (police camera) evidence have been released of the last few minutes of Floyd’s life.
All hell broke lose as generations of pent-up anger and social frustrations could no longer be contained and came to the fore. And the world became privy to expressions of the anger and frustration vis-a-vis the conditions America’s Black people were forced to tolerate for generations…
Well, as the world now knows that most horrific racist act in America was a catalyst for change ‘real’ change in white America’s (Americans’) relationship… (coming to terms) with its centuries-old history of racial oppression and hatred of the slaves who were forcibly imported to build the nation; pay cheques are still outstanding.
And the great-grandchildren of the slaves would now agree that the I-owe-you-tab has eclipsed “forty acres and a mule.”
Ongoing protests notwithstanding, white police are continuing their pattern of over-policing Black people of all genders, and in several recent cases children. In part push back against Black people and demands for police defunding, to be made more ac-countable when disproportionate force is employed against Black folk…
Make no mistake, there’s change in the air. There’s something to be said about the George Floyd Effect. And it’s happening in tangible and intangible… subtle ways.
Most notable among them is the bombshell announcement on Tuesday, August 11, when presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden, finally unwrapped his well kept secret by revealing who his vice presidential running mate will be in the 2020 U.S. federal elections, California Senator Kamala Harris.
Recall her performance when she was in the presidential race (during a packed stage of presidential candidate hopefuls debate) and took the former Vice President to task dur-ing the Democratic presidential debate, ostensibly for what she perceived to be his op-position to busing as a means of desegregating American schools.
The Vice Presidential candidate said she was personally impacted by his stance (then).
“There was a little girl in California who was part of the second class to integrate her public schools and she was bused to school every day. That little girl was me,” Harris said that night.
The fence now mended — renamed Biden-Harris — that little girl is now on the way to possible becoming America’s first non-white Vice President. And with continuing talk of when will America have its first female president, that AfricAsian-American Vice Presi-dent, if the political duo is victorious in the November 3 federal elections might be the ticket.