On Oct. 14, what would have been George Floyd’s 50th Birthday, President Joe Biden is urging members of Congress to “recommit” to police reform legislation in his honor. Biden signed an executive order banning chokeholds shortly following Floyd’s death at the hands of Derek Chauvin in May 2020.
“George Floyd should be alive. He should be celebrating his 50th birthday with his young daughter Gianna, family, and friends. He deserved so much more,” shared Biden in a press statement.
Floyd was killed in Minneapolis by the former officer, who knelt on him for over nine minutes. The action prompted Floyd to yell “I can’t breathe” repeatedly as footage of the fatal incident sparked Black Lives Matter protests worldwide.
While Floyd’s family received a $27 million settlement in 2021 after filing a wrongful death lawsuit, Chauvin and three other officers involved in the matter were charged and sentenced for their misdeeds. Chauvin was found guilty on all three charges he was on trial for, including second and third-degree murder, as well as second-degree manslaughter. He was sentenced to 252 months in prison.
However, justice for George Floyd and those who have been impacted by police brutality still continues on. As his life and death will never be forgotten, Biden also spoke of his legacy for bringing the systemic issue to the forefront of America’s conscience.
“Today, we join his family to honor his life and legacy. And we remember the tragedy and injustice of his death that sparked one of the largest civil rights movements in our nation’s history and inspired the world, ” expressed the president. “George Floyd’s murder exposed for many what Black and brown communities have long known and experienced — that our nation has never fully lived up to its highest ideal of fair and impartial justice for all under the law.
Biden continued to call on Congress to pass legislation that will support agencies at the state and local level to “make policing safer.” Biden emphasized that he will sign any “meaningful” police reform that will seek to earn the trust of communities across the nation.
“Let us recommit to changing hearts and minds while enacting policies and laws that ensure our nation lives up to its founding idea: that we’re all created equal and deserve to be treated equally throughout our lives,” Biden said in the statement.
As the fight against police brutality remains prevalent, the remembrance of George Floyd brings the advocacy for justice reform to the forefront.
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