Minneapolis Police Slowly Kill a Man

The internet is buzzing with breaking news of a man who was supposed to be arrested for forgery but ended up being slowly killed over the span of ten minutes or so. The police officer had his knee on the man's neck for a straight ten minutes as the pinned man complained about not being able to breathe. The officer kept his knee on the man's neck even after he became emotionless, while his partner kept the bystanders at bay. Eric Garner anybody.

There were several people recording the incident and imploring for the officer to take his knee off the man's neck and at least let him breathe. Once the victim became unresponsive, they pled with the officers to check his pulse. Neither office bothered to check for a pulse. Again, the knee remained firmly planted on the neck of his unresponsive body.

The officers were heard mocking the man as he died, telling the audience that this is what happens when you do drugs. It was cold and heartless. I have no words to describe how watching this made me feel. The level of personal distress that I felt was palpable. Ultimately, it was the lack of humanity that punched me in the gut.

They kept on saying that he was human. That did not seem to register to the officers or even phase them. I wondered how did they walk away from this scene after witnessing the callousness towards life. I am sure his criminal record and drug history will be on full display in no time. However, does forgery and alleged drug abuse warrant death? It absolutely does not.

I cannot even say that the officer looked conflicted. He did not. He looked committed to keeping this man down regardless of the consequences. He looked committed to stripping him of his humanity. He did not look as though he feared for his life at all. There was a look of determination. A look that said, he will not be beaten.
We have more possibilities available in each moment than we realize. - Thich Nhat Hanh

We have more possibilities available in each moment than we realize. - Thich Nhat Hanh

He had over ten minutes of time to change course and make a different choice. No one is saying that he should not do his job. He did not do his job. He did not operate within the boundaries of the law. He ignored each moment and each opportunity to make the right choice. It was interesting to watch and have a window into his heartless soul. The look in his eyes told me he was not giving up his authority even if it meant a man's needless death.

Even when you are in the thick of a bad choice, you have the chance to change the course. You can make a better decision no matter how far in the muck you may be. We do not need to keep traveling down the wrong path to a disastrous end.


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