People have been asking, “Dov, why are you marching for George Floyd amidst all this rioting and looting?”
Here’s my answer. It’s not a political march, it’s not affiliated with BLM or any other organization. It’s about the Jewish community being present in public to send a message to the Floyd family that his life was valued and important to more people than just his family, because if his life can be taken so callously, so cheaply, then the very fabric of our society is in grave danger. That’s why we titled the march “If he can’t breathe, we can’t be silent.”
The Jewish community knows what it’s like to be targeted for violence and hate and it knows how it feels to have support from non-Jews in those trying times. A man’s life was taken and simply to uphold the preciousness of life we are gathering in solidarity. Because any of us can understand what it means for the victim’s family to see love and support for them in their hour of need.
This is not anti-police, to the contrary, everyone knows I support and respect the police, as the large majority are not only good people but they make the ultimate sacrifice every day they wear the uniform. That doesn’t mean individual cops can’t do horrible things, and when they do they must face justice. But justice is an after the fact remedy that does very little to reduce the pain of losing a loved one. We have to do better as a society so that we eliminate all instances of police brutality and abuses of power against any vulnerable person.
Police will be on hand, it will be safe and peaceful, everyone will be required to wear masks and keep a safe minimum distance and in the end those that gather will know that they sent an important message to a broken-hearted family despite all of the naysayers. Hope to see you there.