Protesters across the U.S. are descending on city streets to demand justice and systemic change when it comes to racial injustice at the hands of police officers.
Black males are nearly 2.5 times more likely to be killed by police than their white counterparts in the U.S. George Floyd is one of the most recent men to become part of this statistic and the driving force behind nationwide outrage over the way people of color are treated by law enforcement in America.
Wednesday marked the fifth straight day in San Antonio of racial injustice protests in honor of Floyd, an African American male whose last minutes of life were captured in a now-viral video.
Laying facedown on the ground, Floyd is heard saying "I can't breathe" as a Minneapolis police officer forcibly restrains him with a knee to the neck for more than 8 minutes.
Similar situations have occurred for decades in cities across the U.S., with white officers perpetrating violence against unarmed black men and women.
How common is police brutality in communities of color? Why do police disproportionately victimize black men?
How has the militarization of police departments contributed to the use of force on black Americans? What role does department culture play?
What reforms are needed to achieve racial equity for encounters with law enforcement?
- Kevin Cokley, Ph.D., director of the Institute for Urban Policy Research & Analysis and professor of Educational Psychology and African and African Diaspora Studies at The University of Texas at Austin
- Kevin Robinson, professor in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice and the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions at Arizona State University; retired assistant Phoenix Police chief
- Garnet Coleman, Texas House Representative for District 147
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*This interview was recorded on Thursday, June 4.
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