I am not in a position to fully understand or speak on behalf of our black community. I do, however, know that anti-black racism exists. There is discrimination, bias, hatred and injustices that have been very violent and immoral. They have brought much harm and even death to our community.
I support many of the Black Lives Matter campaigns’ demands in relation to our current police structures and organizations, and there are some demands that I need to take more time to contemplate and research.
Since the killing of George Floyd by police officers on May 25th of this year, there has been more conversation and more civic action than I have ever seen in my lifetime. I am personally disgusted by Mr. Floyd’s killing in Minneapolis, and the former co-worker officers I keep in contact with locally feel the same. Instances of police brutality must stop – period! Any individual violating the public trust must be charged and held accountable.
I am grateful that despite people having differing views on police roles in our community in general, that nobody I have heard from believes that what ex-officer Chauvin did in taking George Floyd’s life was necessary, moral or legal. Virtually every police agency in North America has condemned the killing of George Floyd. In all my campaigns, my position has been to improve the quality of our lives and reduce the need for calls to police.
This video is the Rogers TV 2019 Kitchener South – Hespeler Federal Election Debate. At the 39 minute mark, I mention that we can not arrest our way out of structural shortcomings. More money to police will not fix addictions, homelessness, poverty or mental health. We need to fund the important services and supports that will require less policing.
I hope that we will all support the heart of what the Black Lives Matter movement is about. We must embrace each other for our cultural and other differences that makes life interesting and full. I hope that we will start to put our money into things that will improve and serve all of our communities well and find new ways to help people with troubles that have fallen through the gaping holes of social inequities and flawed safety nets. Let’s all love and care for each other better.