ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Black Lives Matter

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The brutal killing of George Floyd allegedly by a police officer has not only led to nationwide protests in the United States (US), but it also had a spillover effect in other cities of the world. The action of the police against the victim seems to be devoid of the procedural reason that shapes and regulates the criminal justice system. It can be designated as excess in reason, and hence is thoughtless. It seems to go beyond the ethical, as it defies the harnessing power of human emotions that has an arresting impact on the racial outrage. It is in this sense that the police action is also heartless. The police action suggests that reason as well as emotion seem to have lost control over the functioning of the police.

The police action seems to be lacking in procedural reason on the following grounds. First, as the images of the incident in the media show, such an action was not triggered either from aggressive or defensive resistance by the victim. Second, one could not hear Floyd casting derogatory or disrespectful comments on the police officer. In fact, he was making a desperate plea that he “can’t breathe.” Third, the police action seems to have resulted from the over-criminalisation of non-violent offences, such as alleged use of fake currency by the victim. However, was the police action really in proportion to the provisions and procedures given in the manual of the criminal justice system of the US? Finally, the police action leading to the instant death of Floyd necessarily throttles the due process of law that would guarantee justice to a victim of police excesses.

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Updated On : 7th Jan, 2021

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