George Floyd

June 3, 2020

I feel that I need to weigh in on the George Floyd case. The reason is this case bears upon my theme of a limited government that protects individual’s property rights. I am reading about violent protests throughout our “country” and these “protests” are depriving many other people of their property rights. Government has one job and one job only and that is to protect an individual’s right to property. Since contracts are essentially about the transfer of title to properties, they are included. The solution to the government’s failure to do its job is surly not to engage in the same behavior as the government. The behavior of these “protesters” has led to the government failing in its duty to protect property rights again. It appears that law enforcement simply withdrew from the area of violent protests. Here is a brief and probably inadequate summary of the George Floyd case:

“On May 25, 2020, George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, died in Minneapolis, Minnesota after Derek Chauvin, a white police officer, pressed his knee to Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes while Floyd was handcuffed face down in the street;[2][3][4] two other officers further restrained Floyd and another stood by and prevented onlookers from intervening.[5]:6:24[6][7] During the last three minutes, Floyd was motionless and had no pulse,[2][4] but officers made no attempt to revive him.[8]:6:46 Floyd was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.

Floyd was being arrested on suspicion of passing a counterfeit $20 bill at a market.[9] Police said Floyd physically resisted arrest.[10][11] Security camera footage from a nearby business did not show Floyd resisting.[12][13] The criminal complaint stated that, based on body camera footage, Floyd repeatedly said he could not breathe while standing outside the police car, resisted getting in the car and intentionally fell down; he went to the ground face down and, after Chauvin placed his knee, Floyd repeatedly said “I can’t breathe”, “Mama”, and “please”.[2] Several bystanders took videos, all of which were widely circulated and broadcast.[14] While knee-to-neck restraints are allowed in Minnesota under certain circumstances, Chauvin’s usage of the technique has been widely criticized by law enforcement experts as excessive.[15][16][17] At two points, the police officer that was holding Floyd’s legs asked to roll Floyd on his side.[2] All four officers were fired the following day.[18]”

From the little information that I have, it appears that these police officers egregiously deprived Mr. Floyd of his property – his body and they may have taken something that did not belong to them – Mr. Floyd’s life. Unfortunately, what happened to Mr. Floyd is not unique. An innocent man was beaten in the case of Brownback v. King.

Every man and woman on this earth should be a leader, even if they only lead themselves. A leader should do what he or she would like their followers to do. I think what everyone wants is respect for their property. If you WANT PEOPLE TO RESPECT your property, then you sure as hell had better respect other’s property. That means these riots need to stop NOW!

Riots will not solve this problem, but diligent participation by people near to this event in the judicial process hopefully will. I agree there are many things about our “justice system” that are bad, but acting unjustly and taking the property of others will not help the situation. I trust that you have heard, “Two wrongs do not make a right.”

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