AASR Statement on the Death of Mr. George P. Floyd
The members of the African Association for the Study of Religions around the world received
the news of the death of Mr. George P. Floyd with sadness and watched in horror the video of a
police officer kneeling with both legs and his hands in his pocket as the already handcuffed Mr.
Floyd laid on the ground and complained that he could not breathe. The 8 minutes and 46
seconds captured on the video show to many viewers killing in slow, painful motion in a process
that despised and took away the humanity of Mr. Floyd, but ultimately his life.
The killing of Mr. Floyed reminds the world of the killing of Emmett Till, 1955
The brutal beatings of Mr. Rodney King and the acquittal of the officers involved in 1992 and
the riots that was sparked by that injustice,
The murder of James Byrd Jr. in Jasper Texas in 1998,
The killing of Eric Garner in 2014,
The Killing of Michael Brown also in 2014, and the rise of the Black Life Matter Movement
The killing of Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia
The killing of Breonna Taylor in how own house in Louisville
And the Shooting of Tony McDade in Tallahassee.
Add to the above the many other brutal killings of black men and women that were not captured
on camera or publicized. These killings and the national and international response to them
underscore the importance and significance of the Black Lives Matter movement. It has called
attention to the brutalities meted on Blacks nowadays which demonstrate the obscenity of life
along the color line. They underscore the urgency of addressing the brutalities Blacks have
experienced since they were forcefully brought to the United States from 1619. Today, the world
stands with Blacks in the United States and call on Congress to pass and enforce legislation that
will ensure that Blacks receive equal treatment before the law as guaranteed by the Constitution
of the United States of America.
The African Association for the Study of Religions will continue to carry research and analysis
that exposes all forms of discrimination and injustice around the world and call on all other
institutions to study and fight discrimination to ensure that all people live their lives with dignity
and freedom. We call on the leaders of the United States of America to open a national dialogue
on race that would create the conditions for national reconciliation.
Elias Kifon Bongmba