The tragic murder of Breonna Taylor illuminates the gravest flaws in our law enforcement system. Black people and other people of color are victimized every single day by systemic racism, which is rooted in the white supremacy that has plagued our nation since its very founding. The system as it exists is guilty of failing to provide justice, as Ms. Taylor and so many other Black individuals continue to lose their lives with little or no penalty to those responsible for their deaths.
There is no more solemn public process than a trial by jury. By failing to permit that process to go forward, prosecutors and their grand jury have cast the latest in a long series of dark shadows over Louisville and our entire nation.
In this case, as in so many others, the chain of circumstances that resulted in the death of an innocent woman constitute an indictment of the American criminal justice system and its embedded racism. The flaws in the system are evidenced in the use of “no-knock” warrants, the approval of such warrants by judges, the failure of police to use reasonable procedures, the failure to render medical attention … the list goes on and on.
We must say Breonna Taylor’s name and George Floyd’s name and Trayvon Martin’s name and keep their memories alive as we work to make our nation whole.
This must be part of the mission of every decent person and every decent organization. There can be no peace without justice for all.