CNN political commentator Van Jones said Wednesday on “The Lead” that the fact George Floyd was on drugs is irrelevant to the cause of his death.
Anchor Jake Tapper said, “That witness acknowledged that based on his interactions, the witness that worked at the store, based on his interactions with George Floyd he believed that George Floyd was on drugs to a degree, but he was also able to have many conversations with him. This seems to be the prosecution trying to blunt the argument by the defense that drugs in George Floyd’s system accounted for not only his behavior and the reason that the officers had to restrain him but also his death.”
Jones said, “Well, the reality is there are a lot of people in our country that use a lot of stuff. People are smoking. They are drinking. They are popping pills. I mean, we have an addicted society, and yet that’s not a capital crime. Using a controlled substance in the United States is not a death sentence. Many people who are watching have used controlled substances, even within the past week. That’s not a capital crime. There is a standard in our country called excessive force. If you use more force than is necessary to effect an arrest, that’s an excessive use of force. It’s completely inconceivable — listen, he was fighting back. Nobody argues with that. Listen, he was resisting. Nobody argues with that, but once you have him on the ground and he’s handcuffed, he’s under control at that point, he can’t do anything, and do you not have to continue to strangle him. Yes, he was apparently on something, but it was no reason for him to die that day.”
Tapper said, “The jurors can think to themselves the last time I had three martinis. If somebody knelled on my neck for nine and a half minutes and I died would that be because of the martinis or for some other reason.”
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