BLM UK Warns Minneapolis Police Dept ‘Would Not Have Survived’ If Chauvin Acquitted

Minneapolis
CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images

Black Lives Matter UK has warned that the Minneapolis Police Department “would not have survived” if former police officer Derek Chauvin had not been convicted for the murder of George Floyd in the United States.

“The Minneapolis Police Department would not have survived if the verdict had gone any other way. The American establishment did not want another summer of Black rebellion,” said Malcolm Baker, a spokesman for Black Lives Matter UK, in comments reported by the i, in reference to former police officer Derek Chauvin’s conviction for second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter in connection with the death of George Floyd.

While the history of race relations in the United Kingdom and the United States is quite different, BLM UK maintains that “the UK is not innocent” — a signature rallying cry of Britain-based activists — and insists that “Police violence is not U.S. specific.”

“Here in Britain, on average one person a week has died in police custody, prisons or borders since 1990,” Baker claimed to the i, referring to figures which encompass deceased persons of all ethnic backgrounds, including native white Britons.

BLM UK notes “there have been 1500+ deaths in custody since 1990 and 0 convictions” as an issue, yet also rejects the importance of actually convicting individuals. As Baker says, attacking institutions themselves is the actual goal as “convicting the individuals responsible will not end this violence”.

“The Black Lives Matter movement is putting the whole system on trial, and until we replace state violence with community-led safety and care, we will continue to see those in power abusing Black and working-class communities,” Baker vowed.

What “community-led safety and care” would entail is not entirely clear, but it is unlikely that it would involve anything resembling modern police forces, judging by the messaging on the verified Twitter account for Black Lives Matter UK.

This features a number of digital posters calling to “DEFUND THE POLICE AND INVEST IN COMMUNITIES” and declaring that “‘BAD APPLES’ COME FROM ROTTEN TREES”, for example.

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