Protests sparked in cities across the United States over the deadly arrest of George Floyd, an unarmed Black Man, who was pinned to the ground by the knee of a white officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Minneapolis has imposed a weekend curfew and community leaders and residents demand the arrest of the three other officers involved.
The Death Of African Americans In Police Custody Could Fuel The Pandemic
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey told that “no honor in burning down your city” as firefighters tackled multiple blazes into Saturday morning. The fire department said that they were responding to 30 fires across the city. A Japanese restaurant, a Wells Fargo bank, and an Office Depot burned for hours, with firefighters again delayed in reaching them because areas were not secure. This nationwide protest could fuel the pandemic. President Donald Trump also postponed the G7 summit until at least September amid coronavirus concerns.
The nationwide protest is now raising fears of new pandemic outbreaks.
“Black people are risking their lives protesting in the middle of a pandemic that’s killing black folks. That’s real. There is no convenient time to fight back,” Melanie Campbell, president of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, said.
Even though COVID-19 has taken a disproportionate number of African Americans, Floyd’s death urged them to take to the streets. “If you were out protesting last night, you probably need to go get a COVID test this week.
There is still a pandemic in America that’s killing black and brown people at higher numbers,” Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms warned. Health experts and doctors expressed their fear about the possibility of a large spread of the virus at protests where social distancing is simply not taking place. They also remarked that there is a chance of getting infected for those who have no symptoms.
Bradley Pollock, chairman of the Department of Public Health Sciences at the University of California, Davis, said that “the cause behind the protest doesn’t prevent them from getting a virus”. Meanwhile, New York Governor, Andrew Cuomo signed in a law giving death benefits to families of state and local government workers of the state’s coronavirus response. In the USA, New York has hit the highest cases.
Donald Trump has postponed the G7 summit and later suggested that it would take place later this summer. “I’m postponing it because I don’t feel as a G7 it probably represents what’s going on in the world. It’s a very outdated group of countries,” Trump said.
According to the data from John Hopkins University, the virus has killed more than 103,000 people in the US and more than 369,000 worldwide. However, in the middle of this, Floyd’s death spurred all African American’s to the street.
The data from Hohn Hopkins University shows that in a country that does not have universal healthcare, the pandemic crisis has affected minorities. Protestors without mask made experts fear an increase in number of COVID-19 cases. “I’m concerned that we had mass gatherings on our streets when we just lifted a stay-at-home order and what that could mean for spikes in coronavirus cases later. I’m so concerned about it that I’m urging everybody to consider their exposure, if they need to isolate from their family members when they go home and if they need to be tested because we have worked very hard to blunt the curve,” Muriel Bowser, the mayor of Washington DC, said in a press conference on Sunday.