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April 21, 2021
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I assume by now that you have heard about the verdict of former Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd approximately 10,000 times, and that you have had more than your fill of opinions about it. Even the stories labeled “news” are mostly about 80% opinion.

So I’m going to try something unique. Instead of pontificating, I’m going to tell you the facts, including some you might not have heard, and pass along commentary from people who actually know what they’re talking about. That way, when you inevitably run into someone spouting opinions, you can calmly reply with facts and reason. It won’t do any good, but we have to start somewhere.


POLL:  Do you think the jury reached the correct verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial?


First, the basic facts: the jury returned fairly quickly with a verdict of guilty on all three counts: second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter (I told you I’m not a legal expert so I won’t try to explain how you can be guilty of both intentional and unintentional murder for the same crime.) A guilty verdict was hardly unexpected, given the emotional power of that video of Floyd saying he couldn't breathe, but not necessarily on all counts.

Victoria Taft at PJ Media has a good round-up of other facts about the trial, such as the racial makeup of the jury, and reactions to the verdict, as well as some reasons why there is certain to be an appeal.

Among the many potential grounds for appeal are the denial of a change of venue from Minneapolis (a mistake that became more obvious with each passing day), President Biden pronouncing Chauvin guilty while the trial was ongoing, and the threats of street violence by Rep. Maxine Waters and the leftist mob if the jury didn't convict.

The judge said the jurors had been instructed to disregard media reports, but would any reasonable person not suspect that their verdict might have been influenced by fear if they knew there were threats of violence against a witness, police, the jurors, their families, their homes and businesses and their entire home town?

President Biden reacted to the verdict by presenting a dark vision of America (this is what the media said every time Trump spoke, so I feel that it’s fair to say that – also, in this case, it’s accurate.) He described the nation that elected him as a place of systemic racism where all black and brown people live in fear that the police will kill them or their children as they’re just walking home from the grocery, driving their cars or sleeping in their homes.

Bryan Preston notes that that description of all America more accurately sounds like big cities that have been run for decades by Democrats. Remember, Derek Chauvin was a member of the police force in Minneapolis, one of the most liberal cities in the country with not a single Republican on the city council.

While most of the questions about the rightness or wrongness of the verdict center on whether the jury was intimidated or unduly influenced, legal experts such as Harvard Law Professor Emeritus Alan Dershowitz spoke to Fox News about some costly mistakes the defense made. Among them: not being tough enough in cross-examining the prosecution’s forensic witnesses…making an erroneous statement about the law in the summation that forced the judge to pause the trial and instruct the jury to disregard (not something that impresses a jury)… and deciding not to put Chauvin on the stand. That prevented the prosecution from badgering him into making a costly slip, but it also kept the jury from hearing him defend himself in his own words, which might have humanized him after months of media demonization.

For some definitely biased but entertainingly expressed opinions, Stephen Kruiser looks at the reactions of leftists who got the verdict they demanded but are still angry and unsatisfied and complaining, because of course they are.

(By the way, to lift your spirits, scroll down in that article to the video of the heroic dog caught on a surveillance camera saving his little dog buddy who fell into a swimming pool and couldn’t get out. It might not restore your faith in humanity, but it will reinforce your faith in dogs.)

A reminder: there are three other officers still facing charges in George Floyd’s death. Here’s what’s happening with those cases.

While I hope this verdict will help calm some of the violence and overheated rhetoric for a while at least, and buy some time until the appeals start to begin a rational dialogue to address legitimate issues of police reform, I suspect it will be seen by the radical left as a win that only encourages more demands for mob rule.

Finally, while I understand the pain of George Floyd’s family, and why they held the press conference, I would offer them a suggestion in good faith: If you want to make the case to Americans that we must never tolerate demonizing an ethnic group in ways that lead to the deaths of innocents, or allowing false charges based on race to destroy people’s lives, or letting people who do those things face no accountability, then please reconsider making that argument with Al Sharpton standing next to you.

Exhbit A

Exhibit B

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Comments 1-7 of 7

  • Bob Lopes

    04/29/2021 07:26 PM

    Why wasn't Derek Chauvin also charged with a hate crime? Wasn't this about RACIST America? I still have not seen or heard any evidence that Derek Chauvin killed George Floyd because of the color of his skin (other than what the left and media have said).
    Did I miss something?

  • Cacilia Ida Sheefer

    04/24/2021 10:39 PM

    I also believe that Chauvin acted very wrong, is guilty, although I also don't understand how one can be guilty of voluntary and involuntary manslaughter at the same time.
    But what troubles me is the fact that people gathered outside (mob trying to influence?), what M. Waters and Biden said, and that there were some, or several, jurors who were in their twenties.
    I'm afraid that such young people might be more easily influenced by (what seems to be) the public opinion, or even the public pressure, even threat.

  • Clifford W. Bowers

    04/24/2021 07:04 PM

    Mike I tried to do the survey but it did not connect. The Chauvin trial was a high tech lynching. I followed the trial via Legal Insurrection and Floyd had seriously clogged arteries 70 and 90 percent and super high 211/170 blood pressure. He then decided to resist arrest for passing a counterfeit $20 and swallowed his added stash of fentanyl and meth to avoid it being found. He overexerted stressing his heart in the process and took 10 minutes to die while being legally constrained, with knee on shoulder, waiting for an ambulance called by the cops at the scene twice, because they were concerned for his health, while they were being threatened by the bystanders. Floyd killed himself. The jurors were scared stiff of the rioters and felt no choice but to go with the guilty charge to save their own lives. He cannot get a fair trial anywhere. Horrible!

  • Clare Guglielmo

    04/23/2021 10:35 AM

    George Floyd would not have died had he not been full of drugs and had a heart condition. I believe Derek Chauvin used poor judgement in keeping his knee on Floyd's neck for 9 minutes. Chauvin should possibly have been suspended or barred from being a police officer but not murder. He couldn't possible get a fair trial or verdict in Minneapolis. As a juror I would have found him guilty too as I would fear for my life otherwise. I'm praying for Chauvin.

  • Paula Mclean

    04/22/2021 02:52 PM

    Concerning this, I have a question. After the verdict was read and everyone settled down, Al Sharpton led everyone in a nice prayer. All heads were bowed in reverence in the crowd except one-- Reverend Jesse Jackson. He was looking around, completely ignoring the fact that prayer was being offered. I did not understand that. Shouldn't a so-called Reverend be an example to others and bow during a prayer being offered?

  • Julia K. Miller

    04/21/2021 10:20 PM

    I am not a black skinned person. While all you said might be true, no matter how many drugs were in George Floyd's system, I think that Chauvin made a really bad decision to treat George F the way he did. Honestly, I do believe justice was served correctly.

  • William Proskauer

    04/21/2021 03:37 PM

    Sad state of affairs. I was so overwhelmed with the progressive left use of the race card on this incident that I lost objectivity. Yes, Chauvin is guilty of contributing, causing, and not doing enough to prevent Floyds death. However, I was so consumed that I was hoping for a not guilty verdict. I was wrong. Yes the charges were "too much", but one can't discount the fact that this man Chauvin for whatever reason didn't act correctly and he alone kept Floyd on the ground while the man was in pretty obvious distress. Chauvin has a higher standard to stand to, and he did not.

    It is disgusting that people in political office are capitalizing on this tragedy. It is also very disturbing that the life of a lifetime criminal is being used as the emblem for the Black community by those who have most to gain.