Author Topic: Chauvin Trial and verdict  (Read 9062 times)

Norman Teigen

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Chauvin Trial and verdict
« on: April 20, 2021, 05:32:57 PM »
KYRIE ELEISON.  What does it mean?  There are issues here. Lord have mercy.
Norman Teigen

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2021, 05:51:04 PM »
It could be a turning point in how we view the actions of police officers that injure or kill people under their care.
It was interesting to note that members of the law-enforcement community were involved in the prosecution of this incident.
And that means that what will be going on in the streets of Minneapolis tonight will be celebrations rather than “demonstration.“
But there is much more to do in many areas of society and on many levels, to eliminate the scourge of systemic racism or to mitigate its effects.
Retired ELCA pastor. Iowa born. Heading home from Sioux City after three days and a reunion of the East High School class of - can you believe it! - 1959.

D. Engebretson

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2021, 06:03:45 PM »
Since Derek Chauvin was convicted on all three charges for which he was tried, I don't anticipate the level of unrest in Minneapolis that might have occurred if he had been acquitted.  Of course, there will be groups that may try to incite violence and destruction, but I hope that community leaders, especially those within the black community, will work hard to keep the calm.
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Charles Austin

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2021, 06:19:01 PM »
And why would they not? But "calm" is not quite the right word. If this is a victory for more equitable justice, there is reason for some exuberance. Right now, on MSNBC, we have a series of prayers going on.
Retired ELCA pastor. Iowa born. Heading home from Sioux City after three days and a reunion of the East High School class of - can you believe it! - 1959.

D. Engebretson

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2021, 06:49:45 PM »
My concern was that the city would be racked by violent rioting, such as happened quite frequently last summer. I understand the exuberance.  The prayers are good and appropriate.  I just know that there was a heightened concern about physical unrest in the cities requiring the presence of the National Guard, additional law enforcement and protective boarding up of businesses.  I pray that none of the anticipated violence occurs. 
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peter_speckhard

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2021, 07:02:04 PM »
I think there will be an appeal, and Chauvin will have at least a fighting chance of acquittal on the most serious charge.

The big disconnect between the "sides" of this case seems to divide those who see it in individual terms and those who see it in larger scale, group terms. The former tend to have some measure of sympathy for the officer. They also tend to see Floyd as at least partly to blame for his condition, having filled his own lungs with a lethal dose of fentanyl and resisted arrest. The latter tend to have no sympathy for the defendant and to see Floyd as purely an innocent victim. They seem to view the case in terms of the police generally vs. the African-American community generally rather than an individual officer and an individual victim. The trial seemingly wasn't about Chauvin and Floyd but about the historic sociological problems the two men represent. Had the exact same thing happened to a white victim, we probably wouldn't even be aware of the case.

I reject group identity politics and critical race theory, so I find myself sympathizing with a plight of the defendant as well as the victim in different ways. I don't think Chauvin acted with malice or intent to kill, nor do I think it was a racially motivated event. While he no doubt handled it terribly, a charge of excessive use of force and/or police misconduct along with involuntary manslaughter would seem to have fit what happened. Maybe I'm wrong and Chauvin arrived on the scene wanting Floyd dead. Or maybe he knew he was killing him and didn't care. But I doubt it. I think he is being painted as a monster because of the confluence of the horrible optics of the video fitting the perfectly with a sociological agenda. And I'm fairly confident I would think the same thing whether Floyd was a member of my congregation, or Chauvin, or both for that matter.   

 

Dave Benke

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2021, 07:16:24 PM »
I believe this was an actual "moment of inflection" in our country.  The prayer offered by Rev. Sharpton and the prayers offered by others were not of celebration but of accountability having taken place.  I don't foresee a lighter sentence down the road for Chauvin. 

In terms of violence, the last major moment of ugly violence was perpetrated on January 6 against the government of the United States by people many of whom were either militia or with military/police experience carrying out acts of sedition.  The question I have is not about urban black/brown violence in the cities but of how this affects those groups.

There was an hour-long ESPN show just now on the response of athletes, black/brown/white, at the professional level, to the events of the last months.  All of the leagues have come out very strongly in this time-frame against systemic racism from the top level down to the players; again, a moment of inflection.

I'm guessing there will be statements from the national leadership level of Lutheran and really all denominations.  However, what means something to the Church at a deeper level, I think, is what happens at the local level.  We have - against the grain in the rest of my pastoral experience - been pledging allegiance to the flag before each service for the past fourteen months, Sundays and Wednesdays.  "One nation, under God, with liberty and justice for all."   And then we have come to the altar as one for the Lord's Meal, to be strengthened for our personal and communal journey.  Both realms - left and right - belong to God, as do we.

Dave Benke

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2021, 07:27:03 PM »
Peter writes:
The big disconnect between the "sides" of this case seems to divide those who see it in individual terms and those who see it in larger scale, group terms.
I comment:
Then you aren't listening to the members of the Floyd family and his friends. He is the individual. The fact that others - such as you - also see it as "identity politics" is quite a different matter.

Peter:
The former tend to have some measure of sympathy for the officer. They also tend to see Floyd as at least partly to blame for his condition, having filled his own lungs with a lethal dose of fentanyl and resisted arrest. The latter tend to have no sympathy for the defendant and to see Floyd as purely an innocent victim.
Me:
Are you suggesting that it's ok to kneel on a physically impaired person? No one is totally "innocent," but at the time that deadly force was applied to someone only suspected of a relatively minor offense. Your remark comes close to the comments excusing rape or attempted rape because a woman dressed a certain way.

Peter:
They seem to view the case in terms of the police generally vs. the African-American community generally rather than an individual officer and an individual victim. The trial seemingly wasn't about Chauvin and Floyd but about the historic sociological problems the two men represent.
Me:
Didn't watch much of the trial, did you?

Peter:
Had the exact same thing happened to a white victim, we probably wouldn't even be aware of the case.
Me:
As has been shown time again, something like that would probably never happen to a white person.

Peter:
I reject group identity politics and critical race theory, so I find myself sympathizing with a plight of the defendant as well as the victim in different ways. I don't think Chauvin acted with malice or intent to kill, nor do I think it was a racially motivated event.
Me:
Read the charges, read the law. With some of the charges "acting with malice or intent to kill" or motivated by race is not necessary. But the case upheld in court indicates that the officer's intent was indeed malicious.

Peter:
While he no doubt handled it terribly, a charge of excessive use of force and/or police misconduct along with involuntary manslaughter would seem to have fit what happened. Maybe I'm wrong and Chauvin arrived on the scene wanting Floyd dead. Or maybe he knew he was killing him and didn't care. But I doubt it.
Me:
You doubt it because you reject the existence of systematic racism, especially in law enforcement, present in our society. The prosecution made the case that he didn't care what was happening to the man under his knee.

Peter:
I think he is being painted as a monster because of the confluence of the horrible optics of the video fitting the perfectly with a sociological agenda.
Me:
Whew. At least you agree that it looked bad. Chauvin was convicted of causing Floyd's death "while committing or attempting to commit a related felony, in this case third-degree assault." That's sometimes called "felony murder."
And the officer was convicted of third-degree murder, where the jury believed the evidence showed him causing death during an act that was "eminently dangerous to others and evincing a depraved mind, without regard for human life."
The officer was a trained, veteran policeman who supposedly knew something about the use of force, even the felonious used of force and what constituted murder and lack of "regard for human life."
So in this incident, even if he had recently petted a puppy or helped an old lady across the street, the officer was indeed a monster.
Retired ELCA pastor. Iowa born. Heading home from Sioux City after three days and a reunion of the East High School class of - can you believe it! - 1959.

Dan Fienen

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2021, 07:49:14 PM »
As I followed the trial in the news, it seemed to me that the verdict as reached was warranted by the evidence. What motivated Chauvin to act as he did was not clear to me. Whatever his motivation, it seems apparent that Chauvin continued to apply force to Floyd after he was restrained.


A number of commentators, not just Peter, tried to make this America on trial.
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peter_speckhard

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2021, 08:43:47 PM »
Peter writes:
The big disconnect between the "sides" of this case seems to divide those who see it in individual terms and those who see it in larger scale, group terms.
I comment:
Then you aren't listening to the members of the Floyd family and his friends. He is the individual. The fact that others - such as you - also see it as "identity politics" is quite a different matter.

Peter:
The former tend to have some measure of sympathy for the officer. They also tend to see Floyd as at least partly to blame for his condition, having filled his own lungs with a lethal dose of fentanyl and resisted arrest. The latter tend to have no sympathy for the defendant and to see Floyd as purely an innocent victim.
Me:
Are you suggesting that it's ok to kneel on a physically impaired person? No one is totally "innocent," but at the time that deadly force was applied to someone only suspected of a relatively minor offense. Your remark comes close to the comments excusing rape or attempted rape because a woman dressed a certain way.

Peter:
They seem to view the case in terms of the police generally vs. the African-American community generally rather than an individual officer and an individual victim. The trial seemingly wasn't about Chauvin and Floyd but about the historic sociological problems the two men represent.
Me:
Didn't watch much of the trial, did you?

Peter:
Had the exact same thing happened to a white victim, we probably wouldn't even be aware of the case.
Me:
As has been shown time again, something like that would probably never happen to a white person.

Peter:
I reject group identity politics and critical race theory, so I find myself sympathizing with a plight of the defendant as well as the victim in different ways. I don't think Chauvin acted with malice or intent to kill, nor do I think it was a racially motivated event.
Me:
Read the charges, read the law. With some of the charges "acting with malice or intent to kill" or motivated by race is not necessary. But the case upheld in court indicates that the officer's intent was indeed malicious.

Peter:
While he no doubt handled it terribly, a charge of excessive use of force and/or police misconduct along with involuntary manslaughter would seem to have fit what happened. Maybe I'm wrong and Chauvin arrived on the scene wanting Floyd dead. Or maybe he knew he was killing him and didn't care. But I doubt it.
Me:
You doubt it because you reject the existence of systematic racism, especially in law enforcement, present in our society. The prosecution made the case that he didn't care what was happening to the man under his knee.

Peter:
I think he is being painted as a monster because of the confluence of the horrible optics of the video fitting the perfectly with a sociological agenda.
Me:
Whew. At least you agree that it looked bad. Chauvin was convicted of causing Floyd's death "while committing or attempting to commit a related felony, in this case third-degree assault." That's sometimes called "felony murder."
And the officer was convicted of third-degree murder, where the jury believed the evidence showed him causing death during an act that was "eminently dangerous to others and evincing a depraved mind, without regard for human life."
The officer was a trained, veteran policeman who supposedly knew something about the use of force, even the felonious used of force and what constituted murder and lack of "regard for human life."
So in this incident, even if he had recently petted a puppy or helped an old lady across the street, the officer was indeed a monster.
We disagree at the basic level of assumptions. "More equitable justice" was neither plaintiff nor defendant here. Your whole take on it has been that he was clearly guilty and the only question was whether the system was too racist to convict him. In a way, this parallels the debate of "death from Covid" vs. "death with Covid." Floyd had Covid at the time. He died with it, not from it, at least not for the most part. He also had an officer kneeling on him (not cutting off his windpipe) at the time. He died with that, too, not from it, at least not for the most part. The experts refused to answer the question of whether Floyd would have died anyone without any police action taken on the grounds that they don't deal in what-ifs. But they did admit that if they'd found Floyd later, the lack of any signs of injury in his neck/throat coupled with the lethal level of fentanyl in his lungs would have made it a fairly straightforward finding of overdose as the cause of death. As it is, the adrenaline that comes from resisting arrest coupled with his heart condition and massive amounts of drugs in his system likely would have killed him even if Chauvin had left him in the back seat of the car. I can't prove it, but I can say that there is at least reasonable doubt that Chauvin killed Floyd.

It comes far too easily to you to think of people as depraved monsters. I don't know Chauvin or much about him, but I very much doubt he is a monster of depraved heart. You and the jury disagree. He'll likely be in jail a long time. I think far lesser charges would have better reflected the real crime of misconduct/brutality. 
« Last Edit: April 20, 2021, 08:57:13 PM by peter_speckhard »

Tom Eckstein

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2021, 09:48:52 PM »
I think there will be an appeal, and Chauvin will have at least a fighting chance of acquittal on the most serious charge.

The big disconnect between the "sides" of this case seems to divide those who see it in individual terms and those who see it in larger scale, group terms. The former tend to have some measure of sympathy for the officer. They also tend to see Floyd as at least partly to blame for his condition, having filled his own lungs with a lethal dose of fentanyl and resisted arrest. The latter tend to have no sympathy for the defendant and to see Floyd as purely an innocent victim. They seem to view the case in terms of the police generally vs. the African-American community generally rather than an individual officer and an individual victim. The trial seemingly wasn't about Chauvin and Floyd but about the historic sociological problems the two men represent. Had the exact same thing happened to a white victim, we probably wouldn't even be aware of the case.

I reject group identity politics and critical race theory, so I find myself sympathizing with a plight of the defendant as well as the victim in different ways. I don't think Chauvin acted with malice or intent to kill, nor do I think it was a racially motivated event. While he no doubt handled it terribly, a charge of excessive use of force and/or police misconduct along with involuntary manslaughter would seem to have fit what happened. Maybe I'm wrong and Chauvin arrived on the scene wanting Floyd dead. Or maybe he knew he was killing him and didn't care. But I doubt it. I think he is being painted as a monster because of the confluence of the horrible optics of the video fitting the perfectly with a sociological agenda. And I'm fairly confident I would think the same thing whether Floyd was a member of my congregation, or Chauvin, or both for that matter.   

 

Peter, above you wrote:  "The trial seemingly wasn't about Chauvin and Floyd but about the historic sociological problems the two men represent. Had the exact same thing happened to a white victim, we probably wouldn't even be aware of the case."

Your words are pure wisdom!
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Tom Eckstein

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2021, 09:57:27 PM »
Peter writes:
The big disconnect between the "sides" of this case seems to divide those who see it in individual terms and those who see it in larger scale, group terms.
I comment:
Then you aren't listening to the members of the Floyd family and his friends. He is the individual. The fact that others - such as you - also see it as "identity politics" is quite a different matter.

Peter:
The former tend to have some measure of sympathy for the officer. They also tend to see Floyd as at least partly to blame for his condition, having filled his own lungs with a lethal dose of fentanyl and resisted arrest. The latter tend to have no sympathy for the defendant and to see Floyd as purely an innocent victim.
Me:
Are you suggesting that it's ok to kneel on a physically impaired person? No one is totally "innocent," but at the time that deadly force was applied to someone only suspected of a relatively minor offense. Your remark comes close to the comments excusing rape or attempted rape because a woman dressed a certain way.

Peter:
They seem to view the case in terms of the police generally vs. the African-American community generally rather than an individual officer and an individual victim. The trial seemingly wasn't about Chauvin and Floyd but about the historic sociological problems the two men represent.
Me:
Didn't watch much of the trial, did you?

Peter:
Had the exact same thing happened to a white victim, we probably wouldn't even be aware of the case.
Me:
As has been shown time again, something like that would probably never happen to a white person.

Peter:
I reject group identity politics and critical race theory, so I find myself sympathizing with a plight of the defendant as well as the victim in different ways. I don't think Chauvin acted with malice or intent to kill, nor do I think it was a racially motivated event.
Me:
Read the charges, read the law. With some of the charges "acting with malice or intent to kill" or motivated by race is not necessary. But the case upheld in court indicates that the officer's intent was indeed malicious.

Peter:
While he no doubt handled it terribly, a charge of excessive use of force and/or police misconduct along with involuntary manslaughter would seem to have fit what happened. Maybe I'm wrong and Chauvin arrived on the scene wanting Floyd dead. Or maybe he knew he was killing him and didn't care. But I doubt it.
Me:
You doubt it because you reject the existence of systematic racism, especially in law enforcement, present in our society. The prosecution made the case that he didn't care what was happening to the man under his knee.

Peter:
I think he is being painted as a monster because of the confluence of the horrible optics of the video fitting the perfectly with a sociological agenda.
Me:
Whew. At least you agree that it looked bad. Chauvin was convicted of causing Floyd's death "while committing or attempting to commit a related felony, in this case third-degree assault." That's sometimes called "felony murder."
And the officer was convicted of third-degree murder, where the jury believed the evidence showed him causing death during an act that was "eminently dangerous to others and evincing a depraved mind, without regard for human life."
The officer was a trained, veteran policeman who supposedly knew something about the use of force, even the felonious used of force and what constituted murder and lack of "regard for human life."
So in this incident, even if he had recently petted a puppy or helped an old lady across the street, the officer was indeed a monster.

Charles writes above:

Peter:
Had the exact same thing happened to a white victim, we probably wouldn't even be aware of the case.
Me:
As has been shown time again, something like that would probably never happen to a white person.


Charles, check the stats on the link below and you will see that "white people" are indeed killed by police all the time.  We just don't hear about it because such deaths are not "racially motivated."  Of course, I see no evidence that George Floyd's death, athough tragic, was "racially motivated."

https://www.statista.com/statistics/585152/people-shot-to-death-by-us-police-by-race/?fbclid=IwAR3fcXhN7qkQ7IHLfjG6BhXdRx3-BXRFMBf6g7fmU7mWYX88RrxWHflqNJI
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Robert Johnson

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #12 on: April 20, 2021, 10:07:22 PM »
KYRIE ELEISON.  What does it mean?  There are issues here. Lord have mercy.

It means the jurors were afraid for their safety and their homes and their families.

Charles Austin

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2021, 10:39:10 PM »
Robert Johnson has just displayed his massive and miraculous ability to look into the minds of 12 people he has never met, those people facing a situation he is far from and unable to understand.
OK, "law and order" people; what's the deal here?
There was an arrest, a trial, a conviction. Do we respect that?
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peter_speckhard

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Re: Chauvin Trial and verdict
« Reply #14 on: April 20, 2021, 11:48:05 PM »
Robert Johnson has just displayed his massive and miraculous ability to look into the minds of 12 people he has never met, those people facing a situation he is far from and unable to understand.
OK, "law and order" people; what's the deal here?
There was an arrest, a trial, a conviction. Do we respect that?
Of course we respect it. That doesn't mean we agree with every facet of it or think it couldn't be wrong in this or that case. You still respect SCOTUS rulings despite thinking they got it wrong in Citizens United. Or am I wrong about that?

If things had gone differently today, would you post, "OK, social justice people; what's the deal here? There was an arrest, a trail, an acquittal. Do we respect that?" The answer would be no you wouldn't. You and your ilk would right now be defending the destruction of Twin Cities. You cannot reasonably demand that people respect the system that produced a conviction while simultaneously claiming that said system is intrinsically racist and has white supremacy woven into its very fabric. We respect the verdict precisely because it was not produced by a systemically flawed system. It is a system that falls prey to human mistakes, much like law enforcement. Not systemically flawed, but not infallible or flawless, either.