I’ll start by admitting something important: I haven’t watched the video in its entirety. I don’t deal well with watching death; this is especially true when one human dies at the hand of another.
Based on the segment I have seen (from the last moment he was on his feet to the moment they had him on his abdomen) it appears that Garner was murdered.
Some would waffle through a lot of technicalities to arrive at the opposite conclusion. Some will discuss “the community” and “sensitive historical and racial issues”. Some will try to avoid a comparison between this killing and Mike Brown’s.
Racially motivated or not, what happened to Eric Garner was murder. And that’s personal and universal before it becomes racial.
Some will justify what happened and will rationalize why the system hasn’t taken steps towards tangible justice. All that means is that the system killed him and is now reasoning its way past the guilt. The New York Police Department murdered him, and then pontificated on why it just had to.
But common sense says that however you spin it, what happened to Eric Garner was murder.
And if a justice system can justify that for one person, then it can justify it for many.
Garner is going to be the first of many.
Halfway across the world there is a country, and for all the good it’s brought the world, it’s a country that kills innocent people.
America. The light of the world.