The Power Of Witness

Chance phone footage by teenager brings white racist police to book on a world stage
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Horrified but probably not surprised by what she found herself witnessing, teenager Darnella Frazier captured one of the most vital of pieces of Black Lives Matter video. Without its evidence there would have been no justice for George Floyd’s family, no spotlight by the world’s media on the structurally racist organisations that are the American police departments, with their roots in slavery. The arrogance and sense of impunity of the officers is displayed by Chauvin, who stares back at the camera with cold defiance, his hands in his pockets as he casually carries out murder.

The moment when the world held its breath, when the judge read out the verdict, when for the first time a white police officer was found guilty of murder of a Black person and was led away in handcuffs – none would have happened without Darnella’s witness, without her recording.

The meaning of the slogan ‘Defund the police’ must now be clear to all – the whole of the current apparatus of the police departments needs to be demolished.