MINNEAPOLIS — The Rev. Al Sharpton says George Floyd’s story has been the story of black people in America, and that he died not from common health conditions, but from a malfunction of the criminal justice system.
Watch Rev. Sharpton’s remarks in the player above.
Sharpton spoke Thursday at a memorial service for Floyd in Minneapolis, the first of six services for Floyd in three cities. Floyd died May 25 after a white Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck, ignoring the African American man’s pleas that he couldn’t breathe. The officer stayed there even after Floyd stopped moving.
Sharpton says the reason black people couldn’t be who they dreamed of being is because “you had your knee on our necks.” He added: “Get your knee off of our necks!”
He also commented about the protests that have occurred across the country and the world since Floyd’s death, saying that this time is different. Sharpton said he saw white people outnumbering black people in some marches and calling for justice.
Sharpton also called out President Donald Trump for walking from the White House across the street as protests were going on in Washington so he could pose with a bible.
“We cannot use bibles as a prop,” Sharpton said. “For those that have agendas that are not about justice, this family will not let you use George as a prop.”