San Diego’s elected officials and other local leaders released statements Sunday in response demonstrations against the killing of George Floyd in
Minneapolis, and violence that has erupted across the nation as well as here in San Diego County.
Here’s what some of them have to say:
SUPERVISOR DIANE JACOB
My heart aches. People are upset and angry, and their outrage is justified. Yesterday, as protests picked up in La Mesa, I asked that they be constructive, not destructive. I said we must work together peacefully to address issues of discrimination and bigotry.
But asking for peace is not enough. People want solutions. They deserve solutions. They don’t want promises. They want a meaningful path forward — and they want the nation to dig deep and address the underlying problems of racism and unequal treatment under the law. Obviously, as a white woman, I can’t completely understand the depth of these issues, but I want to do everything I can to help. We must all be part of the solution.
The county Board of Supervisors, at the request of Supervisor Nathan Fletcher, recently agreed to bring back its Human Relations Commission. That’s a step in the right direction, but it’s only one step. More is needed to address systemic, institutional racism.
I want to acknowledge and thank all those in law enforcement who live by the motto, ‘to protect and serve.’ They have a tough job right now. I want to recognize and thank the many La Mesa residents and others who have peacefully protested. I also want to thank the folks who have stepped up today to clean up La Mesa. The immediate outpouring of support is touching, and it sets the tone for how we need to come together to address these issues.
Jacob’s district include La Mesa, which suffered riots and looting Saturday night.
CHANCELLOR LYNN NEAULT
Santee residents and businesses: We are extremely saddened by the recent events that occurred in La Mesa and our deepest condolences go out to our neighbors. We want to assure you, we are monitoring the situation… https://t.co/CEDqYNoYU0
— SanteeFire (@SanteeFire) May 31, 2020
CONGRESSMAN SCOTT PETERS
“The anger over the mistreatment of Black Americans by so many police departments for far too long has built up over decades, and it should come as no surprise that a brutal and cruel murder like that of George Floyd would set that anger aflame. To those protesting today, I want you to know that I hear you. I urge peaceful protests and, in return, I promise to fight for you, and for justice. The Floyd family is in my prayers today, as are all Black Americans hurting and yearning for an America that treats them fairly and justly.
“I have stood with law enforcement my entire career, and I’ll continue to do that because I believe these jobs are vital, the people who them are for the most part good people and we need good young people to sign up for law enforcement careers in the future. But we must demand better of this institution. There is something deeply flawed in our system that has permitted this wrongful treatment and the wrongful deaths of Black Americans to continue. Political leaders can pass new laws, but law enforcement and our entire judicial system must themselves commit to root out the racism that has rendered such mistrust and hatred in our communities. I stand ready to help in any way I can.
“Finally, it has never been more apparent to Americans that we need a President of the United States who can understand and acknowledge our challenges, comfort us in dark times, then unite us and move us forward, together, as a hopeful nation with shared vision and values. It is equally apparent that we don’t have such a President. That makes the challenge for each of us that much greater. Let us rise to meet it.”
Like the protestors at the California Capitol and around the U.S., I am angry and deeply saddened by George Floyd’s death and the deaths of far too many Black Americans. Assembling in shared beliefs is intrinsic to our nation’s values – I implore protestors to do so peacefully.
— Senator Toni Atkins (@SenToniAtkins) May 31, 2020
CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST REV. SHANE HARRIS
“The people rioting and burning buildings down and looting last night in the La Mesa community are not the peaceful protesters fighting for justice. They are people who have jumped into legitimate protests that call out these grave injustices across America. They are taking advantage of this moment and using George Floyd’s death as an opportunity to steal, loot and riot.
These actions are unacceptable and undermines progress that is greatly needed regarding racial justice in America. I urge our local politicians and media to understand exactly who is responsible for looting and rioting and who is responsible for progress and uniting.
George Floyd’s arrest should not have been a death sentence. America let’s stay focused on the real issue here and that is disproportionality runs rampant in black communities that are dying due to COVID-19 and to police violence. These issues must be addressed and we cannot be distracted from the actual goal.”
Harris is the president of the People’s Alliance for Justice.
Justice for #georgefloyd on the Hennepin Ave. bridge in Minneapolis, MN preparing to speak. Demanding justice and that the three other officers who killed George Floyd be charged and arrested. pic.twitter.com/PzcfleFRl6
— Shane Harris (@shaneharrisnow) May 31, 2020
— Staff report
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