“I have been silent for too long”

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Peter Crownfield is officially retired but spends most of his time working with students in his role as internship coordinator for the Alliance for Sustainable Communities–Lehigh Valley.

Gadfly — Jason Schiffer (former chief of Bethlehem city PD and now chief of Lehigh U PD) had an excellent commentary on what we’re seeing across the country:

I am so saddened and sickened by the murder of George Floyd at the hands of the police. This type of treatment of another human being can never be justified and can never be accepted. (1/x)

We cannot just go on with our lives now that the criminal responsible for his death has been arrested. That is not enough. As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said in 1967, “a time comes when silence is betrayal.” (2/x)

I have been silent for too long. Either we take action against racist behavior, or we condone it. There can be no middle ground. (3/x)

The former officers who were on scene also had their knees on George’s neck. Every one of them bears the full responsibility of his death. (4/x)

They all had the power and the ability to do the right thing and they chose to condone his murder. It doesn’t matter that their police training taught all of them that restraining a person in that manner is both dangerous and against policy. (5/x)

It should not take a policy to teach the police to treat another human being with dignity and respect. If you are a police officer and have to be trained and taught to respect human life above all things, please turn in your badge. You are the problem. (6/x)

You are the reason for the civil unrest in this country. The people have had enough of being bullied, of being treated with disrespect,and of being murdered by the state. I am so sick of hearing “what about black on black crime?”. There is no comparison. (7/x)

When a police officer uses force against a citizen, that is the force of the state and the people must demand that the state not violate their rights. It is the very least that someone should demand from their government. (8/x)

I have taken some solace in the number of police officials who have been outspoken over the murder of George Floyd. We have been silent far too long. Our “silence has been betrayal.”

No more. (9/9)


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