Following the guilty verdict of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd, business leaders, politicians, and sports teams rushed to take a politically correct stance over the outcome of the trial.
Many celebrated the verdict and called for continued action concerning police reforms and social justice. The aftermath of the trial became an opportunity for high-profile individuals to participate in leftist grandstanding via social media and in press conferences.
The jury deliberated for less than 11 hours before rendering their verdict. They found Chauvin guilty on all counts. He was charged with second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter. He could potentially get 75 years behind bars after his conviction. Chauvin will be formally sentenced in eight weeks.
Leading the pack of those who vied to be the first to speak after the verdict came back was the Rev. Al Sharpton who told MSNBC: “We just broke down in tears.” As he stood beside Floyd’s brother, Sharpton proclaimed that “the war’s not over.”
(Video Credit: Fox News)
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg also took advantage of the moment: “Right now I’m thinking of George Floyd, his family and those who knew him,” Zuckerberg posted to Facebook. “I hope this verdict brings some measure of comfort to them, and to everyone who can’t help but see themselves in his story. We stand in solidarity with you, knowing that this is part of a bigger struggle against racism and injustice.”
Blue Shield of California CEO Paul Markovich remarked that the verdict was evidence of the criminal justice system “at work.”
“By no means is that work anywhere near complete,” Markovich bloviated. “But today’s verdict is a meaningful step towards establishing a justice system and a society that truly lives up to our aspirations. At Blue Shield of California, we are committed to doing our part to help make this dream a reality. In the meantime, our thoughts and prayers remain with George Floyd’s family and friends. May they find some peace with this decision.”
General Motors CEO Mary Barra proclaimed that even though Chauvin was found guilty, it could not replace the loss of Floyd or mitigate the grief experienced by his family.
The past several weeks have been a painful and poignant reminder of the need to support reform and condemn injustice. Our thoughts are with the Floyd family as these verdicts will not replace their loss.
— Mary Barra (@mtbarra) April 20, 2021
Salesforce took to Twitter and vowed to further the fight for racial equality and “a more just world.”
Today’s verdict was a defining & important moment.
We recognize this does not make up for so much loss and injustice experienced by the Black community. George Floyd should be alive today. The work continues. We will keep taking action for racial equality and a more just world.
— Salesforce (@salesforce) April 20, 2021
Walgreens Boots Alliance CEO Roz Brewer admonished Americans to learn from the hard lessons experienced over the last year as protesters took to the streets and demanded change: “Even with a verdict now handed down, we must never forget what this past year has taught us, and we must always keep alive the memory of George Floyd, and the countless victims who have suffered similar fates,” Brewer stated.
Microsoft President Brad Smith referred to the verdict as “a step forward” in the fight against discrimination and racism.
“Our nation has a long journey ahead before it establishes the justice and equity that Black Americans deserve,” Smith noted in a statement. “The murder of George Floyd is a tragedy and a crime, and no jury can bring him back to life or reverse the pain and trauma experienced by his family and still felt across the country and around the world. Today’s verdict is a step forward in acknowledging painful truths and for the continued cause of defeating racism and fighting discrimination. Our company remains committed to the continued path ahead.”
Today’s verdict is a step forward in acknowledging painful truths and for the continued cause of defeating racism and fighting discrimination. Our company remains committed to the continued path ahead. https://t.co/G8QyyPzmg1
— Brad Smith (@BradSmi) April 21, 2021
The Minnesota Business Partnership that includes CEOs and executives at more than 100 of the state’s largest companies stated that they hope the verdict will lead to healing, but also cautioned that more needs to be done to change policing in their state.
“This outcome demonstrates that our justice system, while imperfect, can work,” the group declared in a statement. “Achieving true social justice requires measures that go beyond passing and enforcing new laws; our culture, attitudes, and behaviors must also change.”
The National Basketball Association and the National Basketball Players Association issued a joint statement vowing that the league will redouble its efforts to advance change in criminal justice and policing: “George Floyd’s murder was a flashpoint for how we look at race and justice in our country, and we are pleased that justice appears to have been served. But we also recognize that there is much work to be done.”
Other sports leagues also rushed to show their approval of the verdict.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and NBPA executive director Michele Roberts on the Derek Chauvin ruling pic.twitter.com/4E0xDUWkwu
— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) April 20, 2021
MLBPA Executive Director Tony Clark issued the following statement pic.twitter.com/3xmGIM1qem
— MLB Players (@MLB_PLAYERS) April 20, 2021
National Hockey League Statement following today’s verdict in Minneapolis. pic.twitter.com/hODghaQ25H
— NHL (@NHL) April 20, 2021
Amazon.com Inc.’s chief spokesman, Jay Carney, who notably served as press secretary for former President Barack Obama, tweeted a declaration of victory: “Twelve citizens did their duty today, and in doing so they proved that justice can be done in the United States – for everyone.”
Twelve citizens did their duty today, and in doing so they proved that justice can be done in the United States – for everyone. #GeorgeFloyd
— Jay Carney (@JayCarney) April 20, 2021
The prize for the most cringe-worthy take on the verdict undoubtedly goes to the Las Vegas Raiders. They were widely panned on social media for their tweet following the trial outcome.
To all of you running corporate social media accounts: You do not need to try and out-do each other with really cringeworthy George Floyd tweets. https://t.co/6joVVkM3Eq
— Josh Jordan (@NumbersMuncher) April 20, 2021
OH MY GOD NOOOOOOOOOOOOO https://t.co/7mHUTIazlq
— Yashar Ali 🐘 (@yashar) April 20, 2021
Did Nancy Pelosi write this? https://t.co/uASomgFolH
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) April 20, 2021
Liberal politicians also had their say after the verdict, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi who thanked George Floyd for “sacrificing your life for justice.” Followed by President Biden who proclaimed: “Systemic racism is a stain on our nation’s soul.”
George Floyd's family and community deserved for his killer to be held accountable.
Today, they got that accountability.
Always and forever, Black lives matter.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) April 20, 2021
The jury's verdict delivers accountability for Derek Chauvin, but not justice for George Floyd. Real justice for him and too many others can only happen when we build a nation that fundamentally respects the human dignity of every person. https://t.co/JyJFztQbDu
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) April 20, 2021
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