On Tuesday, jurors convicted former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin on all three charges in the death of George Floyd: second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. In response to this verdict, the USCCB issued this statement, highlighting the truth of what the verdict reminds us as Catholics.
"Today, a jury found Derek Chauvin guilty of the murder of George Floyd. As we receive this result, we recall that God is the source of all justice, love, and mercy. The death of George Floyd highlighted and amplified the deep need to see the sacredness in all people, but especially those who have been historically oppressed. Whatever the stage of human life, it not only matters, it is sacred.
Archbishop Rozanski of the Archdiocese of St. Louis issued a statement and a series of tweets acknowledging the jury's finding "is a decision that affirms the dignity of all human life as given to us by God at the moment of our conception, and which remains with us until death."
Bishop McKnight of the Diocese of Jefferson City also issued a statement following the verdict. Let me be clear: All human beings are our sisters and brothers, no matter their race, language or creed. Violence motivated by racism must stop...To take a stance for right and just actions requires something more than declaring "I am not a racist." It requires each of us to look at how we are impacted by the culture in which we live. Let's be honest with ourselves: racism is always and everywhere wrong-an intrinsic evil-and it may exist even where we who are white do not see it. It is too easy and dishonest to be indifferent to racism, to tell ourselves we have nothing to do with the pain and suffering, the terror, which some people who are not white internalize each day.