Cries for justice at George Floyd’s funeral | Daily News


 

Cries for justice at George Floyd’s funeral

People watch as the horse drawn hearse containing the remains of George Floyd makes its way to the Houston Memorial Gardens cemetery on Tuesday, in Houston, Texas. - AFP
People watch as the horse drawn hearse containing the remains of George Floyd makes its way to the Houston Memorial Gardens cemetery on Tuesday, in Houston, Texas. - AFP

US: Houston said farewell to George Floyd in a rousing hometown funeral Tuesday, with poignant tributes and calls for justice for the 46-year-old African American whose death "touched the world" and ignited global protests against police brutality and racism.

Politicians, civil rights activists and celebrities joined in sharing memories of the man they called a "gentle giant" after his golden casket was carried into the sanctuary by six pallbearers in masks, as a row of police officers stood at attention and saluted.

Civil rights leader Al Sharpton delivered a fierce eulogy, punctuated by the deep chords of a church organ, in which he accused President Donald Trump of showing indifference over Floyd's death, and sending police a signal of impunity.

"We are fighting wickedness in high places!" Sharpton thundered, uttering the phrase over and over as he accused Trump of "scheming on how you can spin the story rather than how you can achieve justice."

"You sit now trying to figure out how you're going to stop the protest, rather than how you're going to stop the brutality," he said, charging: "The signals that we're sending is that if you are in law enforcement, that the law doesn't apply to you." Acknowledging the presence of the parents of previous victims of police violence -- including Eric Garner, Botham Jean and Michael Brown -- Sharpton said they "know better than anyone else the pain" of the Floyd family.

"Until we know the price for black life is the same as the price for white life, we're going to keep coming back to these situations over and over again," the preacher told The Fountain of Praise Church in southern Houston. Floyd died on May 25 as a white Minneapolis officer pressed a knee into his neck for almost nine minutes, his pleas of "I can't breathe" becoming a rallying cry for protesters.

His death has come to embody fractured relations between communities of color and police in the US and beyond as tens of thousands of protesters have taken to the streets.

The Fountain of Praise was the final stage in a series of ceremonies before Floyd's coffin was conveyed by horse-drawn carriage in the early evening to his final resting place by his mother's grave.

On the way to the Houston Memorial Gardens cemetery, the cortege passed hundreds of well-wishers who chanted Floyd's name. "Rest in power" was scrawled in blue chalk on the road, while one held up a sign saying: "We will never forget."

- AFP


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