George Floyd: One year later

One year ago, after we all witnessed the tragic death of George Floyd, the streets of cities all over the world were filled with people demanding justice and police reform. The world said “No more” but what has happened since then?

Have a listen to my tribute on Smooth Radio to George Floyd on the one year anniversary of his tragic passing:

There have been many deaths by the hands of authorities in my lifetime (especially in the USA), but the murder of George Floyd sparked a global wave of emotion that has not been seen before.

After the world saw those horrible images of police brutality and a man killed after begging for his life, the people demanded change. 

Protestors toppled a statue honouring the slave trader Edward Colston in Bristol, sparking counter protests to protect British monuments. During one of those protests, an image of one man changed everything.

Patrick Hutchinson lifted a right wing protester over his shoulder and physically carried him to safety. The image taken of that moment went viral before he even got home from the protest. I’m so grateful I had the privilege of interviewing this amazing man and his friends – if you’ve not seen our Instagram Live it’s definitely worth a watch. 

And as a result of those Black Lives Matter protests in the UK, nearly 70 streets, buildings, schools, statues, plaques and other memorials are being changed. 

It’s all about conversations. 

Never have I ever had so many private and public conversations with family and friends about racism and how to address it.

Racism has been at the forefront of many of our minds this last year and some of the conversations were HARD. Piers Morgan and his constant attacks on Meghan Markle have been in the forefront of our news this entire year. Meghan’s race being talked about non-stop by the press caused Harry and Meghan to leave the royal family and head for the US.

Sharon Osbourne and her attack on Sheryl Underwood on The Talk was also so difficult for many of us to watch. Black women don’t have the luxury of yelling at someone. The consequences are much different.  

And if I’m being honest… it’s exhausting. The defending. Having to have the same conversations over and over and over again. Even though it’s a VERY good thing to have these discussions, it was still so very hard this year. I went from happy to sad and every emotion this entire year. It’s more than overwhelming. To see the loss of black lives and the evidence of systemic racism that we’re still fighting is gut-wrenching.

So yes, some things have changed but not nearly enough. Small changes can lead to big ones… if we stick together. In order for us to keep making changes in the world we have to keep having these conversations. I just wish it didn’t always come as a reaction to such horrible tragedies.