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The Explainer: What does the George Floyd killing mean for America?

On this week’s episode, Glenn Burkins joins us from North Carolina to talk about the impact of the protests.

Image: PA Images

ON 25 MAY, a man named George Floyd went to buy cigarettes in a corner store. After the transaction, he was accused of using a counterfeit €20 bill, and when he denied the accusation the police were called.

Part of what happened next was captured on video by a bystander: the incident ended with a police officer spending almost nine minutes with his knee to the neck of a handcuffed Floyd. George Floyd died after the incident.

The release of the video led to huge outcry, not just in the US but globally. The police officer, Derek Chauvin, was charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter on 29 May, which was upgraded to second-degree murder on 3 June. Three other officers are to be charged in relation to George Floyd’s death.

With protests against the death ongoing, the conversation has turned globally to the long history of racism and discrimination against black Americans. On this week’s The Explainer, Glenn Burkins, editor of the Q City Metro in North Carolina, joins us to give an American perspective about the events.

He tells us about what the protests mean for African Americans, what they could mean for the Trump administration, and his feelings as an African American reporter and publisher. 

Our own reporter Stevie McDermott gives us a timeline of what happened since George Floyd’s death in May.

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Source: The Explainer/SoundCloud

This episode was put together by presenter Sinéad O’Carroll, producer Aoife Barry, assistant producer and technical operator Nicky Ryan, and executive producer Christine Bohan. Guests were Stephen McDermott of TheJournal.ie and Glenn Burkins, publisher of Q City Metro. Design by Palash Somani.

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