One more blood stain in the US’ horrible human rights record

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Men jumped on police vehicles near the site of an officer involved shooting and killing of Daunte Wright during a traffic stop on April 11. Photo: VCG

Barely one year after George Floyd was strangled to death by a US policeman, unarmed 20-year-old black man Daunte Wright was shot dead by a Minneapolis police on Sunday. According to media reports, the incident took place just 10 miles (16 kilometers) from where Floyd was killed.

In the aftermath of Floyd’s death, massive protests against police brutality and racism swept the US. Within less than one year, when the trial of Floyd’s death is still under way, a similar tragedy happened again. It sparked a fresh round of demonstrations. The vulnerable black community in the US has every reason to feel angry toward police brutality and the systematic discrimination against them.

It has become a common scene where black Americans and other ethnic minority groups have turned the victim of violence by police officers during law enforcement, Li Haidong, a professor at the Institute of International Relations of the China Foreign Affairs University, told the Global Times on Tuesday.

“US cops tend to use violence on black Americans and other ethnic minority people while being relatively polite to whites. This reflects the internal cultural problem in the police system. Such a problem is the culprit for racist moves during law enforcement,” Li noted.

Black Americans and other ethnic minority Americans are suffering from violent law enforcement almost every day. It is just that media pays varied attention to specific cases. It is nearly impossible to count on the police officers to abandon or even reduce violent actions in law enforcement – this is intertwined with the US culture in terms of politics and owning personal guns. This is a deep-rooted chronic disease that is hard to cure. Every time there is a serious incident, protests will come along to temporarily rectify the situation. But in the long run, only when black Americans can enjoy equal social status with whites in economy and education can violent law enforcement be reduced or eliminated.

The black communities face deep discrimination in American society, but they tend to bravely speak out against the discrimination if any of their group members suffer. When a black American is shot dead, black Americans in different regions in the US are able to empathize with his or her sufferings. It will cause resonant reactions across the country, such as protests, smashing and looting. The black communities have a strong consciousness to safeguard their rights, which also reflects inequality within the US is so difficult to rule out, thus making the black group always feel dissatisfied.

Nonetheless, black Americans are still in an unfair situation in the US. They still have a long way to go to fight for equality. Besides the black communities, other ethnic groups including Asian-Americans are facing similar situations. Although US President Joe Biden recently called gun violence an “international embarrassment,” American political elites have no interest in eliminating such serious social illnesses at all. Politicians instigate hostility against foreign countries with their deceiving words while the grass-roots vulnerable groups in the US are unable to be unified to deal a heavy blow to the US system. Therefore, the US has fearlessly maintained a delicate balance.

More interestingly, US political elites still hold to a firm belief that the US has the best human rights record despite the fact that the US has witnessed so far the highest COVID-19 death toll, repeated police brutality, and countless bloody shootings every year. Politicians always willfully use human rights as a weapon to cooperate with Washington’s geopolitical game, turning a blind eye to the US’ own horrible human rights record. The US’ double standards on human rights also have become a laughing stock on the international stage.

Black Americans and other ethnic minority people have been suppressed by the US system, and this situation will go on. Except for more blood stains on its human rights records, the US currently sees little hope for any improvement in this regard.

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