By Pastor Chris Hagen
Do not stand by while your neighbor’s blood is shed. Leviticus 19:17
Monday evening, May 25, 2020, a Minneapolis police officer knelt on the neck of George Floyd until he was dead. Three other officers stood by and did not attempt to intervene to save Floyd’s life.
Whether a crime was committed, whether Mr. Floyd did anything wrong, whether police responded to threat, whether the use of force was warranted are topics for another time. Three people in authority stood by while another killed a man.
Witnesses took videos of the killing. Others cried out for the officers to stop. Bystanders attempted to intervene without interfering. It was not enough to prevent a citizen’s death. Now people are rising to intervene in a system, a mindset that has proved dangerous to men of color. Vandalism and violence may be unproductive, but the rage must be acknowledged.
This is not a Black issue. This is not a race issue. This is not another’s issue. It’s our issue. Christians, Jews and anyone of a human ethic are called upon to challenge and change a culture that discriminates by race, often to deadly results. We are morally obligated by God, or at least by respect for life, to personally intercede in this injustice.