In the wake of the filmed killings of Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd and the recording of Amy Cooper lying hysterically about “an African American man threatening my life”, racial injustice is once again front and centre of the news in America, and an old Will Smith quote is becoming more relevant than ever.
A few weeks ago, the slaying of Ahmaud Arbery was leaked online, as millions bore witness to the horrific and senseless shooting of the 25-year-old by Travis McMichael, as he jogged round his Georgia neighbourhood. This week, we have once again been horrified, as George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer after having his neck knelt on for nine minutes, despite showing no signs of aggression toward the officer and only being under suspicion of writing a bad cheque at a nearby store.
The videos have repulsed millions, with thousands taking to the streets to riot and protest against the racial injustices still being faced by African Americans on a regular basis, often at the hands and feet of police.
It is this reason why Will Smith’s quote has gained so much prominence, with Smith saying to Stephen Colbert during an interview several years ago, “racism isn’t getting worse. It’s getting filmed.”
The four officers involved in the incident have since been fired by the Minneapolis PD, with many people calling for criminal charges, including murder, to be brought against them.