I watched with millions of viewers around the world this afternoon as the judge opened the envelope with the jury’s verdicts in the trial of former police officer Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd on May 25, 2020. Guilty of murder in the second degree. Guilty of murder in the third degree. Guilty of manslaughter.
And then I cried…tears of relief after almost a year of randomly remembering a man I never knew except through his death…tears of relief for a verdict I had hoped for but was afraid wouldn’t be forthcoming…tears of relief for the Floyd family whose courage throughout the trial both inspired and crushed me.
I understand these verdicts are a tiny step forward on the long journey toward true equality in our American criminal justice system, in our battle against systemic racism. But my Texas sister Leora said it best tonight when we talked. “We’re moving forward, and if you aren’t going to go forward with us, you better get behind us.”
Stay safe, stay sane, get vaccinated and please stay tuned.
About Sheila Morris
Sheila Morris is a personal historian, essayist with humorist tendencies, lesbian activist, truth seeker and speaker in the tradition of other female Texas storytellers including her paternal grandmother.
In December, 2017, the University of South Carolina Press published her collection of first-person accounts of a few of the people primarily responsible for the development of LGBTQ organizations in South Carolina. Southern Perspectives on the Queer Movement: Committed to Home will resonate with everyone interested in LGBTQ history in the South during the tumultuous times from the AIDS pandemic to marriage equality.
She has published five nonfiction books including two memoirs, an essay compilation and two collections of her favorite blogs from I'll Call It Like I See It. Her first book, Deep in the Heart: A Memoir of Love and Longing received a Golden Crown Literary Society Award in 2008. Her writings have been included in various anthologies - most recently the 2017 Saints and Sinners Literary Magazine. Her latest book, Four Ticket Ride, was released in January, 2019.
She is a displaced Texan living in South Carolina with her wife Teresa Williams and their dogs Spike, Charly and Carl. She is also Naynay to her two granddaughters Ella and Molly James who light up her life for real. Born in rural Grimes County, Texas in 1946 her Texas roots still run wide and deep.
This entry was posted in family life
, Slice of Life
, The Way Life Is
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, derek chauvin guilty on all 3 counts
, floyd family
, murder of george floyd
, systemic racism
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I truly feel a sense of justice tonight. Peace Full.
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I felt I could breathe.
I watched his eyes when the sentences were read. He was shocked, surprised and panicked. He wasn’t expecting it. He belongs in prison.
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Yes, Cindy. Sadly, tragically, yes.