As protests break out across the U.S. following the death of George Floyd, a black man who pleaded for his life as a white Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck, Donald Trump has further stoked racial tensions with a post Twitter flagged for violating its policy against glorifying violence.
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Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot directly addressed the president on Friday while providing a public reaction to the recent developments.
“It’s impossible for me as a black woman who has been the target of blatant racism over the course of my life not to take the killing of George Floyd personally,” she said. “Watching that poor man beg for his life and for the ability to breathe and then watching the life leave him there in the streets I felt angry, I feel sickened and a range of other emotions all at once. Being black in America shouldn’t be a death sentence.”
Lightfood then turned her attention to Trump, who used a phrase — “when the looting starts, the shooting starts” — originally uttered in 1967 by a Miami police chief organizing a plan to “get tough” in the city’s black neighborhoods.
“Let me say one other thing. Donald Trump’s comment last night was profoundly dangerous,” she said. “And we must stand in firm solidarity and say this is totally unacceptable no matter who is the speaker. His goal is to polarize and destabilize local government and to inflame racists’ urges. And we can absolutely not let him prevail. And I will code what I really want to say to Donald Trump, it’s two words, it begins with ‘f’ and it ends with ‘you.'”