In today's podcast, Martin Kuz, the West Coast correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor, shared his impressions of Minneapolis, the George Floyd killing and calls for police reform in the city of Minneapolis. As a native Minnesotan and 25 years experience as a journalist, he brought knowledge, judgment and perspective to the subject.
The cover photo for this podcast was taken by Martin on a recent visit to Minneapolis. It is George Floyd Square, the intersection where Officer Chauvin confronted George Floyd, subsequently wrestling him to the ground and kneeling on his neck for nine minutes. Adjacent to the neighborhood grocery/convenience store Cup Foods, the site has been taken over by the public and transformed into a shrine. Fresh flowers and mementoes are refreshed every day.
A life size outline of Floyd’s body is painted on the spot where he died. Painted blue the crime scene image forever marks the spot where America’s most recent reckoning and taking stock began Memorial Day Weekend 2020.
Further, he was fair and even handed in his observations. The CSM tradition of fairness seemed to be present in all of his comments.
One thing I learned from him was that Minneapolis is not the progressive peoples' paradise I had always thought it to be. The home of Liberal icons like Hubert Humphrey, Walter Mondale, Paul Wellstone and Amy Klobuchar only told a part of the story. The populist Wrestler turned Governor Jesse Ventura and a police culture that tolerated thumping tells a very different story.
the fact that the city has not yet come to terms with police reform and seems to be waiting for the Chauvin verdict before it does so, speaks volumes. And how those reforms will reverberate around other urban police forces around the United States remains to be seen.