10/5-George Floyd’s death shows the power of social media as the US continues to grapple with racial tensions- Julia Duchossois

In George Floyd’s death shows the power of social media as the US continues to grapple with racial tensions, Kathryn Diss argues that social media has been a powerful platform in spreading news about police brutality, and ultimately has expanded and empowered conversation surrounding it.

Diss begins her argument by explaining the the George Floyd case, one that shook the nation when a video leaked of a white police man weighing his knee into Floyd’s neck on the ground, ultimately leading to his death. The spread of this video led to an uproar from protesters worldwide, who demanded the officers be held accountable for their actions. Diss argues that the Floyd case was only the “latest in a long line”, and explained various other cases of racism resulting in death caught on film, including Eric Garner, who died after police put him in a chokehold, and Ahmaud Arbery, who was shot dead while on a run. Ultimately, Diss believes that social media and video footage led to increased protesting and conversation surrounding race and brutality.

Diss makes a powerful argument about the impact of social media on the conversations and behaviors of the nation. One quote that I found particularly powerful is this: “It might be easier to hold police accountable in the age of social media, where the court of public opinion can play a role.┬áBut if the court system doesn’t offer a fair trial, the power of citizen journalism wanes.” I found this moving because it emphasizes the roll that people can have over conversations and decisions, while still calling for fair policies from decision makers. I found Diss’ argument relatable and valid, as I remember finding information about the George Floyd case and the proceeding protests on multiple social media platforms. In response to the heavy social media coverage, I, along with many of my friends and family members, took this as an opportunity to become educated and involved in the movement, which follows the pattern Diss argues.

One thought on “10/5-George Floyd’s death shows the power of social media as the US continues to grapple with racial tensions- Julia Duchossois

  1. I read this article and completely agree with everything you said. It is one thing that technology allows us to virtually have a camera in our pockets, enabling the person to take the video, but it is another thing that that is able to go viral and begin a movement. You mentioning that you took this as an opportunity to educate yourself further and get involved in the movement underscores the point of just how important it is that we have these resources now.

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