Statement from Representative Jones on the murder of George Floyd

The killing of George Floyd is an American tragedy, a horrifying and totally unacceptable event that transpired in a manner for all to see. It lay bare deep-rooted racism and ongoing divisions in our country. While it is right those involved were immediately fired, it is not enough. While it is right the lead perpetrator was charged, it is not enough. While it is right the other officers were finally charged, it is not enough.

The protests that have gripped our nation are the natural by-product of the country reaching a breaking point. The universal condemnation by police officers at how George Floyd died is welcome. Violence, looting, and destruction, however, are unacceptable. While these destructive actions do not reflect the actions of the majority of peaceful protestors, such violence distracts from the important message of the cause.

Each of us, no matter our station, needs to stop and listen to one another, in order to really hear and understand. Those in positions of power have an obligation to incite peace and unity not violence and division. Violence benefits neither law enforcement nor the protestor. Actions that incite violence sow the seeds of division. We need to look for concrete and meaningful steps to make this American tragedy be the foundation for positive and effective change.

We each need to get out of our own individual comfort zones to understand one another if we truly want to solve some of these issues. I won’t pretend to understand all the problems nor to have all the answers. However, I do know we each need to be part of the solution. Going forward, I will continue to listen and reflect, and I promise to work to be part of that solution.

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