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On 9 June 2020, viewers around the globe were glued to international TV networks to watch the live coverage of the funeral of George Floyd, an African-American man who was killed by the police during an arrest in Minneapolis on May 25 2020. Police brutality against African-Americans is not something new and this is what led to the slogan ‘Black Lives Matter’ that has been the lodestar of the recent waves of protest. The American Police Force is embedded with systemic racism which seems to have been reinforced by Donald Trump’s presidency.
However, the brutal killing of Floyd should be understood in a broader context. The Black race has gone through many dehumanising experiences, including the Trans-Atlantic slave trade, colonialism, and all manner of discrimination. This, in turn, has led to an inferiority complex because, for the most part, we have been defined by others – and not in the most positive of terms to say the least. There is a need for a conscious paradigm shift to transcend from a negative self-image to a positive one on the part of Black people all over the world. It is high time we stood up to define ourselves.