An Open Letter From Pastor Bank Akinmola... Racism In America
To World Outreach Church for All Nations and To the World:
Eight Minutes and 46 Seconds
A small space of time the world will never forget. On May 25, 2020, George Floyd was arrested on a charge of passing a counterfeit $20.00 bill at a grocery store in the Powderhorn Park neighborhood of Minneapolis. According to the store clerk, the bill was an obvious fake, and George had refused to return the purchased cigarettes when challenged.
George Floyd died after Derek Chauvin, A white police officer, pressed his knee to George’s neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds during the arrest. George was handcuffed face down in the street while two other officers further restrained him, and a fourth prevented onlookers from intervening. This act of torture was and is Police Brutality. Police Brutality is when officers exercise undue or excessive force against a person to include physical or verbal harassment, mental injury, or even death.
From Rodney King in 1991 to George Floyd in 2020, at least 104 unarmed blacks have met their un-timely and unjustifiable death at the hands of over- zealous and racist police officers across the United States. These officers represent the bad apples among an otherwise dedicated group who swore an oath which reads “on my honor, I will never betray my badge, my integrity, my character, or the public trust.”
The case of George Floyd was a flagrant violation of that oath, which has led to the loss of public trust. Unfortunately, only in a few cases have these bad apples been brought to justice, thus sparking condemnation from international and civil rights organizations. Because of this, I stand against the problematic law enforcement in the US and affirm the peaceful national protest, against racism in America. I support the Black Lives Matter movement, a call to action in response to state-sanctioned violence and anti-Black racism.
I also reject and repudiate the politics of division and insensitivity from Washington. America is better than what we’ve seen in the past few years, and most definitely the last few days; after all, this nation elected anAfrican American President twice.
We need to fix the systematic, institutionalized racial prejudice that still permeates across the socio-economic fabric of this nation. The Minneapolis City Council’s disbanding of the MPD is a step in the right direction, and other cities need to follow. What’s needed now is transformation, not modification.
As a faith community, we have a significant role to play because the issue at hand is a Heart Issue that cannot be legislated. The only way we can walk with the pure heart of God is to love as God loves. He is a God of love and justice, and He made us all in His Image. Racism is a denial of this fact and is an offense against God.
I am issuing this open letter to invite you to participate in a series of teaching messages called “Race Relations and Reconciliation” to address the very un-godly acts against the one race... God’s Race.
I want to thank you for the commitment to stand with me as we continue to protest peacefully against Racism in America and the World.