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Trinidad: Archbishop on US riots, upcoming TT elections: Time to talk about race

Important conversations around race need to happen in this country as election times approach.

That’s the view of RC Archbishop Jason Gordon on Black Lives Matters and race relations in TT.

Gordon said at every election, there is a big discussion of racism in politics, and the introduction of discussion on race could lead to “communion” in the country.

“Every time we have elections, we come back to a form of racism that is fuelling the nation. It is a real sad thing in 2020…

“Real conversation leads to communion. It leads to us recognising each other as human beings. To have a real conversation you have to see the humanity of the other and be willing to enter into unity through the conversation.”

In the US, Black Lives Matter protests began last week because a police officer knelt on the neck of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, killing him, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The protests have continued and spread. Small protests have been held this week outside the US Embassy in Port of Spain.

“Black Lives Matters is important because in America, there is a group who have been discriminated against – and discrimination is not just on the level of one human being to another human being putting the knee on the neck.”

Gordon said there was systemic racism in the US judicial system because a man could kill a person without that act being considered murder. The officer involved in Floyd’s killing was originally charged with third-degree murder, but the charge was later raised to second-degree murder.

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