As the nation grapples with George Floyd's tragic death, issues of racism and police conduct are understandably at the forefront of the discussion.
Floyd was killed during an altercation with Minneapolis police after an officer held him down by placing his knee on Floyd's neck. Floyd pleaded with the officer that he couldn't breathe, and bystanders begged the officer to stop. Floyd became unresponsive and died shortly thereafter.
But there's even more to this story than most media outlets are reporting.
According to a new report from the New York Post, Floyd had been trying to start a better life in Minneapolis after being released from jail in Texas. He had secured two jobs -- one driving trucks and another as a bouncer at the restaurant Conga Latin Bistro, where he was known as “Big Floyd.”
He was working hard, and his friends say he was doing his best to get his life on track.
“He was looking to start over fresh, a new beginning,” said Christopher Harris, Floyd’s lifelong friend. “He was happy with the change he was making.”
But the COVID-19 lockdowns changed everything.
"Floyd was laid off amid Minnesota’s coronavirus stay-at-home order, which shuttered bars and restaurants," the Post reported.
“He was doing whatever it takes to maintain going forward with his life,” Harris said.
Floyd was allegedly apprehended after trying to pass off a counterfeit $20 bill. His friends say this wasn't something he was likely to do, and investigators will no doubt determine whether this part of Floyd's story is true.
In any case, no man should die for attempting to use a counterfeit $20 bill.
Floyd was, according to this report, trying to pursue the American dream. He was trying to start over, to better his life through hard work. Floyd didn't die due to the lockdown orders: he died due to the terrible actions of a police officer. But when our elected officials shut down our country, they ended the American dream for thousands of Americans.
Politicians implemented unnecessary, tyrannical lockdown orders in an effort to absolve themselves of COVID-19 deaths. In the process, they destroyed the financial futures of thousands of Americans, including those of men and women like Floyd.
Hard work and ingenuity have made our nation great. It's time to get back to those founding principles. It's time to end the lockdown, and you can be a part of that movement.