A jury found former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of killing George Floyd on all counts filed against him: second- and third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. My question is, “What now?”
The Civil War, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the 1994 Crime Bill were intended to solve the disparity between Blacks and whites. None have hit their mark. Why not? I believe it’s because there has always been an assumption that the “job was done” by Congress and us people. Since “way” before the Civil War, in fact.
That is incorrect! The job is never done! We must continuously “evaluate the current outcome” relative to today’s and tomorrow’s circumstances. In addition, without the long-needed purpose, unscrupulous leaders or leaders afraid of their responsibility will not move us toward any ultimate solutions.
Failure in our democracy comes from two missing and straightforward yet monumentally essential concepts: purpose and process. In today’s world, resolving significant issues within our democracy requires permanently defining these concepts in our Constitution. As listed, the Civil War and new laws have not solved anything. History has shown precisely the opposite.
So, what’s missing? First of all, “we” must define the purpose of our democracy. Since the founding of our democracy, we have failed to define boldly who is “We the People.” Defining “We the People” can no longer be ignored. “We the People” must be “All of Us and Each of Us.” Our democratic leaders work for “All of Us and Each of Us.” In doing so, our politics, our laws, the outcomes from our laws are understood yet must be ever-improving to meet the defining purpose of “We the People.” Our government, our legislators and even our largest institutions work for the betterment of All of Us and Each of Us.
Once our democracy’s defining purpose is adopted, inequitable outcomes will become, over time, a thing of the past. This purpose change will act like a snap of the fingers. However, we all know that snapping our fingers does nothing to change anything ... immediately. It will take time to fashion the outcomes of this purposeful change. However, to keep us on track, we can no longer use the legislative format that has evolved over the last several decades to solve anything. My examples are perfect proof of this. We have lived for multiple decades, even multiple centuries, trying to solve the racism issue only to fall on our face over and over again.
We must also define a new process for the government, a process that matches our new purpose. That new process must be “Futuristic Sustainability.” Why? Whether the issue is racism, global warming, poverty, technology, global adversaries, the wealth gap, individual/corporate greed, crime, immigration, power of all kinds, or any other big issue, “we” will never get ahead of the issues until we understand that the solution process must come from the future. We know what’s ahead. We have been choosing to ignore the future, falsely hoping things won’t change, sparing us any anguish. Our time of reckoning is upon us. Now is the time for us to create our future, instead of it eliminating us.
Many of us know by now that President Joe Biden’s attorney general, Merrick Garland, will be investigating the Minneapolis Police Department. He will be investigating the wrong organization. He should be investigating the Congress and presidency of the United States of America. They are the ones that created the Crime Bill in 1994 and never looked back.
I know that can’t and should not happen. However, “we” must do this investigation job. George Floyd is dead and Derek Chauvin’s going to jail because society has failed to act responsibly for two-and-half decades.
The Crime Bill legislation, along with other issues, has created policing that does not work. It has left countless dead and imprisoned Black males. In addition, we know fixing policing will not solve racism. I believe we also know that racism must be fixed comprehensively from all angles and issues simultaneously or we will look back once again and be asking “Why didn’t our ‘silo’ solutions work?”
For almost three decades, our Congress and the presidency have waged war in a “win-at-all cost” operating process. We need one team of legislators working for us, not themselves or their party. To guarantee that outcomes move forward, “We the People” need the monumental constitutional legislation defining who our government works for and how they work.
Our country and the world need the new leadership purpose and the futuristic sustainability process now. Tomorrow will be too late.
Steve Lundquist, of St. Louis Park, is the author of “True Leadership ... Where is it? Big Politics & Big Business.” The book’s website is Trueleadership.org.