Relief, emotion and a sense of hope swept through Brunswick, on social media, the White House and across the United States as the nation accepted Ahmaud Arbery’s verdicts and their place in it. story.
Outside the Georgia courthouse, a cheerful flag-waving crowd repeatedly chanted: Ahmaud Arbery! Say his name! as the Arbery family, surrounded by their lawyers, came out to speak to them.
It’s been a long fight, it’s been a tough fight, said Arberys mother Wanda Cooper-Jones.
To tell you the truth, I have never seen this day. In 2020, I never thought that this day would come.Thank you to those who walked, to those who prayed, thank you.
Cooper-Jones said his son will now rest in peace.
Arbery’s father, Marcus Arbery, thanked his son’s mother, as well as the activists and lawyers who helped bring attention to his son’s case.
God has brought us all together to make this happen, he said. We have defeated this crowd of lynchers. We have this crowd of lynchers Today is a good day.
Ben Crump, the civil rights lawyer representing the Arbery family, said that while the outcome of the case is welcome, Ahmaud Arberys’ parents are still mourning their son.
Even though it’s not a celebration, it’s a reflection. Ahmaud’s spirit defeated the mob of lynchings, he told the crowd at the courthouse.
In a statement released immediately after the verdicts were read, Crump also assessed the power of the moment. After nearly two years of pain, suffering and questioning whether the Ahmauds killers would be held to account, the Arbery family have finally obtained justice, he said.
Ahmaud Arbery’s violent criminal harassment and lynching has been documented on video for the world to witness. But yet, due to the deep cracks, flaws, and biases in our systems, we wondered if we would ever see justice.
Today certainly indicates progress, but we are far from the finish line. Keep walking. Keep fighting for what’s right. And never stop running for Ahmaud.
From the Oval Office, Joe Biden reflected on Arberys’ murder as a devastating reminder of how far we need to go in the fight for racial justice in this country, but saw the outcome of the trials as a beacon of hope.
We must re-commit to building a future of unity and shared strength, where no one fears violence because of the color of their skin, the president said in a statement.
My administration will continue to work hard to ensure that equal justice before the law is not just a phrase set in stone above the Supreme Court, but a reality for all Americans.
Outside the courtroom, Civil Rights Leader Reverend Al Sharpton told the enthusiastic crowd: Brunswick, Georgia will go down in history as the place where criminal justice took a different turn. Decades from now they will be talking about a boy called Ahmaud Arbery who taught this nation what justice looks like.
Bernice King, daughter of civil rights icon Dr Martin Luther King Jr, welcomed the verdict on Twitter but noted: #AhmaudArbery should be here.
#AhmaudArbery should be there.
The McMichaels and Bryans are indeed guilty of committing suicide for the sole reason that he is black.
I pray and think of the Ahmauds family, including his mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, who is still missed by her son at this time. pic.twitter.com/JNKCzfSXP8
– Be a King (@BerniceKing) November 24, 2021
The McMichaels and Bryans are indeed guilty of committing suicide for the sole reason that he is black. I pray and think of the Ahmauds family, including his mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, who is still missing her son at the moment, she wrote.
Reverend Raphael Warnock, U.S. Democratic Senator for Georgia and Baptist pastor, echoed her words. This verdict confirms a sense of responsibility, but not real justice, he said in a tweet.
True justice is like a black man who doesn’t have to worry about being hurt or killed while jogging, sleeping in his bed, all while living what should be a very long life. Ahmaud should be with us today.
In contrast, right-wing politicians and commentators have remained noticeably silent in the aftermath of the trial’s conclusion.
There was no opening statement from Donald Trump, the former president who was quick to celebrate the acquittal of 18-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse on Friday for killing two men and injuring another during the ‘a protest for racial justice last year in Wisconsin, nor any of the Republican congressmen who vie with each to accept Rittenhouse as an intern.
In his remarks to the Brunswick crowd, Sharpton cited the case of Trayvon Martin, an unarmed 17-year-old black boy who was gunned down by White Quarter Watch Captain George Zimmerman in Florida in 2012. Zimmerman was acquitted a year later after presenting a self-defense argument similar to that of the McMichaels, in a verdict that sparked widespread outrage.
Let it be clear that almost 10 years after Trayvon, God used Wanda and Marcuss’ son to prove that if we kept walking and fighting, we would make you hear us, he said.
Sybrina Fulton, Trayvons’ mother, celebrated Arbery’s verdicts on Twitter with a Guilty !! Justice4AhmaudArbery graphic.
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