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Analyst: System in US ‘must be overthrown to achieve justice’ for Black people

A protester speaks to a crowd as they march through a neighborhood in Brunswick, Georgia, on May 5, 2020. (AP photo)

The system in the United States “must be overthrown to achieve justice for African Americans,” African American writer and journalist Abayomi Azikiwe says. 

Azikiwe, an editor at the Pan-African News Wire, made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Thursday while commenting on a statement by US President Joe Biden who said the verdict that found the three white men charged in the death of African American Ahmaud Arbery guilty of multiple counts of murder was not enough.

“While the guilty verdicts reflect our justice system doing its job, that alone is not enough. Instead, we must recommit ourselves to building a future of unity and shared strength, where no one fears violence because of the color of their skin,” Biden said in a statement.

He said his administration “will continue to do the hard work to ensure that equal justice under law is not just a phrase emblazoned in stone above the Supreme Court, but a reality for all Americans.”

On Wednesday, all three white men charged in the killing of Arbery, an unarmed 25-year-old Black Muslim man, were convicted of murder by a jury in the state of Georgia. 

All three defendants were convicted of murder, aggravated assault, false imprisonment and criminal intent to commit a felony. They face a minimum sentence of life in prison with the possibility of parole. 

Travis McMichael, 35, who fatally shot Arbery, was convicted on all nine charges, including malice, murder and four counts of felony murder.

McMichael's father, Gregory McMichael, 65, was convicted on the remaining charges, including the felony murder counts. McMichael's neighbor, William "Roddie" Bryan, was also found guilty of three of the felony murder counts.

Prosecutors have said that they intend to seek life in prison without parole for the three defendants.

Azikiwe said, “If the administration of President Joe Biden is serious about moving beyond the guilty verdicts in the lynching of Ahmaud Arbery, he should make a renewed push for the passage of federal anti-lynching laws and the adoption of the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act.”

“The problem of racist violence against African Americans has existed since the period of enslavement beginning in the 17th century. Also, Biden should reintroduce in Congress a new voting rights act to overturn the state legislative measures which have curtailed the right to universal suffrage,” he added.  

“Many people sacrificed immensely to win the right to vote after the Civil War through the 1960s. The voting rights movement along with efforts to win other fundamental democratic rights represents the cornerstone of the African American liberation movement. Biden owes his presidency to the African Americans and other people of color electorates,” he stated.

“In addition, the government should vigorously pursue the prosecution of Kyle Rittenhouse in Wisconsin based upon the violations of the Civil Rights of the two people killed and one wounded by this vigilante from the state of Illinois. As the mother of Tamir Rice, a 12-year-old killed by police in Cleveland several years ago, the system in the United States must be overthrown to achieve justice for African Americans,” he concluded.

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