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A Child’s View of the Death of George Floyd

Amara DeLong, 9

New Orleans, LA

Last year, my four-year-old neighbor dressed up as a police officer for Halloween.  He was very proud of his costume!  Little did he know what was actually happening in the world.

Two days ago, my family and I learned about the death of George Floyd.  We watched the video, on CNN, of a police officer putting his knee on the forty-six-year-old man’s neck, even as he pleaded for the officer to get off.

At school, we are taught to respect police officers.  We are taught that they protect our community.

We are also taught that racism ended with the civil rights movement.  We learn about Harriet Tubman’s fight against slavery, and Rosa Parks’s and Martin Luther King’s fight against segregation.  We learn about Ida B. Wells’s fight against lynching.  Yet, we don’t learn about the racism present today.

The evils that Ida B. Wells fought against are still happening.  George Floyd was lynched, and he was lynched by police officers. These are the people who have a responsibility to protect communities, not destroy them.

I want to grow up in a country with a greater sense of justice.  I want a country that achieves the goals of our activists and real heroes.  I hope that, one day, children in America can wear a police officer costume with actual pride.


Reader Interactions


  1. Amara,

    Hope your wishes come true and I know you’ll play a part in making that happen.



  2. Amara, very nicely written about your thoughts and am sure you echo the feelings of many people young and old.
    Ask Mom and Dad to send your article to other newspapers.

  3. Amara,

    I am so proud to be one of your grandaunts!!
    When I grow up I want to be Amara.


  4. This is beautiful, expressive, and moving. Thank you for sharing your heart through your art Amara. (I know your Aunt Anita)

  5. Soul searching presentation.
    We saw the video clip and we can imagine what it did to your tender mind…. let us hope all this horror will change as you move on ..,
    Periappa –

  6. Amara:

    Your maturity astounds me. With children like you growing up in USA, I am sure there is light at at the end of this current dark tunnel.

    Mani uncle and swarna aunty

  7. Dear Amara,
    Your article is amazing. We need more people like you to help make not only the USA but the whole world a better place for the poor and disenfranchised. Ganpat and Geetha.

  8. Thank you, Amara. I hope the rest of us will rise to meet the challenge of your expectations. Best,

  9. Amara,

    Everything you said was right. I hope that all of your desires come true. Your writing made my mom cry and moved the rest of us, too. I hope it opens people’s eyes everywhere.


  10. In 1960, when I was 12 I had to give a short speech in front of my class in New Zealand. I chose to speak about the NAACP, from an article I had read and which affected me deeply. It’s sad to see that things have not changed much in the intervening 60 years.
    A well written article Amara, the pen is indeed mightier than the sword!

  11. Dear Amara,

    You are amazing – and lots more insightful than most of the adults I know.

    Your new friend,
    (introduced by your Auntie Aruna)

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