June 1, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON - Today, Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles County) issued the following statement in response to the murder of George Floyd and nationwide protests.

"Watching Minneapolis police officers murder George Floyd shook me to my core. All the officers involved must be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. I share the pain and frustration that Americans feel in this moment. Black lives matter.

"The protests erupting across America are an expression of pain. They are born from generations of violence against black people. The deaths of Breonna Taylor, Freddie Gray, Philando Castile, Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, Eric Garner and countless other black people that preceded George Floyd's death didn't bring an end to police brutality. Justice has not been served and has led us to this moment. 

"Millions of people around the country are protesting to raise their objections to how we treat Black Americans in this country. Americans from all walks of life are speaking out against the overt and insidious ways racism shapes life in America. These diverse protests have largely been peaceful demonstrations of anti-racist solidarity.

"I am dismayed, however, that opportunism has driven some to co-opt this movement to wreak havoc. As immigrants, my parents owned small stores not unlike some of those that have been looted. Places of worship, government buildings and private businesses have been vandalized or destroyed. It saddens me to see this kind of destruction conflated with a moment of activists seeking justice. Those engaged in looting, vandalism, arson or other forms of violence must stop. We need to take our shared frustrations and channel them into real change.

"Americans of all colors and creeds are seeing that racism and white supremacy are problems we can't ignore. Real, tangible change is overdue. Congress and state legislatures need to pass laws to reform our justice system and our institutions. Community officials and police must listen to the cries from the marginalized among them. Prosecutors must prosecute hate crimes and homicides against minorities, whether the perpetrator is a civilian or a police officer. Americans must make their voices heard not just on the streets, but in voting booths. By enacting real change, we honor George Floyd and the generations of black Americans who died at the hands of our government."