Rapper and actor Ice Cube has repeated his call for action in police brutality crimes against African-Americans after a Minnesota officer allegedly suffocated a black man by kneeling on his neck.
Footage from the Monday night incident, during which unarmed George Floyd can be heard repeatedly telling officers he was struggling to breathe, has outraged thousands online and led to the dismissals of the cops involved – and now Ice Cube has weighed in.
“How long will we go for Blue on Black Crime before we strike back???” the rapper tweeted on Tuesday morning, attaching a link to the disturbing video.
He returned to social media as followers started attacking him for his remarks and added: “Anybody coming at me for what I said ain’t ready to do shit.”
His comments come five years after Ice Cube told Billboard he feared police brutality against African-Americans was becoming an increasingly big issue in America.
“What we got to do is hold these dudes more accountable. We need body cameras on all these cops and we need it to be a federal offence if they tamper with those cameras, manipulate those cameras in any kind of way, or obstruct those cameras,” the rap star said.
“And we need these good cops to start snitching on these bad cops. They talk shit about our neighbourhoods for having a no-snitch policy, but they have a no-snitch policy in their department, and that’s the problem. The good cops need to point out these bad cops, get them out of here, and get your dignity and respect back from the community.”
Police spokesman John Elder insists the deceased, Floyd, “physically resisted officers”, adding, “Officers were able to get the suspect into handcuffs, and officers noticed that the man was going into medical distress.”
Floyd lost consciousness at the scene and was taken to Hennepin County Medical Center, where he died.
“We all watched the horrific death of George Floyd on video as witnesses begged the police officer to take him into the police car and get off his neck,” said Ben Crump, a civil rights attorney representing the Floyd family. “This abusive, excessive, and inhumane use of force cost the life of a man who was being detained by the police for questioning about a non-violent charge.”
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey has revealed that all four police officers involved in the death of George Floyd have been “terminated”.
FBI officials and and Minnesota state authorities are investigating the incident.
“Being black in America should not be a death sentence,” Frey tweeted on Tuesday. “For five minutes, we watched a white officer press his knee into a black man’s neck. Five minutes. This officer failed in the most basic, human sense.”
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz has called the incident “sickening”, adding: “We will get answers and seek justice.”