An Alaska highschool teacher has been placed on administrative leave after telling college students that George Floyd would nonetheless be alive if he had complied with Minneapolis police.
In a 15-minute video posted on YouTube last week, a masked teacher at Lathrop High School in Fairbanks is seen main a dialogue of high-profile police shootings of African-Americans. When the subject turns to Floyd, the teacher says former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin “abused his authority” and “was complicit in George Floyd’s death.”
“But if George Floyd had, at the beginning when they got him out of the car and went to put him in the police car if he had just sidled into the car and slid it in there, and let them put his legs in, he would be alive today, and you know that’s true,” she provides.
Chauvin was convicted of second-degree unintentional homicide, third-degree homicide and second-degree manslaughter final month after he knelt on Floyd’s neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds final Memorial Day whereas making an attempt to subdue and arrest him on a cost of passing counterfeit cash.
“If the cops come and they say, ‘I’m taking you to jail,’ then you put your hands behind your back, you let them off you, you get in the cop car and you go and call your parents when they give you your phone call,” the teacher goes on. “That’s what you do to stay alive. Everybody, white, black, brown. I don’t care what color you are. None of that makes a difference. You comply, you do what they say.”
The teacher, a self-described “old white lady,” provides that if she have been ever arrested, “I’m putting my hands behind my back and I’m going to jail and I’m calling my husband when I get there, and he’s going to call our attorney. And I’m gonna tell the cops, I’m gonna say, ‘Yes sir,’ and ‘Sir, when you search me, you’re going to find a gun strapped to my ankle, and I’m just letting you know about it now, so that you don’t, you know, so that you can get it and be safe.’”
Later within the video, the teacher tells her college students tips on how to costume with a purpose to keep away from attracting the eye of cops.
“Look at how you guys are dressed,” she says. “You guys are dressed nicely. You don’t look like thugs, you don’t have your pants down around your knees.”
Lathrop High principal Carly Sween described the remarks as “racially insensitive.” District officers haven’t formally recognized the teacher, however she is referred to within the video as “Ms. Gardner.” Lathrop’s web site lists a Connie Gardner as a particular training teacher. An electronic mail to Gardner’s work handle by The Post requesting remark was not instantly returned.
The teacher is ultimately challenged by a tutor named Liz who says she’s “a little uncomfortable” concerning the “insinuation that the way that someone is dressed should garner more response from the police … Police should be trained not to judge people based on those factors and if someone has their pants around their knees doesn’t mean they’re a criminal.”
After the tutor says that “police should also be trained not to kill people even if they don’t comply,” the teacher responds that “If people comply with the police, they have much less chance of being killed by the police … if you value your life and you want to live, you will comply with the police.”
At that time, a mother or father who describes herself as a “woman of color who has lived in the South … who was born and raised in the South, who experienced racism first-hand, even when I was a child” chimes in.
“Some of the things that you are saying, I feel like you are very uneducated on,” the mother or father says, “and I don’t feel like you are able to address these things that are going on in the world today.”
Apparently chastened, the teacher lastly says: “I’m not going to be, um, you realize, it is a class –“
“No, you’re exactly right,” the mother or father fires again. “It is a class, it is a class, and this is where it should stop. You should stop this conversation. Period.”