Social psychology has become front and center as the nation wrestles with how to move forward after George Floyd’s death. The nation was divided before his death, and to some degree divided afterward. Dr. Rossi, Ph.D. breaks down the psychology of it.
The past few years we’ve seen the United States deeply divided, mostly along party lines. But politics aside, large amounts of people are angry; despite they’re angry over different things, they are an angry populace nonetheless.
After George Floyd died in police custody the nation erupted in anger and protests. We haven’t seen widespread anger like this in decades. Unfortunately, amid the chaos, the criminal-minded took advantage to destroy vandalize and loot.
President Trump seemed to want to lump peaceful protesters, vandals, and looters together, and push back with excessive force; the very thing people were protesting about.
During a call with Governors across the country, Trump insisted that they “are weak” and needed to “dominate protestors.” (read more about the transcript here). Critics, though outraged, weren’t surprised by Trump’s view. Previously he had expressed admiration for how the Chinese crushed the Tieniman Square protests with speed and force.
One friend of mine called to tell me “the Democrats handed Seattle over to violent and armed protesters. Fox News was telling the nation the same thing, and that armed guards were checking people at the entrance to the autonomous zone. Although this video seems to debunk those claims.
Another friend who lives blocks from the autonomous zone had a different view.
while the video showed just the opposite. Protesters were said to have broken in and taken over City Hall — in fact, it was a city council member that led the protesters and had keys to the building.
I had to flee my apartment on the 7th floor,” a friend told me. “Even with towels under the door, the tear gas was so intense that it made it impossible to stay there — so I went to a hotel. A lot of us were capturing video from our rooftops and sharing what was going on. Then police began a sweep of buildings and removing people from the roofs of their own apartments so they could no longer shoot video footage of what was occurring. So that is what going on.
On one side of the debate are those that support the Black Lives Matter movement, or at least their views that there is, in fact, systemic racism in America, and it has to change. George Floyd was the one too many that lit the recent fuse.
On the other side of the debate are those that chant “Blue lives matter” — in a sort of your with us or against us type of way. They feel that supporting the police 100% and unconditionally makes then law & order citizens. Those who oppose the police in their view, are anarchists.
Many I’ve spoken with have expressed that one can hold both views: they can respect the police as a whole, and demand accountability for the bad actors in the bunch.
In this episode, Dr. Rossi discusses millennials, Gen Z, perceptions, and what change might look like, and come about. Will this remain a topic of the bitter divide or a bipartisan effort to heal the nation? Can sensitivity training of law enforcement help?