When Officer Derek Chauvin was videotaped with his knee pressed into the late George Floyd’s neck, he did more than spark a national and international war against police brutality. George Floyd’s case hasn’t been the first time the nation has been distressed about racial injustices within our judicial system, but we are living in the technological digital age of the modern era. The video phone taping of Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin killing George Floyd, while Mr. Floyd plea’d for his breath venged an emotional war against police accountability, police reform, systemic injustice and finally, the treatment of Black victims at the hands of White defendants.
This also waged a fight against the mental health impact of these conditions on all communities throughout America, not only communities of color. And everyone will be able to stream and watch this trial live, as it is one of the biggest trials of the streaming TV age. Unlike the historic 1995 OJ Simpson case that was publicly televised, the accessibility to a smart phone, smart TV, computer, tablet or any type of digital device makes this trial viewable to more people, in real time, no matter where they might be.
The stress induced when many people in America watched the video of George Floyd’s killing, triggered acute and complex trauma symptoms. Some of those symptoms associated those individuals with conditions such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Depression and Anxiety, while activating anger, grief, separation, severe humiliation and centuries of emotional abuse.
Watching the Derek Chauvin case will be an emotional journey for most of those watching, as the world watches what happens when a non-violent criminal is slowly killed on tape during an arrest. Those coping with complex trauma triggered by Officer Derek Chauvin’s actions with George Floyd will be looking to break free of the survival mechanisms that they developed to cope with their mental circumstances. They will be seeking to soothe their trauma symptoms justice instead. When complex trauma goes unaddressed, we can expect that victims can develop unhealthy coping tools, which could include, addictions, looting, self-harm or even suicidal thoughts. And in the case of Derek Chauvin, the burden of proof is there that any black or brown person is America can become a potential victim of police brutality and racial injustice. The emotional impact of this case is the greatest of our time, and everyone has an opportunity to seek resolve and healing through watching.
Written by: The Happy Therapist- Sonia Singh, LCSW, LCADC -Alternative Mental Health Therapist. The purpose of this article is to educate and inspire our culture with mental health awareness. To find similar education and information from this author, please visit CENTEROFINNERTRANSFORMATIONS.COM or visit @thehappytherapist and @coithealth on Instagram. Facebook: @coithealth @cannahealthprogram