To the editor:

Anyone watching George Floyd’s last moments when he said “I can’t breathe” had a twisting feeling in the pit of their stomach. I believe they also felt a portion of the collective guilt. It wasn’t just the policeman who killed George Floyd -- it was everyone who ever shut the door of opportunity on him.

And yes, I believe when he was calling for his mother, the moment when he died, they were reunited in heaven.

But I don’t want to look back. It is more important to expect changes in the future. I am in agreement with that great man, Martin Luther King Jr., when he said “I have a dream.”

I see wealthy Americans giving/sharing part of their yearly income with those citizens who have meager salaries. And a solid education needs to be available for everyone -- not just Black students, but Native Americans. It starts with Head Start in the inner cities. It starts with government programs giving these students enrichment during their public school experiences. It starts with college students getting credit for tutoring inner-city pupils, particularly in reading and math. Senior citizens would gladly volunteer their time. It starts with community colleges charging students based on their ability to pay. It starts with major computer companies donating laptops twice during every needy student’s schooling. It starts with the wealthy sharing their salaries to pay part of the college costs at a promising high school student’s graduation. And it starts at tax time when the government could give $1,000 to each person earning less than $60,000.

All this would make a wonderful legacy for George Floyd as well as for every person who walked in his honor. People who share their salary with his family will feel a moment of tremendous love and pride. I believe he and his mother will be beaming down from heaven when his daughter walks across the stage as she receives her degree. And concurrently you will hear the sound of clapping as the doors of opportunity are swinging open.

Judith Lichenstein

Peabody

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