Before going further on this exciting day for all America in space, I want to say a few words about the situation in Minnesota. The death of George Floyd on the streets of Minneapolis was a grave tragedy. It should never have happened. It has filled Americans all over the country with horror, anger and grief. Yesterday, I spoke to George’s family and expressed the sorrow of our entire nation for their loss. I stand before you as a friend and ally to every American seeking justice and peace and I stand before you in firm opposition to anyone exploiting this tragedy to loot, rob, attack and menace. Healing, not hatred, justice, not chaos, are the mission at hand.
The police officers involved in this incident have been fired from their jobs. One officer has already been arrested and charged with murder. State and federal authorities are carrying out an investigation to see what further charges may be warranted, including against sadly, the other three. In addition, my administration has opened a civil rights investigation and I have asked the Attorney General and the Justice Department to expedite it. I understand the pain that people are feeling. We support the right of peaceful protestors and we hear their pleas, but what we are now seeing on the streets of our cities has nothing to do with justice or with peace. The memory of George Floyd is being dishonored by rioters, looters and anarchists. The violence and vandalism is being led by Antifa and other radical left wing groups who are terrorizing the innocent, destroying jobs, hurting businesses and burning down buildings.
The main victims of this horrible, horrible situations are the citizens who live in these once lovely communities. The mobs are devastating the life’s work of good people and destroying their dream. Right now, America needs creation, not destruction, cooperation, not contempt, security, not anarchy and there will be no anarchy. Civilization must be cherished, defended, and protected. The voices of law abiding citizens must be heard and heard very loudly. We cannot and must not allow a small group of criminals and vandals to wreck our cities and lay waste to our communities. We must defend the rights of every citizen to live without violence, prejudice, or fear. We support the overwhelming majority of police officers who are incredible in every way and devoted public servants. They keep our city safe, protect our communities from gangs and drugs and risk their own lives for us every day.