George Floyd – a Hero?

George Floyd Was No Hero

“You Changed the World, George” proclaimed a huge sign painted on the side of a building in Minneapolis this week. Implicit in the sign is the message that George Floyd was a hero. George Floyd was not a hero. He was a  victim.

Courage

But, there are some heroes in this story. One is Darnella Frazier, the 17-year-old girl who used her iPhone 11 to film the murder scene as Dereck Chauvid’s knee took the life out of George Floyd. For 9+ minutes.

Imagine the exact same situation – with all the eyewitnesses but without video. Any possibility of a guilty verdict? Absolutely not.

 

Vision

Let’s go back to 1983. Steve Jobs is trying to recruit John Sculley, CEO of Pepsi, to come to Apple. He asks Sculley, “Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling sugar water, or do you want to change the world?” That question reflects Jobs’ take-no-prisoners vision. Apple introduced the iPhone in 2007. By 2009 the iPhone came with video.

Now imagine 2009 – 2021 without smart phone video. Witnesses would complain,

“…but he was unarmed.”

“He was not resisting arrest.”

” When he was shot he had his hands up.”

In all cases, police testimony would override eyewitness accounts. There would be no movement for police reform, probably no BLM – here, and around the world.

Apple, you have changed the world.

Technology

Did Steve Jobs do all this? No. Apple hired some of the best engineers in the world. They did it. Jobs created the vision, and used bullying techniques to get the best work out of his technical staffs. If we are to believe the stories, Jobs could be a real son-of-a-bitch to work for. But… he got results.

Summary

The heroes who can take credit for the emerging new policing techniques are the nameless, faceless high IQ nerds who work in Apple’s R&D departments. Jobs hired them and forced them to do their best work. He then brought these amazing devices to market and sold them to heroes like Darnella Frazier who risked her life on a street corner in Minneapolis.

Indeed, our world has been changed…for the better.

4 thoughts on “George Floyd – a Hero?

  1. Bill says:

    Rick,
    Insightful as usual.
    Every technology has pluses and minuses, aspects that enhance life and society and aspects that do the opposite. People using the technology for good, misusing it, or failing to use it make the difference.

  2. Mark Shaw says:

    Yes, Darnella was a hero. The irony was that during the trail she felt she should have done more. As if she should have said something to stop the murder. Sometimes our most important heros don’t think of themselves as heros. There were others as well. People who spoke up. Right there. Like Genevieve Hansen, an off-duty firefighter. It’s hard to be a hero, I think. Because we have created a stereotypical unrealistic expectations of what a hero means, Those clay feet statues are all bs. Being a hero may mean something as simple as speaking up.
    Thank you Rick

  3. Hal says:

    Job’s was an idea man who could pitch his ideas. He could not write code and had modest back-end knowledge of computing. For better or worse he was an unqualified jerk. But he had blinders too. He was a “fruitarian” and thought this ridiculous regimen would save him. He was probably on the spectrum and was an idiot savant of sorts. I strongly recommend reading “Steve Jobs” by Walter Issacson, et.al.

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