The Black Plight Series

Part II
Who Was Breonna Taylor?

Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd are the latest examples of the black plight in the United States. All were unjustly killed at the hands of white men or police officers, and Americans everywhere have fiercely reacted, via social media and in the streets of cities across the nation. 

In the Black Plight Series, we will examine the lives and deaths of Arbery, Taylor and Floyd, the legal response to their killers, and how their demises have impacted the nation as a whole. 

In Part II, we will take a look at Taylor’s life through the eyes of her family and friends.

Today, June 5, would have been the day that Breonna Taylor turned 27 years old.

Taylor, unfortunately and unjustifiably, will not get to celebrate her 27th birthday with family and friends, considering her life came to an end nearly three month ago.

On March 13, three plainclothes officers executed a no-knock search warrant at Taylor’s apartment in Louisville, Kentucky at 12:30am. Taylor’s boyfriend believed the cops to be intruders and fired one shot once the cops entered the apartment.

The cops returned fire, shooting Taylor eight times in the process.

All three cops are white men.

Taylor’s life and death has been largely drowned out by the COVID-19 pandemic, but in light of Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd’s deaths, attention has now also been aimed at Taylor.

Taylor was a native of Grand Rapids, Michigan, but moved to Louisville as a teenager, eventually attending the University of Kentucky. After college, she became an emergency medical technician (EMT) and was a first responder who spent time working at the University of Louisville Jewish Hospital, Norton Healthcare and University of Louisville Health.

In an interview with NPR, Taylor’s friends and family described her as “someone who cared for others and loved singing, playing games, cooking, checking up on friends,” which is why a career in healthcare suited her perfectly.

The work schedule of an EMT could be grueling; it was especially so in early March, as worries about coronavirus spread.

But those who knew her say Taylor welcomed the opportunity to give back and to make a difference in someone’s life.

Friends and family agree that Taylor was attracted to a career in health care because she cared about people. 

Tamika Palmer, Taylor’s mother, said that her daughter planned to spend the duration of her career in the healthcare industry, becoming a nurse so that she could care for others on a full-time basis.

“She had a whole plan on becoming a nurse and buying a house and then starting a family. Breonna had her head on straight, and she was a very decent person.” – Tamika Palmer

Sadly, Taylor would not be the only unarmed black person that would lose their life at the hands of the police in recent months. On May 25, George Floyd met a similar, undeserving fate…

Black Death – Part 5: Our Commitment

In the United States, no community has been struck harder by the virus than the black community, even though African Americans only make up 12 percent of the population.

BLACK DEATH - Part 4: Demise of the Black Image

The term “black death” can be defined in more than one way. As the novel coronavirus sweeps the globe, it’s taking its fiercest toll on black people in America, killing African Americans at an egregious rate. However, in the process, black America is suffering another form of fatality: the death of its image.
Black Death Series Part II graphic

Black Death – Part 2: The Socioeconomic and Racial Factors

Black people in America have been disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic for several different reasons, including socioeconomic and racial barriers in America. Former President Barack Obama said it best...

Black Death – Part 1: Our Underlying Health Concerns

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In the 1300s, the Black Death – also known as the Great Plague – wiped out approximately 100 million people across the world. It represented the most devastating pandemic in the history of the world.
What to do if stopped by the police