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 George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer at the corner of
38th Street and Chicago Avenue. The location is significant. It lies in a
part of the city wedged between two freeways and not far from an unofficial
boundary separating neighborhoods with large populations of black and
Latino residents from the mostly white neighborhoods to the south. For
decades, this boundary was legally enforced through covenants limiting who
could live where. America’s brand of urban inequality relies on such
barricades to ensure that all kinds of problems—of which aggressive
policing is just one—are concentrated in particular places. Floyd’s death
has created a national uproar over police violence against black Americans,
but changing police tactics is not enough. The barricades have to come
down, too.
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