Black Lives Matter protesters gather in Trafalgar Square, London, May 2020
John Sibley / Reuters

A global audience witnessed the lynching of George Floyd, on May 25, at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer. Floyd’s agonizing death by suffocation, his pleas for help, and his final words, “I can’t breathe”—recorded in a cell phone video and promptly shared on Facebook by a quick-witted young bystander—have been viewed billions of times and have unleashed a shock wave of outrage and revulsion that continues to reverberate around the world.

Murders of black people in the United States by law enforcement officers are not uncommon, and thanks to near-universal access to video-enabled smartphones and

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