The Human Heart and the Unspeakable Death of George Floyd

I am not American.  Nor am I black, nor male.

But my heart broke in a new way while watching the slow, agonized death of George Floyd, as for nine minutes a police officer kneeled on his neck, crushing his face into the pavement.  (1)

I did not sleep that night.  And as with so many others, it’s still there when I awake each morning.

Men being led to execution often call out for their mothers. Millions watching this video heard Floyd’s desperate cries for his mother.

The human heart has no defence against such cold-blooded injustice.  Hearts around the planet are breaking for George Floyd.

Justice is a core value in the fabric of life:  Even domestic animals treated unjustly will look at us in bewilderment.

Trappist monk Thomas Merton coined the phrase, “the unspeakable”.  It is a void in the human heart.  Empty of compassion, the vacuum fills with violence.  It is what we saw in the officers who killed Floyd. (2)

It is also what we saw in the murder of JFK, orchestrated by the CIA. (3)

We cannot unsee what we witnessed in the Floyd video.  This unspeakable murder is the only story that has broken through the Covid-19 headlines – showing that justice is as important as life itself.

Officials need to understand that the protests across America represent a core value of humanity:  The need for justice that is embedded in the human heart.

The riots will continue until this understanding of our humanity is declared – and acted upon in an unprecedented and powerfully open way.


Note to readers: please click the share buttons above or below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.


  1. “George Floyd Murdered in Daylight,”
  2. Ross Labrie, “Thomas Merton on the Unspeakable,”
  3. James W. Douglass, “JFK and the Unspeakable:Why He Died and Why it Matters,” Touchstone, 2010.

Comment on Global Research Articles on our Facebook page

Become a Member of Global Research

Articles by: Elizabeth Woodworth

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are of sole responsibility of the author(s). The Centre for Research on Globalization will not be responsible for any inaccurate or incorrect statement in this article. The Centre of Research on Globalization grants permission to cross-post Global Research articles on community internet sites as long the source and copyright are acknowledged together with a hyperlink to the original Global Research article. For publication of Global Research articles in print or other forms including commercial internet sites, contact: [email protected] contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of "fair use" in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than "fair use" you must request permission from the copyright owner.

For media inquiries: [email protected]