The video of George Floyd murder that went viral in a jiffy turned millions of hearts. It sparked an outcry across the world particularly among people of colour, Hispanics and Asians who live with similar experiences
I do not have any hesitation to borrow the title of my article from British philosopher Karl Popper, though he used it in one of his books to emphasise another issue in the middle of the twentieth century. The three giant philosophers in history, Plato, Hegel and Karl Marx had been the centre of his criticism.
Popper's writings stung many. He wrote, "It springs rather from my conviction that, if our civilisation is to survive, we must break with the habit of deference to great men."
But I wish to bring the issue of hatred in open society - the America society - that shocked the world conscience very recently when a white police officer from Minnesota knelt on the neck of a black man and took his life away under the open sky.
This is racism - the most heinous disease afflicting the history of the US and which returns time and again, in one form or another, to destroy the sanctity of the American society. In this society, slavery, xenophobia, and racism has taken its ugliest form since the country's independence.
Thomas Jefferson, the third president and Founding Father of America, understood the tyrannical face of slavery in his society. In his book titled Notes on the State of Virginia (1785) he indicated how slavery can destroy American stature. The cautionary note stands true even after hundreds of years.
George Floyd groaned in a desperate voice "I can't breathe", "I can't breathe" as he was trying to free himself from Derek Chauvin's knee, a police officer of Minneapolis, who had held George in that position behind a car for eight minutes. It was not confirmed whether George carried a fake dollar and the police did not have sufficient evidence.
The video of George Floyd murder that went viral in a jiffy turned millions of hearts. It sparked an outcry across the world particularly among people of colour, Hispanics and Asians who live with similar experience.
Floyd pleaded for his children and mother, but nobody dared to save him as he was fenced by a white police officer. It felt as if his piteous voice was resonating to the unbounded sky lashing out the open society.
Thousands of people in America are grieved by the Covid-19 pandemic, which has already killed over a hundred thousand people. In addition, the unemployment rate has increased and the misery of the common people are mounting with every passing day.
The pandemic impacted America, since it is the first time in the history of the country, that it is facing such an unexpected jolt. Looking back, even the Second World War could not put America down amid nuclear war clouds.
Currently, as Covid-19 is lashing the world super-power, George Floyd's killing has added a new heap to the American distress.
Thousands of people are protesting the murder which has turned violent and extended over larger areas of New York, a city which is home to people of different races.
Media reports said that some buildings were set on fire, others were looted and ransacked.
US President Donald Trump, a successor of a black president, failed to extinguish the fire of non-white mind ahead of his second presidential race -- the US Election 2020, which is scheduled for the first week of November.
Trump's contender Joe Biden, a Democratic Party presidential candidate expressed his utter dismay over the killing and termed it "a follow up of systematic racism inspired by Donald Trump".
Biden said, "We are a country with an open wound. None of us can turn away".
Racial animosity has deep roots in American history. I will introduce my readers to a recently published book titled American Poison: How Racial Hostility Destroyed Our Promise, written by Eduardo Porter, a gifted economic reporter of The New York Times.
Eduardo described how racial animus or discrimination stopped social health of American life . He also found that racial polarisation and social fragmentation broke the multicultural life of America.
Finally, Eduardo showed that this way of acrimonious relationship between the heater and heated are poisoning the American history.
In 2014 Michael Brown an African American teenager was shot dead by a white police man in Ferguson, Missouri - the incident had captured global attention with extreme abhorrence.
The same elegy echoed after six years with growing protest demanding racial justice or equality and systematic reform of the existing laws.
Meanwhile, a campaigner against police violence termed the incident as the century-old virus of white supremacy.
Former President Barak Obama, seen as a saviour of black people, had created history a few years ago. To many people, his Presidency was a groundbreaking event and they hoped that the history of America would be rewritten as animosity between the colours would end.
Following George Floyd murder, Obama said "This should not be normal in 2020 in America".
Exactly, how the situation comes under a tragedy Barak Obama's further remorseful statement proves it.
"We have to remember that for millions of Americans …being treated differently on account of race is tragically, painfully, maddeningly normal – whether it is while dealing with the healthcare system, or interacting with the criminal justice system, or jogging down the street, or just watching birds in the park," Obama added.
Now, going back to the context, i. e. enemies of open societies.
Societies are based on liberalism, conscience, values, political commitment, democracy, patience and multi cultural connectivity may guarantee good functioning of a state.
Concepts like racial or religious animus are fundamentally abominable for which many countries are in continuous infliction. Open society makes a plenty of space for her citizen where people can breathe freely. An open society creates social evenness for all regardless the status and beliefs of an individual.
Thomas Jefferson was one of main architects of framing up the constitutional history of America. He was influenced by two philosophers Thomas Pain and John Locke. While writing the declaration of independence he wrote "life, liberty and pursuit of happiness" - a phase from John Locke's Two Treatise on Government.
This is liberty that ensures absolute freedom and disowns all sorts of vile and miserable misadventure. If it is not assured, many black, Asian, Hispano or others will be killing on the street.
Dr Siddhartha Shankar Joarder, is a Professor, Department of Philosophy, Jagannath University, Dhaka