Minneapolis’ Black Community Is Also Reeling From the Coronavirus

Pastor Brain Herron helped pass out masks to North Minneapolis residents in April.Jerry Holt/Getty

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As residents of Minneapolis mourn and protest the death of George Floyd, the city’s Black community is also reeling from the coronavirus. Just as Floyd’s killing by a white police officer has resurfaced the effects of structural racism, the virus’ disproportionate impact has highlighted the lack of equitable healthcare access and other risk factors that have made African Americans more vulnerable to COVID-19. 

As we have reported, in many states, Black Americans’ rates of infection and death have been much higher than their share of the population. Similarly, Minneapolis’ Black population has been disproportionately infected by the coronavirus. As of May 29, 34 percent of people who were infected with the virus in the city were Black, though only 18 percent of the city’s population is Black. While the city’s population is 64 percent white, 24 percent of those infected with the virus were white.

So far, 5,361 Black people have been infected by the virus in Minnesota. Minneapolis is one of six cities in the country where more than 10 percent of test results have come back as positive, according to White House Coronavirus Task Force Coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx

Commenting on the fires lit during last night’s protests, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz (D) said, “The ashes are symbolic of decades and generations of pain, of anguish.” The statistics above are another sign of the pain that continues to go untreated.  

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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