George Floyd and that $20 bill

It all started when a store clerk called police, accusing George Floyd of trying to pass a counterfeit $20 bill. In all the vast Floyd coverage, no one seems to have examined that $20 bill story. Floyd’s guilt is just assumed.

But why? While Floyd had once been a lawbreaker, that was long past, and he’d been living straight. Counterfeiting is actually a pretty elaborate operation, and nothing ties Floyd to a counterfeiting ring. If the bill was fake, the far likelier explanation is that Floyd himself was the innocent victim of someone else’s passing it off on him.

But why even assume the bill was counterfeit? Has anyone actually examined it? Coin hobbyists like me are always regaling each other with stories of the ignorance of store clerks when it comes to the money in circulation. Just before the Floyd story, a local coin club member had told of trying to use a $20 bill at McDonald’s and likewise  being threatened with arrest. He was forced to walk to a bank to have the bill verified. It merely happened to be an older issue slightly different from more current ones — but still perfectly legitimate.

Good thing my friend is white.


One Response to “George Floyd and that $20 bill”

  1. Colin Says:

    The biggest argument for his innocence was hanging around after being challenged. As a black man, he would surely know that he was going to be unfairly targetted, and at least harrassed by police, if not jailed, which was surely the likeliest thing to happen. He was either stupid or innocent or both. Of course, perhaps his vehicle would not start. Guilt was surely that last thing his behaviour was showing.

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