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State Rep. John Lovick: Events since George Floyd's death are 'a turning point for all of us'

House Speaker Pro-tem Rep. John Lovick, D-Mill Creek, presides over the Washington House, Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2020, at the Capitol in Olympia.
Ted S. Warren
/
The Associated Press
House Speaker Pro-tem Rep. John Lovick, D-Mill Creek, presides over the Washington House, Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2020, at the Capitol in Olympia.

Author's note: After the death of George Floyd, we had a series of conversations about race. This one, with state Rep. John Lovick, still sticks with me. Lovick's background — having grown up in the Jim Crow south, and a long career in law enforcement — provided a unique perspective on a moment when the nation was focused on the intersections of race and policing. I appreciated that he spoke from the heart. It's not easy to do that under the best of circumstances, let alone at such a painful time for so many people. And while there was pain in this conversation, I also heard hope. (This story originally aired June 4, 2020.)

State Rep. John Lovick spent more than 30 years in uniform with the Washington State Patrol. He was the Snohomish County sheriff and then the county executive. He's also Black, and he grew up in Louisiana in the 1950s and 60s.

And he’s been watching and listening to the chants and the voices and the protests we've seen in Washington state and around the country over the last several days. 

He told KNKX All Things Considered host Ed Ronco that he still believes that America’s soul can be redeemed. Hear an extended version of their conversation, below.

john_lovick_edit_long_for_web__1_.mp3
Extended version of the interview with State Rep. John Lovick.

Ed Ronco came to KNKX in October 2013 as producer and reporter for KNKX’s Morning Edition. Ed started in public radio in 2009 at KCAW in Sitka, Alaska, where he covered everything from city government, to education, crime, science, the arts and more. Prior to public radio, Ed worked in newspapers, including four years at the South Bend (Ind.) Tribune, where he covered business, then politics and government.