Oprah Gives Up 'O' Magazine Cover for First Time Ever to Breonna Taylor

July 30, 2020

    For the first time in 20 years, Oprah Winfrey has decided to hand off the usual "O" magazine cover photo of herself with Breonna Taylor, the young woman who was fatally shot by police who stormed into her apartment on March 13.

    The issue will be available on newsstands on Aug. 11. 

    According to USA Today, editor-in-chief, Lucy Kaylin, Winfrey, and the O magazine team decided that it was important for the brand to raise awareness about police brutality against Black Americans.

    Kaylin says the team began discussions about the cover change following the death of George Floyd, the 46-year-old Black man who died May 25 after a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck.

    Winfrey shared the cover on her Instagram account with a caption explaining the decision to honor Taylor on the cover.

    "Breonna Taylor. She was just like me. She was just like you. And like everyone who dies unexpectedly, she had plans. Plans for a future filled with responsibility and work and friends and laughter. I think about Breonna Taylor often," Oprah wrote in her caption.

    "We can’t be silent," the emotional caption went on. "We have to use whatever megaphone we have to cry for justice. And that is why Breonna Taylor is on the cover of @oprahmagazine. The September issue honors her life and the life of every other Black woman whose life has been taken too soon."

    On June 13, Mayor Greg Fischer announced that Louisville Metro Police terminated Officer Brett Hankison, one of three LMPD officers in the shooting death of Breonna Taylor on March 13.

    Officer Hankison is accused of "blindly" firing 10 rounds into Taylor's apartment. 

    LMPD's interim police chief, Robert Schroeder, wrote a letter to Hankison laying out the charges. "I find your conduct a shock to the conscience," Schroeder wrote, adding, "I am alarmed and stunned you used deadly force in this fashion.

    "The result of your action seriously impedes the Department's goal of providing the citizens of our city with the most professional law enforcement agency possible. I cannot tolerate this type of conduct by any member of the Louisville Metro Police Department," he said. "Your conduct demands your termination."

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