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For the past several years in the United States there has been a gargantuan unrest when it comes to police brutality and injustice towards the African American community. In 2013 after the acquittal of then twenty-eight year old George Zimmerman who fatally shot African American seventeen year old Trayvon Martin, an unarmed teen walking home from the convenient store did the Black Lives Matter movement come about, Shortly after the Black Lives Matter campaign started a counter slogan saying ‘All Lives Matter‘ began its anti-slogan.
Being an African American myself I‘m here to say every time you say ‘All Lives Matter’ in retort to Black Lives Matter your being an accidental racist. This statement is a response, therefore it’s opposite to and not in favor of; well this is the one time I will say: you are wrong Many disagree and without knowing one would think, ‘well yes all lives do matter’, those that will argue this most likely don’t know the significance of Black Lives Mattert By giving a look at Black Lives Matter and what it stands for, looking at the statistics and evidence, seeing the heavy difference between the two and my own take;
I will let you know why saying All Lives Matter in reply to Black Lives Matter is a momentous racist phrase, To Dive into the argument one has to know what Black Lives Matter is and what it stands fort The movement started in the summer of 2013 by three community organizers named: Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors and Opal Tometi, they met through the “Black Organizers for Leadership” group (Wikipedia contributors) After the acquittal of George Zimmerman they were trying to find a way to respond to the devolution of black lives, turning to social media they posted a Facebook post titled ‘A Love Note to Black People’ stating; ‘Our Lives Matter, Black Lives Matter.
Then it was reposted with the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter and the online campaign was born (Wikipedia Contributors). The first time I heard the slogan, just hearing the phrase I understood and whole heartedly defended it because [ already knew what it stood for.
When the statement Black Lives Matter is said it is not being stated that ‘only black lives matter’ nor is it meant to imply Black Lives Matter more than any other race and a very important fact is it is not anti-police, It simply means black lives matter, too; it’s the fact that people forget about the ‘too’. Just look at the word matter, defined as to be of importance and to be of meaning. Judith Butler a professor from UCLA who is a white American and on the board of Black Lives Matter said “If we jump too quickly to the universal formulation of ‘All Lives Matter’, then we miss the fact that black people have not yet been involved in the idea of ‘All Lives’ (qtd in.Daniel)“. Black Lives Matter is highlighting that there is demonstrable evidence that Black Lives Matter less that white lives to the criminaljustice system The facts are out there at enormous rates and they shine so bright it’s hard not to notice.
You may be thinking where all these facts are and I‘m happy to tell you a few out of the thousands that are out here, if you don’t already agree that there is a problem with police brutality and that the government treats certain racial groups differently I will say that you are absolutely, categorically wrong i even understand why most of All Lives Matter supporters are predominantly white, it’s not their fault they haven’t had the best seat in the house to see it, you can’t witness the gross injustices committed when it’s not in your community, your neighborhood. Did you know that 69% of victims of police brutality in the US who are African American were suspected of no crime or non-violent crime and unarmed (Vittana)? For instance in the summer of 2014 fortyethree year old Eric Garner from New York was taken down to the ground and restrained by several police officers and put in a banned chokehold while he was not resisting only telling officers “I Can’t Breath” died by then hands of the law (Library). Even cattght on camera for the whole world to see and it being ruled a homicide, no indictment and no conviction in result no justice.
Police are supposed to protect the law and the people however looking at more statistics say otherwise being 61% of police officers state they don’t always report serious abuse the observe (Vittana). More to see is 52% say it is not unusual for law officials to turn a blind eye to improper conduct of other officers (Vittana) Looking further in depth is even more disheartening is in 2016 308 black lives in the US were killed by police and 99% conducted in no criminal charges or convictions (Mapping Police Violence) Did you know that only 5% or police departments in the US contribute statistics to a report that was created to track brutality on civilians, why?: its voluntary (Mapping Police Violence) Am 1 giving a tasted to why Black Lives are trying to be a part of All Lives. There is no comparing All Lives Matte to Black Lives Matter, it‘s not a completion nor is itjust black people pulling the race card because of our history, African Americans just want to be equal and apart of being treated like the Americans they and all US citizens are I came across an essay that criticized Black Lives Matter and said followers of the movement are segregating them self‘s and “They might not believe in that way but that’s the way it looks because the name of their movement (qtd, In Zaeem)”.
That statement fumes with ignorance , saying ‘the way it looks’, is someone trying to change the statement and make it into a different meaning that only black lives matteri Sorry to say that’s incorrect, breaking it down when one says All Lives Matter in a direct response to Black Lives Matter you are saying black lives don’t matter and you‘re ignoring the problem Let’s say we have pandas and monkeys and we need to spend more time and attention to the pandas right now because they are endangered and we say save the pandas, it’s not saying forget about the monkeys we are just saying pandas at this time and place need our help because their being targeted and treated in a certain way Would you go to a breast cancer awareness event yelling ‘all diseases need awareness’? Would you go to a stranger’s funeral shouting ‘I too have felt losses? I doubt anyone would have the audacity to, meanwhile All Lives Matter campaign is anti-Black Lives Matter and Black Lives Matter is anti—death with only wanting to be able to step outside take a breath and be equals as thy neighbor.
The bottom line is that African Americans are calling attention to the specific problem of ongoing and systemic cheapening of their lives. Taking the black lives matter phrase and seeing it as ‘only black lives matter and retorting with All Lives Matter, for one your changing the statement into a racial debate and two you are now saying black lives don’t matter; your saying: Shut up, Understand that as a direct response, All Lives Matter is essentially saying that we shouldjust ignore the problem so before you go saying all lives to Black Lives Matter followers think about family If you have children as a parent you teach your kids about the world and how to stay safe out there with the dangers that can come about, Well do you have to tell your kids that because of their melanin they are at higher risk of death for no reason by the protectors we call for help on; i don’t believe so? Ask twelve year old Tamir Rice Parents if they even got a chance to before he was shot and killed by police as he “posed a threat (Library, CNN)?
Ever hear of Alton Sterling thirty-seven from Baton Rouge, wonder if he ever told his kids before he was shot several times to death while pinned to the ground by police, unarmed (Library CNN). Listen to the four year old baby girl say how scared she is of men with badges because they shot her daddy Philando Castile so many times with her in the backseat and mother in the car; in this instance he was armed and let police know he had a weapon in his car with is licenses to carry and when told to get his hands up he did as told and was shot for it, reaching up not over (Library CNN} I’m saying to you know when you say All Lives Matter your saying it in a direct response to the phrase Black Lives Matter and all the organization is trying to accomplish is what you’re saying back to them, and it is to be a part of ‘All Lives‘i At the end of the day if that statement were to be true then there would not be a need for Black Lives Matter.
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