On July 13, 2013, a movement by the name of Black Lives Matter was started. This was created in direct response to the treatment (meaning innocent murders) of black people, most notably Trayvon Martin to start with, which happened nearly a year and a half prior. The purpose of this movement is to express that yes, our lives (I am a black man myself) matter. Not in the sense that it matters more than others, but simply that they matter.
That’s right. A movement had to be created. In 2013. To remind people that we matter.
Now if you do not care for the phrase “Black Lives Matter,” then chances are, that explanation won’t make much difference. Been there and done that.
I will admit that the very first time I heard “Black Lives Matter,” I was a little skeptical too and felt the same. It sounded as if we were saying our lives were “more” important than others. But with a little time, education (along with shutting my mouth and actually listening) I got it. I can humble myself enough to admit that much.
As for those who have a problem with this expression and movement, it’s pretty simple. They believe that this means we’re saying we’re “better” than white people. They think that only our lives matter. They believe we do not care about white people or police murdering them. They wonder why we don’t speak up more about “black-on-black crime” (we do).
So these people need a response. A “clap back.” Oh…I got it…
ALL LIVES MATTER.
Every life is important. Yes, “every” one of them.
But don’t bring it up until people start shouting “Black Lives Matter.”
That’s right. Don’t say “All Lives Matter” when children are being murdered in schools. Don’t say “All Lives Matter” when children are being locked in cages at the border. Don’t say “All Lives Matter” in regard to all the people dying now of COVID-19. Don’t say “All Lives Matter” about the teachers who have to not only figure out how to keep OUR children safe in schools in the event of a mass shooting, but also during a pandemic if they live in an area where schools will be open. Nah, don’t say it during any of those times.
Only say it as a response to “Black Lives Matter.”
Black Lives Matter is not anti-white. The majority of white people even understand this much. So what is missing in those who do not, or at least pretend not to get it?
Let’s say you’re at your mother’s funeral and giving her eulogy. You and your mother were very close. In the middle of that eulogy, someone approaches you, rips the mic from your hands and says, “NO! ALL MOTHERS MATTER!” You would look at this person as if they were on drugs.
This is how asinine it is to say “All Lives Matter.” Acknowledging that one set of lives matter is not the equivalent to saying others do not. Loving my own children does not mean other children do not matter.
So “All Lives Matter” became watered down after a while and lost its effectiveness. Now, it’s time for those who hate “Black Lives Matter” to assume their “battle stations.” You need something to come back with. Well, who is on the other side of the “Black Lives Matter” war room?
Well now you need something to support them then, along with something else meant to shut down this “Black Lives Matter” garbage. Ah, yes…
BLUE LIVES MATTER.
I want to preface this part by saying this. My sister-in-law is a police officer. In absolutely NO WAY do I condone attacks on the police. That is not the way to get things done. I do not support physical attacks on law enforcement. All I want is accountability. That’s it. That’s all most of us are looking for. We are NOT on the side of those who go after cops, shoot at them, destroy their property, etc. That is the wrong answer.
With that being said, here is why I believe “Blue Lives Matter” is racist.
First of all, if “Black Lives Matter” is a problem, then “Blue Lives Matter” should be as well. That’s easy. If you are okay replacing “Black” with “All,” it should be the same in regard to “Blue.” If you don’t like “Black Lives Matter” so you say “All Lives Matter,” but you’re okay with “Blue Lives Matter,” then there is only one part you have a problem with.
It is blatant hypocrisy. No more, no less.
On top of that, “blue” is not a race. It is an occupation.
That does not reduce the importance of police officers, but what I mean by that is, a police officer could take off his or her uniform and most would not even know that person is a cop. No one would know that he or she is “blue.”
However, as a black man, I don’t get to “take off” anything and people not know my race. A race that for many, MANY years has been treated as second class. Less than human. Stereotyped. Segregated. Discriminated against. People know I’m black as soon as I walk into a room, no matter what I have on.
A lot of people in this country would be perfectly fine with a police officer murdering me. I do not have a police record, but I’m sure they will find something wrong with something I did at some point in my life to justify the murder. Then again, I run for exercise in the mornings. Ah, that’s it. So if it happens then, they could always say I was “running away from something” and that I “should have stopped.” Running equals guilty if you are a black man. I almost forgot.
Not to mention, let me go to my sister-in-law again. She is Latina. The same people who peddle “Blue Lives Matter” when they see her in uniform would be shouting for her to “go back to her country,” that she is here illegally (even though she is Puerto Rican; yes, we’re still having to explain that to the peanut gallery) upon hearing her speak Spanish to someone in public. And see…that is who she is before she is a cop.
So let’s be real here, since everyone is all about that these days. My sister-in-law and many other cops of color out there would be viewed as perfectly fine by certain people as long as they are wearing the police uniform. But if these same individuals took that uniform off, again, the very same ones who say “Blue Lives Matter” to counter the “Black Lives Matter” movement would be calling them everything in the book. The true colors from these individuals are not being shown while folks like my sister-in-law are in uniform. It is shown when they are is not.
So does that make it racist? People of color are still being viewed as less than human, even to the point that police officers murdering us can be justified. Random white people on the street can murder us and that be justified also, as evidenced with Ahmaud Arbery. Random white people (what up, Karen) can call the police on us when we’re doing nothing wrong and it would be okay.
Blue Lives Matter. All Lives Matter. These are used, not to signify any sense of equality, but to simply shut down the black voice. That is all there is to it. Otherwise, the same ones who want to stop “Black Lives Matter” should be saying the same about “Blue Lives Matter.” But you don’t.
That’s because “Blue Lives” matter more to you than “Black Lives” do.
Black Lives Matter is not anti-white, nor is it anti-police. That would be like saying that because we hate child abuse, that means we are anti-parent. No.
Now some reading this (if you’ve made it this far and are not foaming at the mouth) may see this as anti-cop and me saying that you are racist if you support police officers. Wrong again.
I support police officers. Many of us in the black community do. What we do not support is police brutality and racism, especially coming from the very individuals who were sworn to protect and serve the very people they are murdering. This is not an all cop thing. But the ones who are doing wrong and the others who are keeping quiet about it need to go. It’s that simple. We know that more are doing the right thing. We get it.
There is nothing wrong with supporting the police. But if we are straight-up telling you that we have a problem with being murdered, if we have to practically beg and plead that you do not kill us, if we have to put our foot down and say that we matter, not to express superiority, but merely to defend ourselves from the harsh consequences of a racist system meant to keep us reduced to what we were not even sixty years ago, and your response is along the lines of “Ah, shut up…BLUE LIVES MATTER,” that means you are not simply supporting the good police.
It means that you are okay with all of what is wrong with police and law enforcement, especially when it comes to the horrible things these bad individuals do to us as black people. If you know all these things are going on and you cannot fix your mouths to simply say that, but only “BLUE LIVES MATTER” as a way to shut us up, that means you see nothing wrong or are at least pretending to.
That makes you a racist in my book.
End of story.
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