The term “Black Lives Matter” seems to strum up very emotional feelings lately with the demonstrations and unrest related to the death of George Floyd. Since 2013 it has been used as a rallying slogan and yet there are those who either don’t see or refuse to see the meaning behind it and limit their response to “All Lives Matter”. They do but as in the cartoon the phrase “Black Lives Matter” doesn’t mean only black lives matter or that black lives matter more. It is that black lives have to matter too!!
Now just some random thoughts on my take on current events:
- When you ask someone to explain their worldview it doesn’t mean it is wrong because it doesn’t line up with your own narrative or experience. Open healthy dialogue is what is needed not bloviating why they are wrong.
- Support the notion that Black Lives Matter does not at all mean that you or any other supporters are not supporters of the police. Yes the percentage of bad cops is small but why not create ways to either make them better cops or get them out of the way of the cops who are doing good? During the church scandal the number of priests who were doing bad things was very small but because the systems were in place not to proactively deal with the bad apples for way too long, the church and good priests are still trying to recover. Same with the police. I know very good police officers who want nothing to do with the negative things going on but the systems they are a part of don’t allow for pushing back to make other cops responsible.
- If you believe in the concept that “All Lives Matter”, there has to be a recognition of police forces that things can and should be better. Better training to apprehend suspects and once in custody better training to reestablish the officers ability to back away from their emotions of the situation and ensure everyone is safe. And again looking at the systems in place. Whether we believe the other officers on hand at the scene should be responsible, what is it in the environment of that police force that kept them from speaking out against the actions of Derek Chauvin at the scene.
- You can separate support of the “Black Lives Matter” movement from those groups/websites who have tried to organize under that banner who may have different motives.
- Finally, white people who are out demonstrating should have respect but those out there looting and rioting are the epitome of White Privilege. Whether your actions are opportunistic or trying to incite others, you personally and you collectively won’t have the pay the consequences of continued racist beliefs and actions in this country.