Why Saying 'All Lives Matter' Isn't Effective, Just Embarrassing
Ignorance is the death of peace.
Pretending that a problem doesn’t exist, watering it down or sugar coating it is never the answer to fixing it.
Silencing people who care about an issue will only draw our society back and inhibit our movement forward.
Black lives matter.
This is an important movement that we cannot shy away from and pretend its casualties are just a part of everyday police work.
No, all police officers are not bad, but yes there is a real problem in this nation with police brutality against people of color.
The black lives matter movement is not aimed at shaming all policemen and women. It is about bringing awareness to the overwhelming problem of police brutality against black Americans.
Silencing activists by saying “all lives matter” is only counterproductive.
Saying black lives matter doesn’t mean white lives don’t matter; it doesn’t mean Asian or Latino lives don’t matter.
Yes, all lives matter, but right now, there is consistent violence against black people in our country, so this particular movement is aimed at eradicating that.
It is important to realize the facts that exist in our country, There is an elevated amount of police violence against people of color.
CNN commentator, Donna Brazile, said it best when she said:
Of course ALL lives matter. But there is no serious question about the value of the life of a young white girl or boy. Sadly, there is a serious question -- between gang violence and this police violence -- about the value of the life of a young black girl or boy. So those who are experiencing the pain and trauma of the black experience in this country don't want their rallying cry to be watered down with a generic feel-good catchphrase.
We have to remember the individual cases where people of color have died at the hands of police brutality.
Oscar Grant, an unarmed black man, was shot and killed by a white cop; Michael Brown, an unarmed black man was shot and killed by a white cop; Laquan McDonald a 17-year old, who posed no threat to the police, was shot and killed by a white cop who unloaded an entire magazine into the boy.
It is an undeniable fact that black people experience police violence more than any other group in the US.
Statistics reveal the truth: Police killed almost five black people per every million black residents of the US, compared with about two per million for both white and Hispanic victims.
So yes, all lives matter, that is undeniable.
But, what needs the most attention right now in the state of our country is the black lives matter movement.
Imagine having your father, brother, girlfriend, sister or best friend ripped away from you for no reason. And the person who committed the act was just let free with a slap on the wrist?
In the Oscar Grant case, his murderer only spent 11 months in prison in total. How is that justice?
How do you think his mother feels knowing that her son’s murderer spent less than one year in prison?
His daughter and girlfriend are left thinking about this and hurting about this every single day.
The worst thing we can do is dismiss their pain and dismiss their message by saying, “Well, all lives matter.”
No one should feel that his or her worth is less because of the color of his or her skin, and right now in America, that is what people of color are crying out for us to understand.
It is time we start demanding that from our justice system.