Why #BlackLivesMatter Trumps All Lives Matter
Why #BlackLivesMatter Trumps #AllLivesMatter
What comes to mind when you hear or read “Black Lives Matter”? Anger, frustration, hatred or guilt? Odds are you didn’t say sympathy, love and understanding.
I am proud of the movement so far; I say so far because I agree with activities that it has spearheaded to this point. If you think #BlackLivesMatteras a bunch of blacks and minorities protesting in the streets – then you are only seeing a small portion of the movement. It’s the New Civil Rights movement. The original got Black people so far but it did not take us to the “Mountain Top” that Dr. King mentioned in his speech, I say this because just like in the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s we are seeing minorities mistreated by a system that does not value or treat everyone fairly. Basically, blacks are still being killed by cops, tormented on our college campuses, shot at in church and denied opportunities.
Black Lives Matter is a movement started by 3 African America females after the tragic death of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch guy. It quickly gained national attention after the death of Mike Brown in Ferguson, MO, who was shot and killed by a police office. Brown was a suspect in a robbery and fought with the police office before ultimately being shot several times. After this incident we saw professional athletes speak out and even show support for the movement. People like Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls wore a “Black Lives Matter” t-shirt during warm-ups before a game. Other athletes followed, including LeBron James. Some NFL Players from the St. Louis Rams even took to the field during team announcements with their hands raised – a gesture synonymous with the Black Lives Matter movement, indicating that they are unarmed just like Trayvon and Mike.
Like most of you, at first, I saw Black Lives Matter as a social campaign built to capitalize on the anger of many blacks and minorities who have seen these injustices playout in the street of their community for years. The riots in Missouri and other black communities made national news and headlines and it was easy to associate Black Lives Matter with violence and looting. It was uncomfortable to watch, for all of us.
But then we saw Eric Gardner get put in a chokehold by cops on the streets of New York with Gardner saying “I can’t breathe” as died right in front of our eyes, that’s when things changed. Gardner was an innocent man, not accused of a crime, he had just broken up a fight and when the police arrived the others ran. Well Gardner was a large man who didn’t run because he had done nothing wrong. Unlike Mike Brown or Trayvon Martin, the situation was much clearer, we saw everything – there was no debate as to what really happened – and we called bullshit!
After that incident we saw peaceful protests in New York with Black Lives Matter posters and t-shirts and for the first time, we saw just as many whites, Latinos, Hispanic, Asian and other races protesting side by side. The country had had enough of seeing Black people killed in the streets for no reason at all.
You would think that would be enough, 3 black men killed by cops and a cop wonnabe but it wasn’t, not even close, look at these names. Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, Freddie Gray, Sandra Bland, Sam DuBose, Eric Gardner, Walter Scott, Christian Taylor and Laquan McDonald.
This is important, so yes, I am going to belabor it. The reason why I am writing about Race all year long on this blog, CostofWork, is because of the events leading up to tragic deaths of these people and the church goers in South Carolina, by a young white man who said he went into that church and killed those people to start a race war. Thank GOD he failed. Or did he?
The way these people died has fueled Black Lives Matter and believe me there are more. When researching for this article and googling terms like “black teen killed by cops”, the list was longer than I had even imaged.
Personally, Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, Eric Gardner and Sam DuBose are the most horrific examples of disparate treatment by the police and judicial system that I have witnessed since the Rodney King beating back in the 90s. And when you think about Trayvon Martin and Mike Brown, maybe they were combative, maybe they were complicit but neither had due process and both did not deserve death.
Still don’t think something is wrong? Still think the playing field is level? Still think these killings were justified? Consider this.
In 2012, the same year Trayvon Martin was murdered by Zimmerman, John Holmes, 24 years old, goes into a crowded movie theater in Aurora Colorado, during the viewing of “Batman: The Dark Knight Rises”, and shot up the place. He killed 12 people and wounded 70 others and he was arrested without as much as a black-eye.
In 2015, James Lewis Dear, Jr. went to a planned parenthood facility and shot up the place, he also got into a shootout with police, killing a police officer and 2 civilians. He was arrested without incident.
In 2015, Dylann Roof, 24, went into a Black Church in South Carolina during weekly Bible study and after sitting and praying with the church goers, he stood up and opened fire, killing 9 people. He was arrested without incident and it is reported that the cops took him to get a burger (not as a celebration move but just an act of kindness)
In 2015, John Russell Houser, 59, said he was inspired by Dylann Roof when he went on a shooting rampage at a Louisiana movie theater where he killed 2 people and wounded 9 others. At least he did us all a favor and killed himself – so no, he wasn’t arrested.
If you’ve lost count, that’s 4 angry misled white men who actually killed people but were arrested without harm, except Houser who shot himself, while Sandra Bland in Texas and Sam BuBose in Cincinnati were stopped for minor traffic violations and ended up dead; Bland mysteriously, and DuBose shot in the head by a University of Cincinnati cop.
Tamir Rice was a 12-year-old boy playing with a toy gun in an empty park when the cops rolled up on him and immediately opened fire. He hadn’t harmed anyone. The park was empty!
Eric Gardner did not have weapon on him, he was not hurting anyone he was not a danger to society, yet he was put in a chokehold by several cops and died.
Walter Scott,50-year-old unarmed black man, was shot in the back in South Carolina by a police officer who said he had a weapon however witness cellphone video proved that to be a lie. Scott was pulled over for a taillight and had warrant for child support. He ran from the cop for fear of being arrest on those open warrants. He did not deserve to be shot in the back. The cop and his black partner tried to stage the crime scene to cover up the crime.
Here are a couple more, a young black man, Christian Taylor, breaks into a car dealership at night and damages some vehicles, the police arrive and although the young man was wrong and should have been arrested and jailed, he did not have weapon and he was not hurting anyone, yet he was shot and killed.
Then there was the 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, who had a knife and was breaking into cars (allegedly) in Chicago, IL, when police arrived. He ran away with a 3-inch knife in hand. At one point he was running down an empty street when police blocked off the road and 2 officers arrived with guns drawn. Laquan was shot 16 times.
Was Laquan and Christian wrong? Yes, absolutely, but did they deserve death? No and when you compare their crimes to those of Holmes, Roof, Lewis and Houser – the answer has got to be hell no.
Let me make this clear, I do not want to see any group of people killed by anyone, time and time again. I don’t want to see blacks killed by other blacks, whites killed by whites, Asians killed by Asians, Indians killed by Indians and especially cops killing anyone unless it is unavoidable because they are supposed to protect us all.
Police interactions with a black suspects should not end in death but that’s what’s happening all too often.
If you think All Lives Matter is more important than Black Lives Matter then you are probably harboring some sort of irrational guilt or inability to sympathize with others. Because under no circumstance should a person be able to kill other human beings (those angry white men) and not to be killed while another group seems to be killed for a little as changing lanes without signaling or driving without a front license plate. And under no circumstance should an unarmed person (Black or White) be shot, choked or beaten by cops.
Scales of justice are not balanced. Whenever a 16-year-old kid white kid can kill 4 people while driving intoxicated and avoid jail time by using an Affluenza defense (basically say he was spoiled and pampered by his rich parents and didn’t know right from wrong) but minority kids goes to jail for non-violent/criminal drug offenses, the scales are unbalanced. Our kids need a Poorffluenza defense.
Do #AllLiveMatter? Yes, yes of course. All life is precious and should be spared when possible but that’s the point, black lives are being snuffed out, time and time again, live on social media by the hands of cops for little or no reason at all. How is it possible to engage in a shoot-out with police, kill a cop and still not be killed and black man gets shot for walking down an empty street, or playing in the park, or just standing on the corner. And killed by police!!!
Dear Police, I know you have a tough job to do full of judgement calls, I know you put your life in danger everyday but I also know every situation is a not life or death situation, where are the rubber bullets? Where is the mace? Where are the tasers? Where is the humanity for the black and minority communities?
PS. I have seen and heard of the attackers who are targeting cops and trying to kill them, I DO NOT AGREE, LIKE OR SUPPORT that ignorant hateful bullshit either. Yes. Blue Lives Matter too!
Black Live Matter is the new Civil Rights Movement, it’s not just demonstrating in the streets, it has helped college student get justice from on campus racism. He has helped removed racially insensitive administrations from local office. It was among Time magazine finalist for Person of the Year. It’s huge, it’s important and it totally trumps All Lives Matter in every way.
*This just in, in the Democratic Debate on January 17th, moderator Lester Holt asked the candidates about Black Lives Matter and the shooting of Walter Scott and Hiliary Clinton responded and mentioned the “systemic racism in our criminal justice system”.*
My next article will be “Why Do White Men Seem So Angry?” Even the rich ones seem really, really angry.
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