What is Meant When People Say, Black Lives Matter

Photo credit: Clay Banks

Over the past several years, Black Lives Matter has come to the forefront of roundtable discussions. The conversation is long overdue, but the bigger issue is why now? After decades of racism in America and around the world, why is it now that so many people want to push black lives matter?

The best answer to that question is why not? Why shouldn’t black lives matter? Black people in America have been oppressed, pushed to the wayside, neglected, and mistreated for too long and enough is enough.

Don’t Take Things Out of Context

Now I am a white man and I have never and will never know or understand what black people experience. I would be nearly 100% certain that every white person I know can say the same.

When people hear “black lives matter”, the first thing that comes to mind is black people- naturally. The next thing that comes to mind is one of two things. Either they believe black lives do in fact matter, or, they believe all lives matter.

Here lies the issue. Saying black lives matter is not to say that all other lives do not matter or are less important. Black lives matter is to show the mistreatment and the two sides of America that have plagued black people for decades and decades.

Do not take the mantra black lives matter out of context. It is meant to heighten your awareness, not enrage the hate inside of you.

The first 60 seconds of this video are the most important -

Don’t Be Part of the Problem

Too often we see posts on social media pushing all lives matter, all this matters, all that matters. The issue is that this is not a joke. Black people are dying at the hands of law enforcement. Read that again. Law Enforcement. Why is it that black people in custody are so mistreated compared to other races and when they want to stand up and raise awareness, they’re essentially told to shut up, be quiet, don’t commit a crime, and move on?

Studies done by the Pew Research Center found that “both black and white Americans say black people are treated less fairly than whites in dealing with the police and by the criminal justice system as a whole. 87% of blacks and 61% of whites said the U.S. criminal justice system treats black people less fairly.”

So why is it that so many people believe black people are in fact mistreated by the criminal justice system but won’t recognize the black lives movement? Is it fear of being picked on or ridiculed for what, being a good human being? For sticking up for people whose voices are being muffled now more than ever? It’s very easy to say things matter. It’s much more difficult to take action and stand with the movement. Helping make other people aware of the issue at hand is needed now more than ever.

Do Your Research

It is imperative now more than ever that we conduct our own research. Please, and I emphasize this, please do your research. America has been divided whether you want to admit it or not. Democrat vs. Republican. Left vs. Right. Black vs. White. No matter how you look at it, there are two Americas and we are left to choose which one we want.

Do your research on the Black Lives Matter organization. They are not some left-wing group who is funded by a billionaire set out to take over the world and to push their “blackness” on to us. It is a group of human beings, HUMANS, who want to create a better world for not only themselves but the others around them.

It is in our DNA to want things to be better, more efficient to make our lives…well…better. If we have a car that doesn’t work, we want to do whatever we can to get it fixed or get a new one. If a friend is going through a break-up and we want to help them out, we help them out. So why is it that an entire race is looking for help and people shrug it off and say what, they want too much? If too much is asking for equality, the world is an even scarier place than I thought.

Please, do your research to understand what and why people say black lives matter. Black people don’t get to take off their skin color and hope tomorrow will be better. Don’t treat people differently because of their skin color. Treat people differently because of their actions.

For more statistics on race and the criminal justice system, please see here.

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