In the midst of this crazy time when Black people are being killed due to racist encounters at an alarming rate, I’ve been seeing some things that haven’t been sitting well with me. Many people have been chanting and screaming “Black lives matter” just to be invalidated by Whites saying “all lives matter.”
While all lives do matter, that’s not the current focus. During this time, Black lives are the ones that are in danger because of racism, whether it be from cops or other civilians. White lives don’t have this issue to worry about.
Imagine that there are a row of houses. Of all the houses in that row, only one of those houses is on fire. Does the fire department come in and spray every house in the row with water? No. They come and put water on the house that’s in flames. That doesn’t mean that all of the other houses don’t matter. The one that’s on fire just needs special attention until it’s like the rest again. Think of Black lives being the house on fire and all lives being the rest. You get the point?
I don’t like when Black people say “Black lives matter” people always come in and try to shift the issue and make it something that it isn’t. It’s always “Black lives matter, but…” There is no but. Black lives do matter. Unless you’re oppressed, hated, and killed for no justifiable reason, this is not the time to talk about your group. If you have privilege and power to encourage change, use that power for good instead of trying to tear down and invalidate what Black people are feeling.
If you’re a non-Black person saying “all lives matter,” then you’re a part of the problem because you don’t want to acknowledge your privilege and ability to help diffuse a situation. To all the Black people who are fighting and tired of the unfair treatment we receive, keep fighting. Black lives matter now more than ever and all of the riots and protests will show everyone else just that.
By Cierra Lemott, Senior, Brooks College Prep
Instagram & Snapchat: @cece.kodak