What do we mean when we say that Black Lives Matter? We don’t mean that other lives do not matter. So why do we single out Black lives?
Let me share a brief parable:
The father is waiting there with a big sign. It reads, #PRODIGALSONSMATTER.
When the older brother saw it, he became angry and would not attend the party. He moped around with a sign of his own that read: #ALLSONSMATTER.
The father said to him, Dude, it’s not about you right now.”
There is overwhelming evidence that for many, Black lives do NOT matter. Far too many people of color are killed for no other reason than that they are black. George Floyd was not one isolated incident. Many black people lose their lives because racist attitudes deem their lives unimportant. We might think of lynching as something from the past. But it is still among us in different forms.
Then there are all of the other ways that people of color are told that they don’t matter. Covid 19 has hit the African American community harder than others. Health care and education and services are too often second class when it comes to people of color. The unemployment rate for black is twice what it is for whites. If you cannot admit to the levels of racism in this country, then you are expressing a form of white privilege and the truth is far from you.
So, try to understand what it would feel like to be a person of color knowing that some police and some citizens see your life as worthless because you are black. Saying that black lives matter is not a political statement. It is an ethical statement. Saying that black lives matter is not a political statement. It is an ethical statement.
If you are white and you are offended by the term Black Lives Matter, you need to understand that while all lives matter, not all lives are threatened every day because of ugly racist attitudes. Dude, It’s not about you right now.