Black Lives Matter has sprung up into the national spotlight after the highly publicized Trayvon Martin case where George Zimmerman a Latino man was on trial for the murder of Trayvon Martin a 17 year of black man. I won’t get into all the details of the Travyon Martin case here as I will save that for another post but with this article I want to open up the question of what BLM or Black Lives Matter really stands for?
This organization gets a bad wrap in particular in conservative circles and even though I am a conservative I’m very open minded but still focused on specific values and ideas. Before I became a conservative I was a Democratic, probably many people fell into conservatism after having voted Democratic for years and felt that progressive ideas were not getting you anywhere.
As I learn more about BLM and analyze their website I can see that this is a very polished and professional looking website. Immediately as I read the website I can tell that they are highly influenced by progressive/liberal ways of thinking. This paragraph is very interesting:
Black Lives Matter is a unique contribution that goes beyond extrajudicial killings of Black people by police and vigilantes. It goes beyond the narrow nationalism that can be prevalent within some Black communities, which merely call on Black people to love Black, live Black and buy Black, keeping straight cis Black men in the front of the movement while our sisters, queer and trans and disabled folk take up roles in the background or not at all. Black Lives Matter affirms the lives of Black queer and trans folks, disabled folks, Black-undocumented folks, folks with records, women and all Black lives along the gender spectrum. It centers those that have been marginalized within Black liberation movements. It is a tactic to (re)build the Black liberation movement.
So it looks like they represent a little bit of Beyonce type of black feminism here, they aren’t identifying with the black power movement as they say they go beyond that narrow way of thinking, and they also support the black LGBT community.
They go on to provide various statistics such as:
- 60% of black girls are sexually assaulted before age 18
- Every 28 hours a black man, women or child is murdered by police or vigilante law enforcement
- The average life expectancy of a black transgender woman is 35
- Black women are incarcerated at a rate 6x that of white women
These are alarming statistics and I believe if we researched more into each situation we would find that there are specific reasons for it. For example 60% of black girls are probably not being sexually assaulted by white men or any other race it’s probably someone within their family a friend etc. It is a huge problem and not the only problem black women face. Also lets face it black people commit crimes and a lot of them, we live in the poorest neighborhoods for a reason, we have the highest rate of incarceration for a reason, it goes without saying that if police are coming into contact with blacks at a higher rate than other races unfortunately there are shoot outs, high speed car chases, someone who is resisting arrest and in some cases the police officer shot and killed a black person and it was unjustified.
I’m not as a conservative arguing the fact that there are some police officers that are corrupt because of course there are, just like there are shady and corrupt lawyers, judges and politicians. My point is that BLM has to understand that the criminal justice system itself is corrupt and you can’t blame this just on the police. Watch the movie Serpico which is based on a New York City cop that was surrounded by mass corruption, pretty much his entire department was corrupt but he was honest and not on the take. It’s a terrific movie to see the history of corruption on the police force from way back in the 1970’s.
If you think the police are bad what about the FBI, the ATF, the NSA, the CIA this goes all the way up to Presidents and politicians from BOTH PARTIES. Republicans in particular have been tracking this stuff and trying to stamp out corruption for years and that also includes some Democrats.
My point is you need to hold everyone accountable instead of trying to go for the small fry the little guys at the lower level busting their ass to do a job they don’t really have authority or control, they are told what to do in the black community. If the police are getting away with murder who do you think is letting them get away with murder? You have to hold these mayors accountable, the police chiefs accountable, the city council members accountable, the police unions, there are ways to stop the senseless and unwarranted killings of all people not just blacks but you have to look at the source.
Police officers are human beings, they have emotions and feelings and if they go to work everyday and 90% of the perpetrators they see committing crimes are black we need to also ask the question why are black men and women getting arrested so much in the first place? We need to fix that as well, we need to focus on preventing ourselves and people in our community from getting into situations in the first place to warrant any engagement of cops. I do understand that there are cases that blacks were not even committing crimes and I understand that but those cases are rare compared to many other cases where blacks are actively going back and forth to jail. I have been to jail I have personal experience seeing guys I was locked up with having said they get locked up almost every weekend or very frequently to say the least.
I’m not going to criticize BLM, I don’t agree with their political ideology and I believe blaming the police for everything is going to get old and you are only going to gain support from certain niche groups, black nationalists, Nation of Islam, NAACP, etc. I believe to effect massive change it will take more than protests because most white people don’t understand the message of BLM especially conservative whites, liberal whites are sympathetic only because they feel guilty. If you continue to yell, shout and scream at the police it only makes the general population more skeptical of your message and legitimacy. If you want to put the cops on notice, go to the town hall meetings that cops have, talk to the fraternal order of police in each city, talk with the police chiefs and lieutenants, try to form a bond with the police in your community so that at least they know there is “someone willing to work with them” to help stop crime. They will be much more open helping you and listening to you if you come across a situation where it looks like a police office has unjustly murdered a black person. I wish every black community would wake up and realize that we NEED the police, good police in our neighborhoods, but they are about to check out and stop doing their job in your neighborhood if it appears that you don’t want them. This would be disastrous for the black community and BLM would have blood on their hands for stoking the flames nation wide of police hatred. I know BLM is a young organization, I wish them well and hope that they expand their way of thinking and tackling these problems, they have gotten this far so I hope they can go even father with class, dignity and having accomplished some things for black people.