Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Why "Black" Lives Matter, not: "All" Lives Matter

Previously in my blog, I wanted to say "all lives matter" instead of black lives matter. I didn't GET why not all?

I recently read an article sent to me by my mother called Why ‘Black lives matter’ resonates that helped to explain that distinction to me. The article is by Leonard Pitts, Jr. from the Miami Herald, August 22, 2015.

Leonard Pitts, Jr. explained the distinction by using a metaphor about somebody going to the emergency room to get help for a very painful wrist. The doctor wanted to examine all the bones, even though only the left wrist hurt, saying "Hey, all bones matter." 

That would very wrong, right?

"All lives matter" is the same. It's not about "elevating some lives" any more than it would be about elevating some bones. Rather, it's about treating where it hurts. (excerpt from the article)

Leonard Pitts, Jr. goes on to say:
...while police abuse is not unknown in other lives, it is disproportionate in black lives.

Later in the article, he said that seeing white protesters in Charleston "chanting "Black lives matter! Black lives matter!" was a soul-filling reminder that at least some of us still realize we all have access to each other's pain and joy by simple virtue of the fact that we all are human...they did not sink guiltily from that connection. Instead, they ran bravely to it." (excerpt from the article)


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