Black Lives Will Always Matter


What does it mean when we say that something matters? Isn’t that the same as saying that something is important?

You know, all my life I was raised to believe that education matters and I think that many people would agree with that statement.

So, riddle me this: why is “Black Lives Matter” so controversial?

Black Lives Matter was founded in 2013. This is a social movement whose mission is to protest and raise awareness of police brutality and other racially motivated crime against black people. This group was formed to challenge white supremacy and everything that is a product of institutional racism, which is aimed at oppressing and marginalizing black men and women. Basically, this group is trying to bridge the racial divide that exists in this country by asking for inclusivity and fair treatment.

All black people want is “a seat at the table,” and I do not think that is too much to ask for moral and historic reasons. No one should be discriminated against because they were born with a particular skin color.

As a young black woman, living in a social climate where black people and their allies are forced to protest in the middle of a pandemic is disheartening and frankly, absurd. COVID-19 has already had a devastating impact on the black community, yet here they are putting their lives on the line for justice and reform. This should not be happening.

In my opinion, the video that showed the murder of George Floyd was cruel, inhumane, and senseless. That officer had his knee on George Floyd’s neck for approximately nine minutes and that is what sparked the protests across the country. Think about being deprived of oxygen for nine minutes.

That is the same amount of time it takes to walk from Ardsley train station to the Main Hall of Mercy College. If you have ever walked that route, you know that is a very long time.

No one deserves to die at that level of cruelty, especially from people who swore to serve and protect us.

Others may disagree. We all have different perceptions of particular events.

Growing up in Jamaica, the motto is, “Out of many, one people,” which was a tribute to the unity of various cultural minorities residing in Jamaica. It means that despite our physical or cultural differences, we can still build a strong community. It showed me that peoples’ differences can bring them together, and I still believe that to be true.

Our differences do make us stronger and we can never truly be united until we embrace each other. This is the United States of America. The word “united” implies that we are one people in theory, but that is not a reality for everyone. I think that some people are so far removed from the struggles of others that they find it difficult to empathize with their plight. However, everyone is capable of sympathizing and that does not require any form of experience in another person’s shoes. All it requires is being a human who cares about the life of other human beings.

Black men and women need an environment where we can feel safe and secure. We should not have to feel fear every time we meet law enforcement. A simple stop and frisk should not result in our death.

We should not be murdered when we are unarmed; when we are walking home from the store; when we are shopping at Walmart; when we are in our apartments sleeping; when we are going for a jog. We should not be murdered while we are trying to live our lives.

This is an ongoing situation. It is an endless cycle of black people dying at the hands of police.

Something must be done. Kneeling did not work. Praying did not work. So now, they are exercising their First Amendment right to get you to listen and inspire change. Why view that as a bad thing?

People are utilizing their voices to give hope to those who are being mistreated. The families of these individuals that lost their lives, deserve to feel heard. They deserve to feel supported and loved. Our complexion should not be viewed as a threat. Martin Luther King marched and preached tirelessly for social change. Black Lives Matter protests are just a continuation of that legacy.