Black Power and Black Lives Matter

Hey Scholars!

This past year, I have found myself engaging in numerous conversations about the Black Lives Matter movement and the meaning of black power. People allow the mainstream media to "educate" them and make decisions for them without ever researching for themselves what the truth is; this sham of an election has exposed this repeatedly.  

I remember, after Jesse Williams acceptance speech at the BET Awards telecast, people started circulating a petition to get the Black Lives Matter organization listed as a terrorist group. Rather than recognize police brutality as an issue when it comes to black, brown, and indigenous communities, people like to blame people for their tragedies they experience. 



I came across a photo sometime ago and it struck me just how inaccurate it is. 


White power is used to instill fear in people through violent means. White power is a promotion of white supremacy. Black power is used to instill pride in oneself in the face of that violence. Black power and the Black Lives Matter movement is not a promotion of black supremacy. For those using the "All Lives Matter" argument to say that black power is the equivalent to white power, stop.


It is dangerous to form an opinion without having knowledge about something you speak out about, which is the case when it comes to the BLM. While many support the BLM, they do not know that it is more than just people protesting when cops kill people. It is so much more than that. I think that it is worth checking out this site where the organization's guiding principles are detailed. This movement is more than just protests. This movement calls attention to issues that affect all people in our nation such as mass incarceration, poverty, education, employment, housing, and health. Taking it a step forward, the movement offers solutions to these problems and targets the branch of government that can do something about it. 


When I see BLM being mentioned in the media, the face and central figure of the movement tends to be Deray McKesson. The problem is this, the movement was founded by three black women, Alicia Garza, Opal Tometi, and Patrisse Cullors. Why does this matter? It matters because of the very reason these women founding the movement, black women in various capacities are marginalized, silenced, and ignored. The necessity of the movement and the importance of its establishment is detailed here.

For a movement founded by black women, we often find ourselves still marginalized. When black boys and men are killed at the hands of cops, people show up en masse to protest these killings as they should. When the victims are black girls and women, the majority of people who show up are black women. Inside of this movement, the hashtag Say Her Name has been created to bring attention to black girls and women


The Black Lives Matter movement is not interested in or trying to start a race war, it is seeking to end one. Those of us who shout Black Lives Matter are not saying that only black lives matter, we are saying that our lives matter too. Our nation was built on the notion that our lives do not matter. The so-called founding fathers life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness was built on the backs of enslaved men, women, and children- indigenous and black people who lives did not matter. We are reclaiming our power and waking people up. Our nation is not the home of the brave and land of the free if the people who inhabit it are not free and cannot breathe. America, Let us live. Let us breathe. Let us be. 




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