Why Black Lives Matter is Crucial, All Lives Matter is Unnecessary, and White Lives Matter is just Racist

So Black Lives Matter has taken over my newsfeed of Facebook again this week.

11887984_10153326062674667_2877683434983872947_nIt all started with this picture, posted on the page for my employer, United Campus Ministries at TU, after we put a BLM sign out front of our building, and it was subsequently stolen Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. We promptly got another one to put out front.

I shared the picture to my personal Facebook page, and all hell broke lose. Immediately, the All Lives Matter and White Lives Matter crowd jumped all over this. So I posted an article by Leonard Pitts that addressed why All Lives Matter is insensitive and unnecessary.

And that set off a whole other can of worms.

11947493_10207265300571382_6896091287550583937_nSo then, in my great wisdom, I posted this wonderful graphic.

And the whole thing happened over again.

And in the midst of this, I keep seeing patterns of thought from the ALM/WLM crowd that I find disturbing and very, very frustrating. So I want to try to address some of that, to try to get people to understand, as my title states, why BLM is so important, ALM is unnecessary, and WLM is just flat-out racist. And, in sticking with the theme around here, why as Christians we have a duty to stand with BLM in combating racial injustice in America today.

First, what exactly is Black Lives Matter? It’s more than just a slogan, or a chant, or a catchphrase. BLM is a movement, organized after the unjust death of teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO. But it is a movement responding to the hundreds of deaths before and after Brown, including Trayvon Martin, Jordan Davis, Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, Walter Scott, Eric Garner, Freddie Gray and many many more young black men and women who died at the hands of white police officers. Please understand that: it is an organized movement, with leaders and decision-makers and a policy platform. And it is centered around one of the largest on-going injustices in America today.

There is a legitimate problem centered around black men and women being gunned down by police officers prior to any opportunity for due process and the judicial system to do its work, and then those police officers walking away with no consequences. Read that last sentence again; it is the crux of what people are upset about. Far too many times have we seen stories about a black human being who may or may not have broken a law being killed by the officer they come in contact with, and then no consequences being handed down. Far too often, the death penalty has been meted out at the whim of a single, white police officer, for alleged “crimes” that in a court of law would merit a fine.

This is a real problem in a country that purports to believe in the principle of the presumption of innocence, and trial by jury. When we dispense with real justice, when we defend those who take it into their own hands to do the work of the courts and dispense “justice” without due process, we inevitably say that the victimized person was undeserving of the rights guaranteed to us in the America. That person just didn’t matter enough.

This is what is meant by the phrase “Black Lives Matter.” Too often, black lives don’t seem to matter. Black lives seem expendable, like they are merely the normal leftovers of creating a society that is supposedly “just” and “free” and “safe.” Every time a black man or woman is gunned down by a state actor, and no one is held responsible, it sends the message that Black Lives Don’t Matter.

BLM works to make this simple idea a reality: the lives of black people do matter.

It isn’t an assertion that no other lives matter. Stop reading Black Lives Matter as a zero-sum statement. It isn’t. Acknowledging the existence of one injustice does not the negate the importance of others. Acknowledging the humanity of another person, or of a specific oppressed group, does not deny the humanity of everyone else. These are the words of Mana Tahaie, who designed and distributed these signs here in Tulsa, on Facebook that I found particularly striking:

A critical part of my worldview is that I believe that more for you does not mean less for me. I believe in abundance. I don’t think that pulling up one community necessitates tearing down another. I don’t feel that your success comes at my expense. Quite the opposite: I believe that a rising tide lifts all boats, and that my liberation is bound up in yours. So standing in solidarity with someone else’s struggle doesn’t threaten me, it actually strengthens me. I think we’re in a historic moment, when a community is crying out for justice, and in those moments I choose to stand with the oppressed. I also fight against transphobia, and ableism, and homophobia, even though I’m not directly impacted by those. I hope that in doing so, I inspire others to fight against sexism and ageism and Islamophobia and xenophobia and other things that oppress me.

I truly believe that the world will be more just, and beautiful, when we share one another’s struggles.

We only achieve justice in this world by working together, and by acknowledging and helping those who are oppressed, not by denigrating them because we have a problem with the words they use. BLM does not negate other issues in the world; it strengthens them by it’s very existence.

A good metaphor I keep seeing is the man who goes to the doctor for a broken arm, and the doctor starts examining the rest of the man’s body. The injured man says, “Doc, it’s my arm that’s broken; everything else is fine,” and the doctor responds, “All bones matter.” Of course they do! But they aren’t the ones that are hurting right now!

As a follower of Jesus, I like this little illustration, courtesy of my wonderful wife: when Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor,” no one stood up and yelled “Blessed is everyone!”

All Lives Matter seems to only ever be said in reaction to someone saying Black Lives Matter. That is a problem. It is a phrase being thrown around in opposition to BLM, no complementary to it.

And frankly, ALM is just unnecessary. No one in BLM has ever made the assertion that all lives don’t matter. They clearly do. That’s not issue here. What is the issue is that it is black people who are the target of discrimination, hatred and violence.

I’ve also seen some views that Black Lives Matter is the wrong phrase to use, or it is divisive or non-inclusive. Usually, this sentiment comes from white people, who seem to have a knee jerk reaction to BLM. But here’s the thing: as white people, we don’t get to dictate to an oppressed minority how they go about achieving their liberation. For too long, we have been the one’s standing in their way, the ones telling them what they can or cannot do. So for us to stand up now and say, “hey, we get what you are doing, but can you just say it a little nicer?” is the epitome of racial arrogance and lack of self awareness.

Our job as white people isn’t to direct BLM, or tell it how to work or what strategy to use. Our job is to acknowledge the depth of the hurt and anger, and the injustice that is happening every single day, and then ask, “how can we help?” That’s it. We need to stop trying to make this about us, and take the back seat for once in our lives. “How can we help?” That’s our role.

This is why White Lives Matter is such a racist and hate-filled statement. We white people are not at risk in this country, nor have we ever been.

It isn’t white people being gunned down without due process.

It isn’t white people who were enslaved for 350 years.

It wasn’t white people who have suffered under Jim Crow and state sponsored discrimination and racism for 150 years since.

Just as white people didn’t need to be emancipated, we don’t need to assert that our lives matter. We were never enslaved, and we were never the victims of terrorism and hatred supported by the state based on the color of our skin.

To say White Lives Matter in response of Black Lives Matter is to again assert our own assumed “superiority” and denigrate the humanity of African Americans. In light of the racial history of our nation, of the fact that it is exclusively white Americans who for so long have held down black people so that they might not challenge our place in the world, to use oxygen and air time to drown out BLM is to stand on the side of segregationists and the KKK and Jim Crow. It’s time we white people realized, it’s not all about us. We are not victims, we are not in need of protection or saving or fighting back. We are the perpetrator, not the victim.

Black people make up about 12% of the American population. They make up almost 40% of the prison population(1). Black men are incarcerated at over 6 times the rate of white men(2). Studies show that black men receive considerably longer sentences for petty crimes than white men do, as much as 10% longer, even when factoring in past records(3). This despite the fact that, in total, black people do not commit crimes at higher rates than whites, and certainly not at a rate that matches the incarceration gap(4). In fact, the number one reason for incarceration among black men, drug use, is actually more of a statistical problem among white men(5). This is injustice. This is institutionalized racism. We are responsible for this.

Racism is not the acknowledgment of race. Racism is not being aware of race. Racism is the active or passive discrimination against a group of people based on their ethnicity or skin color, especially by a majority identifier against a minority. It is not racist to say Black Lives Matter. It is racist to say White Lives Matter. You have to be aware of culture, of society, of history. We don’t live in a vacuum. We don’t live free from the past, from those around us, from cultural trends. That is why WLM is such a big, racist problem.

As Christians, we are called to follow the example of a man who made his life among the poor and oppressed and downtrodden. Jesus’ example calls us to work for injustice, to identify with the least among us. As Christians, we must work to liberate those who are shackled.

Jesus’ primary concern for the least of these is the earthly embodiment of God’s preferential option for poor. God always sides with the oppressed and downtrodden and lowly. We are obligated to do the same, even if it makes us uncomfortable or burdened.

White, middle class Americans are not the oppressed.

I have no doubt that, were Jesus alive today, he would be saying Black Lives Matter and marching in the streets of Ferguson and Baltimore. And really, he already is, in the form of every human who says these words and marches for justice. I want to be on the side of Jesus, and the side of justice and truth. That’s why I support Black Lives Matter.

Click here for my follow-up post, which answers most of the criticism and objections raised in comments below.

ed.: Updated to reflect the fact that victims of police brutality are not just men, bu also women and trans- or cis-gendered people of color. Thanks to commenter Faith Eden-Barre for pointing out this oversight in my original writing.

(1) http://www.bjs.gov/index.cfm?ty=pbdetail&iid=2200

(2) http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1985377

(3) http://jrc.sagepub.com/content/49/1/56.short

(4) Let me clarify this with something I said in comments: “In looking at total murders in the United States, blacks and whites both commit close to 50% of murders, with the small difference accounted for by Asians, Native Americans, Hispanics, etc. My general point stands: blacks do not commit crimes at a considerably higher rate than whites, especially not at a rate that matches the incarceration disparity.”

(5) http://healthland.time.com/2011/11/07/study-whites-more-likely-to-abuse-drugs-than-blacks/

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211 thoughts on “Why Black Lives Matter is Crucial, All Lives Matter is Unnecessary, and White Lives Matter is just Racist

  1. Pingback: Why Black Lives Matter is Crucial, All Lives Matter is Unnecessary, and White Lives Matter is just Racist | The Proverbial Light Behind Closed Doors.

  2. Jody

    Thank you. This is what I have been learning and trying to explain for the past year or so. I have often felt that the Christian leadership has not done or said enough on this topic (and I’ve been a Christian my whole life). I truly appreciate the way you have laid it all out in this article.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. geTaylor

      Roll out the religion arguments when all else is failing.
      Michael Brown was a thug in the process of assaulting a police officer; the initial
      inflammatory reports were proved to be false. Trayvon Martin was shot while assaulting
      a private citizen. Is Miriam Carey excluded from the list because she was killed by the praetorian guard?

      Like

      1. Actually, I rolled out the “religion argument” because this is a blog about Christianity. That’s what I do here.

        “Thug” is another one of those racially-tinged words aimed at those we like to dehumanize. No matter what he did, Michael Brown wasn’t deserving of a death sentence. Nor was Trayvon Martin. We don’t execute people because they punch someone, and we certainly don’t do it prior to due process or a trial by jury.

        My list of names is in no way meant to be inclusive of every black man or woman killed by authorities; I have neither the time nor the space for such a large list. But Miriam Carey’s life mattered too. She was also killed unjustly and prior to any opportunity for the justice system to handle her situation.

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  3. Pingback: Thank You! | Justin DaMetz

  4. All lives matter is encompassing black lives matter…. For you to say this is irrelevant is insulting and counter-intuitive as once again ALL LIVES include BLACK LIVES. Also for you to use Christian Indoctrination as some proof of validity to this movement is asinine, as there is nothing about race in the bible and christian beliefs are that ALL LIVES MATTER!!!!!

    You have taken political movements and incorporated them into a race debate.

    The level at which black “kids”/”innocents” are being gunned down which is in question anyways as most have been accused of committing crimes and that fact is in question. Regardless this is affecting a number of less than 20 people a year out of HUNDREDS of MILLIONS!!!!!!

    Furthermore the #1 race to be killed by police officers is white, not black and yet you state that when these officers aren’t prosecuted it mean BLACK LIVES DON’T MATTER, thus justifying BLMs, but yet if a white person has it and decides to run a WLM campaign he is a racist.

    You don’t get to determine who’s a racist, no one gave you that power , no one gave blacks that power, you’re being a hypocrite and assume all us white people are the same and that we are all racists.

    You also group me in with my ancestors as if I have to atone for their sins, or as if some how this influences you or gives you an understanding of how I think.

    Like

    1. Jeff,

      Thanks for taking the time to read and leave some feedback.

      ALM as a phrase does encompass BLM, but for the purposes of building a movement and raising awareness in America today, ALM is simply unnecessary. Nobody ever questioned whether all lives matter. That is not a debate happening today. What is happening is that black lives are being undervalued, or even valued not at all. BLM’s purpose as a movement is to being this reality to light. ALM is unnecessary because it is a straw man; it is an answer in search of question that seeks to preempt the passion of BLM, and thus steals needed resources and time from BLM.

      Just because the Bible never mentions race as we understand it doesn’t mean Christianity has no place to inform or comment upon BLM. My faith drives my passion for justice, and demands that I seek out injustices to help resolve. This is absolutely an issue that Christianity provides a crucial lens for. There are lots of modern day things never mentioned in the Bible (for instance, abortion, or committed same sex relationships) but we Christians have never had a problem using faith to comment on them. I don’t see why this issue would be any different.

      AS for your uncited “Statistic” that only 20 or so kids have been gunned down: 1) I’d love to see where you got that number, because a simple google search will bring to light hundreds and hundreds of cases over the last decade, not too mention the hundreds of thousands of black bodies so carelessly discarded in this country as a result of slavery, Jim Crow, lynching, etc; and 2) even if it was only 1 life extinguished unjustly, that would be one too many, and that injustice would demand a response to ensure responsibility and fight to prevent any others.

      I’m sure the absolute numbers of police deaths do show more whites than blacks. However, I would suggest you look at those numbers as percentages of the total white population, versus the percentage of the black population that has been victimized. Also, I’m betting the incidences of innocent, unthreatening men being killed is much higher in the black community than white.

      Racism is racism; it’s fairly self-evident, and no, no one appointed me as the arbiter of racism, but I (and all people) have a duty to point out racism where we see it. However, if after reading my post, you don’t understand why we white people (myself included) have no grounds to stand upon to claim victimization (because we are not victims, in any way shape or form) then I doubt I can convince you otherwise at this point.

      Finally, no, you are not responsible for the actions of your ancestors. But you are the living, breathing offspring of them, and their actions and decisions are still reverberating down through the years today, and so as adults, I don’t think it is too much to ask of us to try to alleviate some of those negative repercussions, and express some regret on behalf of our ancestors for the damage decisions may have caused.

      Again, thanks for reading and commenting. Grace and peace.

      Justin DaMetz

      Liked by 10 people

      1. Sandra Stoler

        Thank you. You have shared your values in such a positive and logical process. I am grateful that you shared this with me. Peace and grace🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻

        Like

      2. Bruce

        Justin, Jeff owes black folks no regret or even an apology….this is ridiculous. I am black and I don’t go around talking this nonsense especially when I see my own exacting injustice against one another everyday.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Dee

        There are so many factual inaccuracies in this article, it is laughable. With regards to Freddie Gray, you can drop the “murdered at the hand of white police officers” narrative. Factual evidence, including the coroner’s report, shows that Gray’s death was, at best, negligence. Not murder. However, assuming you still want to play the “murder” card, 3 of the 6 officers being charged are black, and 3 are white. It’s awfully convenient that fact gets lost in the shuffle. I guess the headline “Freddie Gray Murdered by Black and White Police” doesn’t do much to further the BLM agenda.

        Then, as if the article wasn’t poorly put together enough, you take to the comments to further discredit yourself. This being a Christian blog, and all, you may want to do some reading before proclaiming what the Bible does, and does not cover. Let’s revisit your statement with a few additions: “There are lots of modern day things never mentioned in the Bible (for instance, abortion [Exodus 20:13 “Thou shall not kill”], or committed same sex relationships [Leviticus 20:13 “If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination”]). In addition, contrary to your statement, the Bible does mention racism multiple times (Romans 10:12, John 7:24, James 2:9, and John 13:34; to name a few).

        The statement “black lives matter” is true. As all lives certainly matter. The movement “Black Lives Matter” is a racist movement. Calling for attacks on police, whites, etc. If the BLM movement was truly concerned with black lives, they would take a look at the statistics, and start with the larger problem. 200+ murders this year in Baltimore. An overwhelmingly majority of victims being black. An overwhelmingly majority of the murderers being black. The biggest threat against young black people isn’t Police and “white America”, it’s other blacks.

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      4. Ali

        Justin,
        I enjoyed reading your opinions, and I often go back and forth on this issue. It’s painful to know that so many people feel oppressed and discriminated against. There is no doubt that racism exists in the US. It exists almost everywhere. But… some of the things you’ve mentioned are the very reasons I go back and forth on this issue:

        You made a very good point: Black people are 12% of the US population. White people are about 63%. So you made the blanket statement that the fact that black people make up 40% of the prison population implies institutionalized racism. This statement and the proportional math that supports it is consistent with your response to Jeff Phelps’ comment that police kill more whites than blacks. It’s not about absolute numbers, it’s the proportion of the population. I agree wtih you.

        So doesn’t it seem a little misleading to your audience to say:
        “In looking at total murders in the United States, blacks and whites both commit close to 50% of murders, with the small difference accounted for by Asians, Native Americans, Hispanics, etc. My general point stands: blacks do not commit crimes at a considerably higher rate than whites, especially not at a rate that matches the incarceration disparity.”

        So… going back to your original math, black people do commit, per capita, a much greater number of murders than whites. I don’t think it’s racist to say that. Those are your own statistics. But I don’t believe that black people, all else equal, commit more murders, because I think what we’re seeing is a war on POVERTY, not so much a war on black people. There is more crime and more arrests in impoverished neighborhoods, regardless of race. And if we look at the percentage of people in poverty (23% Black and 41% white), suddenly the proportional murder rates start to look much better than if we had used the 12% black /63% white as a benchmark. Are police targeting impoverished areas and is that why the numbers correlate? Maybe. Is it a big conspiracy that police are focusing on poor neighborhoods for the sole purpose of oppressing black people? I think that’s a bit of a stretch.

        I don’t want to discount racism or individual’s experiences with racism, but how is nobody talking about this as a war on poverty?? If we look at the population of the US that is in poverty (http://kff.org/other/state-indicator/poverty-rate-by-raceethnicity/), there were 45.7M people in poverty in 2013. 19M were white, 10.3M were black, 12.9M were Hispanic, and 3.5M “other”…
        From 1999-2011, police shot and killed 2151 white people and 1130 black people according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Now, don’t those statistics of police shootings look a lot more proportionate if we look at the people in poverty? About twice as many whites in poverty, and about twice as many whites shot and killed by police. I’m not saying it’s that simple, but I think it warrants a discussion and should be considered by BLM.

        I’m from an upper-middle class suburb where when kids got into trouble, their parents made it go away… with money, connections, etc. You can call this white privilege (in some sense it is, given that black people control less than 1% of the wealth in the US), but it’s more money privilege. The black people that lived in those neighborhoods (admittedly, a very small percentage of that school district was black) had money, and also made those problems -drugs, fighting, dui’s, etc- disappear.

        And when we talk about the disparity of wealth… I also don’t believe (because I have not seen undeniable proof) there is any large scale conspiracy to keep wealth out of the hands of black people. I think it is much more likely that this is the product of us all still living in a segregated society. I am sure you are familiar with white flight, which happened in almost every urban community after integration of schools. Think about it – If it’s all about who you know when it comes to landing that great job or getting support in starting a business, you’ll need to network with people who can help you. If we’re in a segregated society, and black people only have 1% of the wealth, then their chances of networking with other successful black people is not very likely, and their chances of networking with wealthy white people (in a segregated society) is not very likely… this is a problem that I don’t know how to fix, but I think focusing on bringing people together will do more good than creating a wider divide between us.

        I have an idea – let’s focus on the employers who won’t respond to resumes with black-sounding names, and boycott them out of business. Then black people wouldn’t be pushed into and kept in poverty, which breeds an environment more condusive to crime. (I realize that’s an over-generalization.)

        I’m not saying that I’m right. I’m saying more people should explore this idea or engage it in conversation… but BLM won’t, because if it were true, it would derail the movement.

        Thanks for sharing your thoughts and opinions!

        Like

    2. Bill Barton

      Mr Phelps is real close to my feelings. In the last 3 or 4 days we have news and law enforcement shot down in cold blood. It also like open season without a license. I can see some of the justication in BLM of those that see the big picture but it sure brings home the statement that “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing “. Ferguson was justified, but the press told a different story. They had paid protesters.

      Like

      1. Thank you for your examples, Mr. Barton, because they rather prove BLM and Mr. DaMetz’s point. The murders of those officers were and are horrific, but please note that those murders resulted not just in instant outrage, but in an immediate effort to find the perpetrators and bring them to justice. No one had to protest in the streets to get those crimes taken seriously or even be seen as crimes to begin with. No one had to take to the streets to insist that their lives mattered.

        Liked by 1 person

    3. Jeff,

      There’s no need to put kids in quotes, Justin, since many of the people recently killed were kids. Tamir Rice was TWELVE years old. 12 AND innocent, no quotes need.

      And I do group you in with your ancestors because you DO have to atone for their sins. We are responsible for what we inherit. I’m speaking as the first-generation of my family born in this country, a person whose grandfather fought in the German army on the side of the Nazis. For me to say I get to ignore my ancestors would be ignorant, right? Ditto for you, regardless of where you come from. We are all culpable.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. YOur Name Here

        I dont even know my great grandfather or mothers name. I dont know what they did or where they lived. I know nothing about them. I know more about you from reading your stupid comments then I do about them. So since I know more about you then them should I atone for your stupidity? I don’t think so. No, it’s not ignorant for you to blame your unborn self for what your grandfather did. What about your great, great, great, great, grandparents? What about your future great grand daughter? She is probably already apologizing for you.

        Like

    4. Try to release your burden of defense when you read this. All lives matter is a given, but it seems there is a trend that black lives do not matter as much a white. Saying black lives matter doesn’t negate the importance of others it is just standing up to injustices done overwhelmingly to the black race. you denounce the innocent’s of the victims senselessly being murdered by police, but police aren’t hired to be judge and jury. All are suppose to be innocent until proven otherwise. Your prejudice stance against this proves that the remnants of your four fathers has a strong hold on your reality, the difference in the police murdering blacks as opposed to whites is that they are not held accountable for their aggress actions. By all means take a stand, organize a march for your cause but WITHOUT demeaning the outcries of those being slaughtered.

      Liked by 1 person

    5. Jeff, saying that ‘Black Lives Matter’ is the same as shouting “Hey, black lives matter too!”. Taking into account that white lives are regarded as mattering already, Black Lives Matter comes to try to complete the gap. All lives matter is nothing but a general claim that all can take for granted in theory, but we should specifically try and fix the racism against black lives. When your head hurts, you don’t get a knee surgery.

      Liked by 2 people

    6. Suzanne Gleason

      As a clueless white person its obvious you are not practicing Jesus teaching and you are full of anger about the premise that BLM. Look within your heart and seek understanding. In other words stop being so completely clueless.

      Like

  5. Thank you for posting this. I have always wondered which one to abide by without getting attacked and it turns out, a lot of Americans are hyper-sensitive to the exposure of ALL 3 sayings… BLM, ALM & WLM.

    I agree that WLM is flat out racist. I also agree that ALM is important because, as a Catholic Christian myself, we should love and respect all of God’s people equally. We are a community. We should see past skin color. Unfortunately, we are not quite there yet.

    Now I see, thanks to this post, why BLM is necessary. I agree that black people are oppressed and definitely don’t always have the upper hand or as many advantages as some caucasians may have. In my opinion, Black Lives DO Matter. I think it’s good to focus on the oppressed but also important that those being oppressed are doing something about it in a civil manner. All of the riots and crimes that occurred when certain black people were murdered is no way to help this issue. Wreaking havoc just causes more problems and also continues the races to turn against each other.

    Where is the peace?

    BLM. Now let’s create an equal society for them and for ALL.

    Like

    1. Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment!

      I am glad I could shed some different light on this issue for you. I would just counsel: no one has ever denied the value of all human life. I am a sincere believer in the idea that all life is precious and should be preserved, even, and especially, that of those who have been condemned or who are forgotten. But as a movement, BLM sheds light on an important injustice happening right now in America, and ALM is a straw man argument, providing a solution in search of an answer. And, in the current context, it is used almost exclusively in opposition to BLM; you never really heard “All Lives Matter” as a phrase batted around until BLM came on the scene. That is why I argue it is unnecessary; it draws attention and energy away from a real problem, to something that no one is even debating.

      I agree that peaceful, nonviolent protests are the preferred method of activism, and I personally am an ardent pacifist, a strong believer in the principle of “turn the other check.” However, I think those involved in BLM would be quick to point out that those rioting and committing violence are not representative of BLM as a whole. Additionally, while I don’t advocate it, I don’t think I can criticize a community that has been held down and oppressed so long for finally lashing out in an effort to get attention. As MLK point it, “A riot is the language of the oppressed.” Sometimes, that is the only way to get the full attention of those in power.

      Again, thanks so much for reading and leaving feedback! I really appreciate it, and I’m glad you enjoyed my writing.

      Grace and peace.

      Justin DaMetz

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Thank you for your comments. It is good to see white Christians speaking up on social justice issues in a way that takes a stand against the racism we have so often outright perpetuated or supported with silence. I am impressed with the scope of your comments. You have addressed quite a few angles of a very complex issue. I have only one suggestion, and that is that you might want to acknowledge that Black women are also frequent victims of state sanctioned violence. There have been many deaths of Black women (cis and trans) and their stories are not getting the publicity that murdered Black men are currently receiving. I know it is hard to cover every facet of this problem, but I believe a few minor edits is all it would take – just saying men and women and including some of the women’s names (e.g. Rekia Boyd & Sandra Bland, there are many more) in your paragraph about what BLM is would be sufficient. Anyway, thank you for reading and considering my comments. And again, thank you for speaking out.

    Like

    1. Faith,

      Thanks for reading, and for the feedback. You are right about this, and that is an oversight on my part in writing. I’m going to make some edits to reflect that fact. And I’m glad you found my port informative and worth reading. Thanks so much.

      Grace and peace

      Justin DaMetz

      Like

  7. You sir, are the Christian I aspire to be. This article explains the history, frustration, and fears of mY AA community better than anything I have read in a long time.
    I felt myself exhale when I read this. Finally, finally somebody gets it!
    Can’t thank you enough.
    You will be attacked for this, but I know SOMEONE who has your back!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. busbus

    Thank you for this article. It is straight-forward and to the point. Reading this has made my day. I am impressed and agree with your explanations for BLM, ALM and WLM.

    Like

  9. Pingback: Why Black Lives Matter is Crucial, All Lives Matter is Unnecessary, and White Lives Matter is just Racist | Rugged Cups of Coffee

  10. jim nance

    “We need to stop trying to make it about us”…that’s the key phrase as it illustrates the sub-conscious “white entitlement” framework on which all institutional racism is built.

    Well said ( BTW, I’m a sixty-something white guy)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. NClax

      Thank you for acknowledging this. If more people who identify as white would have your open mind, minorities would feel more validated. As the author points out, we know all lives matter, it just seems apparent (at least to us) that black lives matter less…That’s why the movement exists. Thank you, again.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Good stuff here.

    ALM is the default, and it’s actually WLM. It’s been true for centuries in our nation that white lives matter; the default for all policies and power is that white people are the natural beneficiaries and audience of America.

    Adding “Black Lives Matter” is so completely non-threatening to anyone who is already a beneficiary (e.g., me). It is simply a way to say “Hey, you know that ‘Pledge of Allegiance’ you said everyday as a kid, ‘With liberty and justice for all’? This is what it means. For ‘all.’ You know that line from the Declaration of Independence that ‘all … are endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights’? This is what it means. ‘All.’ You know how you and me and people like me can live our lives with the general assurance we won’t be molested by the police in the enjoyment of our ordinary liberties? This already applies to black lives in America as a generalized but unrealized guarantee; this cry of ‘Black Lives Matter’ is saying ‘if it applies to us, it should be enjoyable by us.'”

    Supporting the black lives behind “Black Lives Matter” is simply an extension of liberty and justice and freedom and the ordinary dignity to live a life without having to explain one’s existence or justify one’s decisions.

    It literally costs me, a white guy, nothing to support the right of black Americans to live out their lives with exactly the same access to protection and freedom as I have. It costs me nothing to expect the police to treat black Americans with exactly the same lack of default suspicion, with exactly the same reluctance to do violence, with exactly the same deference to the citizen. It costs me nothing (indeed, it saves me money in direct and indirect costs) to grant black Americans the same presumed innocence in all interactions with the police, from the initial suspicion that leads to confrontation and arrest, through booking and jailing, through trials and defense and pleas and appeals and incarceration, through fines and penalties and even up to the death penalty.

    No Christian, in my opinion, should be even alarmed by this. Just getting to neutral on the issue would be a starting point. Getting to the point of understanding the lives of black Americans to be able to say “Amen” would be wonderful, but perhaps it’s still an exceptional achievement, to be empathetic to our fellow brothers and sisters.

    Like

    1. Stephen,

      Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment. I really appreciate all the feedback I am getting.

      I agree, it costs nothing for you or I or any other person to see an oppressed minority acquire the rights they are entitled to. I really don’t understand why some people seem so against the insurance of equal treatment for all.

      Again, thanks so much for the feedback!

      Grace and peace

      Justin

      Like

  12. “This despite the fact that black people do not commit crimes at higher rates than whites.”

    That is a ball faced lie. Check out the crime, broken down by race, on the US Crime Statistics website. website. Of the nearly 770,000 violent interracial crimes committed every year involving Blacks and Whites, Blacks commit 85 percent and Whites commit 15 percent. When it comes to murder, the offending rate for blacks was almost 8 times higher than whites, and the victim rate 6 times higher. Most murders were intraracial, with 84% of white homicide victims murdered by whites, and 93% of black victims murdered by blacks.

    Like

    1. Shelley,

      I don’t think my statement is a “bald-faced lie,” as you characterized it. In fact, I think it accurately reflects the current situation of crime and race in the United States.

      In looking at total murders in the United States, blacks and whites both commit close to 50% of murders, with the small difference accounted for by Asians, Native Americans, Hispanics, etc. My general point stands: blacks do not commit crimes at a considerably higher rate than whites, especially not at a rate that matches the incarceration disparity.

      I will, in light of your comment, clarify that sentence to better reflect my point.

      Thanks for reading and the feedback.

      Justin

      Like

      1. One of the things that leads to the insistence that black Americans commit more crimes than white Americans (indeed, black males have a 1 in 3 chance of arrest; white males have a 1 in 50, and white women a 1:111 chance) is that the police are simply more likely to patrol and monitor the behavior of black Americans; if the police see an offense committed by a black American, that black American is simply more likely to be arrested than a white American committing exactly the same offense.

        It’s been proven over and over and over again. More police in black areas; more arrests for offense; more likelihood of either no bail or higher bail for the same offenses; more likely to not have paid-for representation; more likely to go to trial; more likely to be convicted; more likely to lose on appeal; more likely to have a longer sentence for the same offense; more likely to be rejected for parole; more likely to serve out the sentence.

        When we say “but black Americans commit more crime!” it’s really chosen ignorance of what’s going on.

        Some people would rather justify their fears about black Americans and their satisfaction for the punishment of black American behavior than they would want to check out why their fellow humans with nearly identical physical and mental characteristics are so more frequently arrested and jailed.

        There is zero, nada, zilch, about black Americans and black American behavior in and of itself that would lead to suspicion and incarceration. But we’ve set up this closed loop, unbreakable by logic, that black Americans are likely to commit crime, so they need to be monitored more; the more monitoring results in more arrests; the arrests lead to conviction because we all know black Americans commit more crime; and we are justified in continuing to monitor, arrest, and jail because we simply know that black Americans are criminals.

        We have a created this system, and it works, for us, and it is simply wonderful. A free scapegoat for every issue.

        The problem is that for Christians, we believe in a just God who sees our attitudes and our actions, and God isn’t fooled by our fears and our justifications for our fears.

        Thomas Jefferson, no Christian as we would consider a Christian, said it well:

        “Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that his justice cannot sleep forever. Commerce between master and slave is despotism. Nothing is more certainly written in the book of fate than that these people are to be free. Establish a law for educating the common people. This it is the business of the state and on a general plan.”

        We are built up a judgment upon us for centuries of injustice. God may be slow, but Christians believe His judgments are certain.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. NClax

      Unfortunately, those are debunked by the comment below yours, so I won’t reiterate: minorities and Black Americans in particular are more closely policed and more likely to be over-penalized for minor offenses, resulting in higher crime participation rates. Unfortunately, you appear to want to troll, so I won’t try to educate you. If you wanted to learn, you could. You could try listening to your black neighbors, co-workers and friends- please say you have at least one? You could try reading the work of black activists created out of necessity. You could try being human instead of trolling. Compassion and empathy will get you a long way in life, should you choose to embrace it. Black lives matter because at this point in America’s history if they don’t matter soon, they never will. I’m assuming that is what you want.

      Like

  13. Excellent explanation of the BLM movement and what I consider the counter movements of ALM and WLM. The sad fact is that most of my “Christian” friends in the south choose to remain willfully ignorant. I put Christian in quotations, because they don’t seem to be following the Christ of the bible. The depth of racism in our country is depressing to me. I know an awful lot of men and women who I looked up to as examples of Christian faith who I can clearly see now as the racist they are. No amount of scripture reference or logic seems to get them to even consider a different reality. Anyway, I digress. Thanks for standing on the right side of this issue and taking action for change.

    Like

    1. Thanks for reading, and for leaving some feedback!

      I agree, the actions and words of so many people who are Christians around this subject boggles the mind sometimes. I wish people would really, truly consider the words of Jesus, the justice and equality he preached, before the words of race-baiting politicians and opinion leaders. I do have hope, however, that things are slowly but surely grinding on in a positive and enlightened direction.

      Thanks again for your feedback.

      Grace and peace

      Justin

      Like

  14. JT

    “I believe that there will ultimately be a clash between the oppressed and those who do the oppressing. I believe that there will be a clash between those who want freedom, justice and equality for everyone and those who want to continue the system of exploitation. I believe that there will be that kind of clash, but I don’t think it will be based on the color of the skin…” -Malcolm X

    Liked by 1 person

    1. JT,

      I love this. I too think the oppressed will rise up and throw off the chains of their oppression. I hope the church stands on the side of liberation and justice when that time comes.

      Thanks for taking the time to read and comment.

      Grace and peace.

      Justin

      Like

  15. Dave

    Thank you for the article. It was articulate and right on the mark. I would, however, like to point out that the statement “It isn’t white people being gunned down without due process.” is not entirely true. Police also kill young white men without due process, though it happens much less often.

    Like

    1. Dave,

      Thanks for taking the time to read and comment. I agree, white people have also suffered from injustice at the hands of the police; the case of Joseph Hutcheson in Dallas is a very sad example of just that.

      However, as you recognized, it does happen to our black brothers and sisters much more often than it happens to us, and that is what BLM looks to point out.

      Thanks again!

      Grace and peace.

      Justin

      Like

  16. RL111

    Well written and provides excellant perspective. You actually changed my view which was to respond with ALM. That being said – BLM has lost any chance of my support unless they denounce the recent chants of “Pigs in a blanket, Fry em like bacon”. If that is part of their message – I cannot support that. Additionally – Why isn’t there a focus on the number of crimes/murders that they commit on each other? It seems that number far exceeds what BLM appear to be focused on.

    Like

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting. I think leaders in the BLM movement would agree that that kind of rhetoric is simply not conducive to promoting change and achieving the ends they are working for. That said, I don’t want to speak for them (that is not my place) and I’ll be eager to hear their statement on it.

      As for the rhetoric around “black on black crime,” it is simply irrelevant to the discussion. BLM works to bring the reality of the unjustified murder of black men and women at the hands of the state via police officers without the opportunity for their Constitutionally-guaranteed right to a trial by jury. This is a real injustice that needs to be addressed immediately, regardless of any other crime in America. We can focus on more than one problem at a time.

      Thanks again for your feedback.

      Grace and peace

      Justin

      Like

  17. Sand

    All lives do matter! That does include black, white any other color skin and also animals in my book! I have family and friends of all colors. I don’t consider myself a racist against color. But I am against CRIMINALS and DEGENERATES of any color. I’m an old gay white woman with only 2 speeding tickets on my record. And I have been discriminated against plenty. I say criminal lives DO NOT MATTER! I shouldn’t have to hide in my house on Fri and Sat nights because I am scared to be shot at. I hate to stereo types. But yes, It is typically blacks and hispanics in our neighborhood that are caught doing the shootings and being in gangs. Being busted for selling drugs and posessing illegal firearms. Blacks are killing each other in our town and they don’t seem to care who is in the way. SO IT IS CLEAR TO ME THAT BLACK LIVES DON’T MATTER TO ALL BLACKS. Some of the cops in that Freddies case were black themselves!
    Furthermore some of the blacks that have been shot by cops were clearly not following respectful protocol towards law inforcement. Meaning if a cop asks you to do something you don’t run and you don’t get sassy! The little black boy who was playing with a toy gun that looked real. He should not have been playing with a toy gun that looked like a real gun! Why? Because it fits the stereotype that has been established for his race. It is sad. But it is true. Start educating these kids and thier parents on how to act in public because IT IS THE STEREOTYPE WE CONTINUE TO SEE THAT IS A BIG CAUSE OF RACISM!! NOBODY WANTS CRIMINAL TYPES AROUND! NOBODY WANTS TO BE SHOT AT OR JUMPED WHILE WALKING A PUBLIC STREET. White people get harassed and called racisit names by blacks and other races too! I serioisly have seen a young black boy walking down my street that lost his gun down his drawers cuz his pants hung so low and he had to stop and dig it out of his saggy pants and re-adjust to put it in his waistband behind his back! No Im not kidding! I’m not against blacks.. I am against the behavior I see out of too many of them. If they don’t care and take steps to change that stereotype within the black race that is seen all too often then how do you expect anybody else to feel any different? Yes All lives matter! Good peoples lives matter. But thugs, shooters, drug dealers, people with undocumented and/or illegal weapons, gang members any criminal types or anybody without respect for the law- [and there is plenty] Those kinda people regardless of skin color, THEY do matter less! It is up to each race to fix thier own stereotype. Fix the sterotype you will fix the problem. I’m tired of not being able to speak my mind for fear of being considered racist. I’m tired of the drive by’s in my nieghborhood. I’m tired of hearing BLM to the point you are gonna tell me it’s irrelevant that ALM.. and that it is racist to say that WLM. Ubsurd. Your opinion is no better than anyone elses!

    Like

    1. I don’t even know where to begin with addressing the racism, intolerance and stereotyping present in this statement. So I won’t try. I’ll simply say, I hope you read my piece again, and try to think about the Constitutionally guaranteed rights of freedom of expression, trial by jury and presumption of innocence all people are guaranteed.

      Grace and peace

      Justin

      Like

    2. NClax

      You’re wrong. But then again, you are also a person who admits to stereotyping and racism. I don’t think the author could have changed your mind. Maybe a change of scenery or some education will. Find out how the “ghetto” culture was created. Understand that cycles within communities are perpetuated and while you may live where you live due to temporary economic circumstances or life choices, some have always lived there and the cycle of poverty, addiction, gang affiliation etc… is all that they have ever seen. Understand that this culture was created and then policed. For profit. Know that you have more options than most of these people and that the black lives matter movement was created by blacks who see the futility of respectability.

      I have never lived in a ghetto. I am an upper middle class woman who owns her own home, the child of doctors, and I have experienced more discrimination and profiling than you ever will. Black lives matter is not about denying the necessity of policing criminals: it’s stating that all criminals should be innocent until proven guilty, not summarily executed in the streets like a dog. Hell, I’m sure you’d probably get out and march against someone who killed a dog! Let’s break this down to its lowest common denominator: racism exists. White privilege enables it. No matter where you live or what you’ve seen, if you are white you haven’t experienced it so you have NO basis of comparison. Therefore, unless you can and will be an ally, you should shut up about it. End rant.

      Like

      1. Reply

        I like the way you said that NClax. When you stated “find out how ghettos were created”… my understanding is that the Supreme Court ruled in 1954 that public school segregation was denying kids their 14th Amendment rights to equal protection under the law. So the schools in cities across America began to integrate. And there was pushback, which eventually led to white flight. Whites left the cities, and since whites were the majority of business owners, businesses left the city as well. Now we’re left living with the consequences of trying to end segregation during a time when there was still so much hate and racism… we’re still segregated, and the communities that white people and white businesses fled in the 60’s are now impoverished, and white people moved away from cities and turned farmlands into suburbs. Is that correct on a macro level?

        Are there specific ways in which white people or government intentionally created ghettos? Or was it more a product of the government trying to end segregation and white people just moving away?

        Like

  18. Sarah

    The part about the Blank Lives Matter “movement” that bothers me the mostt, is that they insinuate that white cops search of black men/women to kill them. When are they going to point out how black men/women kill so many innocent black men/women/children everyday with drive-by shootings, robbery, murder, drugs, etc. Or how so many black men/women kill so many white, Hispanic, Asian, Indian, etc. It goes both ways – stop making yourselves the victims.

    Like

    1. Cathy Thompson

      All lives matter, period. The Furgeson incident was justified. Anyone who says it wasn’t is in denial of the facts and looking for an excuse to incite.

      Like

    2. Sarah,

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

      This talking point people keep throwing out about “Black on black” crime is irrelevant to this whole debate. The point of the Black Lives Matter movement is the unjust murders of black men and women at the hands of police officers who are supposed to protect and serve them. This doesn’t insinuate a bad motive on the part of the officers; it merely states a reality. Officers aren’t the judge and jury of a potential criminal situation; their job is to descalate safely and quickly, so that the justice system can do it’s job. Too many times, that hasn’t happened in these cases. This is a real problem, and one that BLM works to bring to light. Black men and women haven’t made themselves the victim; they were made the victims by ongoing injustice.

      Thanks again for your feedback.

      Grace and peace

      Justin

      Like

    3. NClax

      Innocent until proven guilty. Until black Americans have the same access to the “justice system” as white Americans, the Black Lives Matter movement has a reason to exist and should be supported. I’m at attorney in the system (not a defense attorney), and I can tell you, policing is rigged against the lower classes and because such a large majority of the lower classes are minorities, they are disproportionately affected. Please read something. Please stop listening to the news. Please understand that your worldview is not the only one.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Chuck

    What I appreciate and believe about the motto: Black Lives Matter ” is that it is a focusing question on the examination of the very thing. A question we in America must bring to thought in our model of living. If they matter, then why all the startling ratios that are so obviously lopsided. If they don’t matter, then why not? How can we as citizens change that? For those reasons, and others, altering from original phrase greatly impacts the above questions.

    Fundamentally speaking, replacing one race with another in the phrase doesn’t suddenly become a “racist” phrase from the rally cry it began as, if it didn’t start out that way to begin with. It is inherently speaking singularly of A race, not in greater reverence but as thought provoking. Telling someone who is white/brown/yellow etc that they are turning a racist statement when their own color is expressed as “your color matters” is in no way going to win friends over.

    Furthermore, it is very OKAY to say Black Lives Matter IS about race. You can stop a train with the pile of facts that speak to this. But more importantly than it being about how blacks are mistreated it is unequivocally paramount that the systems that produce these results be altered or eliminated so that ALL people are truly given the same peace of mind within the systems put in place to serve the public.

    Like

    1. Chuck, I agree that in a vacuum, a phrase like “WLM” isn’t racist in and of itself. But the thing that makes it racist is that it is said exclusively in the context of rebutting BLM. People never said things like ALM or WLM until BLM was on the scene, and in this context, it is a rebuttal aimed at covering up the importance or necessity of BLM. That’s why I posit WLM to be racist.

      Thanks for reading, and for taking the time to comment.

      Grace and peace

      Justin DaMetz

      Like

  20. Reblogged this on R.R. Wolfgang and commented:
    Such a necessary and thoughtful message for all those who once, like me, thought there was nothing wrong with the statement “All Lives Matter.” There isn’t anything intrinsically wrong with it, but this post hit the proverbial nail on the head – it’s an unnecessary statement.

    Like

  21. Shelly Reswick

    I don’t think All Lives Matter is just unnecessary, I think saying that all lives matter is a way of belittling and being dismissive of the Black Lives Matters Movement. It is saying that BLM is unnecessary because all lives matter, not just black lives. It is a passive aggressive way of missing the point or dismissing the point of the BLM Movement. To me the statement all lives matter is just as racist as white lives matter because they both imply that BLM is nonsense rather than a reasonable reaction to injustice experienced time and time again. I am not African American and I am not a Christian. I am a little old agnostic Jewish lady who understands and supports BLM. I was very happy to stumble upon this article as I have not found much published in support of BLM, so thank you for writing this. As a supporter of BLM I am blown away by how many people just don’t get it. It is disheartening to see the negative blow-back generated by supporting BLM. I post the rare article I can find in support of BLM and I get messages about BLM chanting “pigs in a blanket, fry ’em like bacon” referring to the police. You wrote it is not our job to tell BLM how to run their movement, but so many white liberals were so put off by BLM tactics such as that chant and the interruption of the Bernie Sanders event, and calling white liberals attending that event raciest, etc. It is hard to know how to respond to people’s objection to these tactics. I understand why they do what they do, but it is so hard to explain to others because these tactics seem decisive.They are not out to win hearts and minds that is for sure, and I have to ask myself what is the desired outcome of these tactics. What I understand is that they have a right to express their displeasure with the inaction and thus complicity of white liberals, and they have the right to express their displeasure with the police, but I ask myself what if anything they are trying to achieve by using these tactics. How can I support BLM and defend these tactics?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Shelly Reswick

        Why wouldn’t they be dismissive about anything that is not black. Their movement is 100% about being black in America. That is like saying the ASPCA is dismissive of child abuse. Child abuse, while it is a horrific problem, is not within the scope of what the ASPCA does just as anything that is not black is not within the scope of what BLM was created to do.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Mixxster

        That is simply not true. While #AllLivesMatter and the mainstream media were basically ignoring the story, blacks on Twitter were posting about the
        Zachary Hammond killing by the police.

        Like

  22. Matt

    Funny how “BLACK LIVES MATTER” is ok yet “WHITE LIVES MATTER” is “flat out racist” this is a joke, the people that were “gunned down innocently by white police officers” we’re also proven to criminals and punishment was given on top of it, even though they did what they needed to do. No life on earth, forget America, no life on earth should be more important than others. Protest should be done peacefully like MLK and Ghandi, not riots and illegal activities. But then again that’s why “white cops gun black criminals down” this is not a movement. “BLACK LIVES MATTER” will not be in history books because it has a violent background that America would love to leave behind to the future generations. Want to make a change? Do it peacefully because fortunately that’s how eyes open. Last I checked gay marriage was legalized, how many violent riots and murders did they do to get that changed? Oh yeah none, but instead endured the long fight, endured the misery and endured all the hate crimes against them. So keep killing killing people and keep killing each other and see how much will change.

    Like

    1. Stonewall one of the biggest LGBT riots in American….Which lead to gay pride parades today. Where LGBT are targeted for beating and rapes. So to say none means you don’t know what you are talking about……

      Like

    2. Mixxster

      “…the people that were “gunned down innocently by white police officers” we’re also proven to criminals…”

      Matt, you are making blanket statements and you need to do some research. First of all, running from police, or cursing, or not being deferential enough are NOT grounds for an immediate death sentence.

      Secondly, what about people like…

      * Tamir Rice? Not only was he simply playing with a pellet gun, he wasn’t even given a chance by police. All you need to do is watch the video. No way they had to roll right up to the kid and immediately blast him away. There were multiple other ways to handle the situation but when you employ a known mentally unstable person, don’t be surprised when he acts irrationally.

      * Jonathan Ferrell? He was running to the police to get assistance after a car wreck.

      * John Crawford III? His “crime” was walking through Walmart with a BB gun

      That’s just 3 and doesn’t include unarmed people who were gunned down by police when family members called for medical assistance.

      “…and punishment was given on top of it, even though they did what they needed to do.”

      I’m assuming you mean the officers involved received punishment but that’s not true in most cases.

      Like

  23. Matt

    “when Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor,” no one stood up and yelled “Blessed is everyone!””

    If that happened today, it’d be followed by a bunch of yoyos with misspelled signs accusing Jesus of being a communist and “hating success” and “encouraging government dependency”.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Because people disagree with you and share that disagreement? There is no intolerance here; you are free to engage with others. But don’t expect no one to respond to you, and point out where we think your argument is false.

      Like

  24. Phillip

    I find your post biased and sporting many untruths.
    Specifically the part where you claim it is white cops killing blacks. There have been black cops that have been a part of these justifiable killings.

    I say justifiable because Michael Brown did not adhere to the demands of police officers. These orders are not just for their protection but for their own.

    If BLM so much, why are there sites with worldstarhiphop featuring videos of black on black crimes, what about the inner city attack of a white man and woman by dozens of blacks.

    If BLM why are they looting and pillaging their towns?

    I think saying BLM is ignorant. As is WLM and ALM.

    Stop being ignorant, follow to laws, if you dislike them, get an education, change them. Become a police officer, police your community. Be active, not reactive to this bullshit.

    Ps, I want to punch Kanye West in the mouth. Call me racist if you want, but he breeds ignorance.

    Like

    1. The largest number of police brutality cases involve a white officer; that said, cases involving a black officer are just as much of a problem. Here is the point: a police officer has the duty to protect and serve, to maintain the peace. A police officer is not empowered to carry out a death sentence on anyone without due process and a trial by jury. That is what is happening, and if you believe in our Constitution, then you should see the problem that this is. Michael Brown, whatever his faults or actions, did not deserve to die at the hands of a police officer. Darren Wilson is not empowered by the state to carry out capital punishment. That is why all of our police officers should be equipped with and trained to use FIRST incapacitating deterrents, like pepper spray or tasers. The first instinct shouldn’t be to pull a gun and kill someone.

      Like

      1. Stillapill

        First of all, the police have EVERY RIGHT to defend themselves from that of bodily harm, including the use of deadly force. Michael Brown attempted to take Officer Wilson’s gun and assaulted him, putting him at risk of grievous bodily harm or death. That shooting was completely justified, as proven by the facts and forensics.

        Further, several years ago the United States Supreme Court held that the police have NO responsibly to protect the public.

        Like

  25. Andrew

    If you are saying that “Black Lives Matter” is simply a way of saying “Black Lives Matter just as much as all other lives”, then I have no problem with BLM as a slogan. In such a case, BLM calls for rectifying the unjust undervaluing of black lives, and the resulting attitudes on a number of levels – from violence, to institutionalized racism, and many other issues. However, the article makes assumptions that are simply not givens. As just one example – the grand jury, and even the Obama DOJ, chose not to indict Darren Wilson for the shooting of Michael Brown. Simply put, the evidence does not appear to support the “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot!” narrative. This is extremely problematic for the protests in Ferguson (among other places) – and your article also assumes that the shooting of Michel Brown was proactively unjust, and was committed by a rogue, racist cop. But the evidence strongly suggests that, while tragic and sad indeed, the death of Michael Brown was not the intentionally racist act that it is portrayed by so many in the BLM movement.

    Like

  26. NClax

    I can’t. I can’t. The trolls are out in full force. Thank you for your article, but it’s clear that some people will never pick up a book or choose to educate themselves about this nation’s history. I mean, why should they have to do that, right? They just KNOW that black on black crime is the biggest cause of black deaths in the U.S. ; that desegregation put blacks on an equal playing field allowing them access to EVERY opportunity they and their forbears had; and that we just haven’t made anything of it. They also KNOW that police are being wrongly accused because they are being acquitted (or not indicted). I can’t. As a prosecutor, I see this crap everyday. I love my agents and officers, but trying to get them to understand that being a POC is not “reasonable suspicion” for being followed and stopped is…yeah. Wanna transport a couple hundred pounds of meth or coke? Get young white males in a nice car. It’ll get where it needs to go and you’ll find out about it a year later in a freetalk or on a wire… Give it to a Latino or Black person, it’ll get picked up in 30 miles and s/he will get 30 years. They’re usually the decoy and have a pound or two for good measure. They’ll still get the presumptive maximum though. America.

    Like

    1. Shelly Reswick

      Hi there,

      Thank you for all your thoughtful replies! I was wondering if you would reply to my comment because I am in a quandary! Please look for the comment by Shelly Reswick.

      Thank you!

      Like

  27. Shelly Reswick

    To take my previously stated analogy even further being offended by the creation of BLM and the negative reactions that ensue are akin to people getting offended by the existence of Child Protective Services because all beings should be protected from abuse, not just children, and then reacting by creating an agency aimed at dealing with abuse against any living beings. That would be silly.

    Like

  28. I’m highly disappointed in this article it will only spread us apart in the end. None of this focuses on the tell core issues in society. Attack the root problems in the Society and all of this will disappear. eTHErSEC

    Like

  29. Reblogged this on Me Out Loud and commented:
    I am encouraged every time I see people taking their time and energy to continue to explain and clarify why ‪#‎BlackLIvesMatter‬ is critical to the welfare and well-being of every human on this planet. We can never be our best selves as long as we deny others the same opportunity. “Acknowledging the existence of one injustice does not the negate the importance of others. Acknowledging the humanity of another person, or of a specific oppressed group, does not deny the humanity of everyone else.”

    Like

  30. Tripe like this was spewed out by the ton in the 1960’s and made about as much sense. I agree that Christians must understand why BLM exists and come to grips with the reality of what we face today, but this author is nothing more and one more banging drum with convoluted logic, a clear understanding of the obvious and no idea where to go next. I tire of folks like this.

    Like

    1. John,

      I think my logic and clear cut and well explained, and I have a really good idea of where we go next. what would you suggest we do to address the real injustices happening today?

      Grace and peace

      Justin DaMetz

      Like

  31. Please explain to me how BLM does not include BOBM (Black On Black Murder). I get the feeling of law enforcement is bias toward Black Americans, yes I don’t think it is fair or right, Isn’t it just as incorrect for a Black person to shoot another Black person? I am attempting to understand your premise is it that only BLMWWLEKT (Black Lives Matter When White Law Enforcement Kills Them) or BLM no matter how the life is taken. It is not fair or just when an individual is taken from the world by any means of violence. And lumping ALL white people into any statement is just as unjust as lumping ALL law enforcement, Black lives, or any group of individuals into an ALL or NONE anything. Please explain. Thanks

    Like

    1. Hi Dave,

      Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment.

      BLM is a movement focused on a very specific problem: police brutality victimizing black citizens, in place of due process and the justice system working correctly. This isn’t a statement that “black on black crime” may or may not be a problem. It is simply irrelevant to the goals of BLM, which is to make sure black men and women are afforded the same rights in dealing with police and the state that white people do. If the black community feels that black on black crime is a problem that needs a movement to address, then that is their prerogative to address as well, with white people again asking how we can help. But it just doesn’t have anything to do with the goals of BLM.

      Grace and peace

      Justin DaMetz

      Like

    2. Mixxster

      Contrary to the mainstream media and popular opinion, the black-on-black murder narrative is a canard. In the majority of homicides, victim and perpetrator are of the same race. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the percentage of white-on-white killings is 88% and black-on-black killings at 91%. Hardly a large enough difference for the constant droning about black-on-black murder as if it were an epidemic compared to white-on-white homicide.

      Like

      1. Reply

        Mixxster, I think the reason people are talking more about black on black crime is that black people kill roughly the same number of black people as whites people killing white people, so you’re right that the absolute numbers are close, but if black people are only 12% of the population, and white people are 63%, black people are killing each other at a rate more than 5X faster than whites kill whites. Yes, it is a big difference when compared to white on white crime. I think the mistake a lot of people make is to infer that these numbers mean that black people are inherently more dangerous. That’s where the racism comes in. People are allowed to acknowledge the problem of black on black crime, because there IS a big disparity, but I don’t agree with using these facts to support white supremacy. There are too many variables.

        Like

    1. Nora,

      I almost deleted your comment, because I have a “no personal attacks” policy here, but I’m curious: what cruelty and suffering have European whites suffered on a massive scale from racial minorities?

      Grace and peace

      Justin DaMetz

      Like

      1. Stillapill

        White settlers were attacked, killed, stolen, raped, burned out, raided, etc. during the American expansion. That fits your above-criteria.

        Like

  32. John Willis

    More white people are gunned down than black people. The percentage may be higher for black people but the percentage of violent crime for black people is also INSANE. Fix the ghettos, not the cops. Sorry to put facts in front of you, but its the truth.

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    1. John,

      Even if the absolute numbers are higher (or “INSANE” as you put it,) how many of those crimes are deserving of capital punishment? And, in what why does the crime rate of African Americans negate their constitutionally-guaranteed rights to due process and a trial by jury? Because that is the issue BLM is addressing.

      Grace and peace

      Justin DaMetz

      Like

  33. Bruce

    Justin,

    BLM is falling on deaf ears because of a credibility problem. Before I get to this I want to state that I am a black man thru and thru….proud to be black. But I find BLM exceedingly frustrating. Mr. Brown was found to have attacked Officer Wilson. Tried to get his gun. Please answer the question…..what was the officer supposed to do? When black folks are non compliant with lawful orders what should happen? What you and other BLM supporters are missing and simply don’t get is accountability. We want the police to be accountable but we as black folks are sorely lacking in this area. Why don’t we practice the accountability which we demand? Why can’t we not engage in behavior that puts us in direct conflict with police officers that could result in harm for both citizen and officer? Which brings me to the credibility issue……as long as we act like fools and kill each other for stupid reasons your pleas for accountability for police fall on deaf ears. Your tactics are a complete turnoff. Pigs in a blanket. Calling for the slaughter of police officers. Hijacking rallies and being obnoxious and rude when doing so. This is what people see and if you want people to get on board with your message you are going to have to do away with these things.

    Like

    1. Bruce,

      Thanks for reading, and for your thoughtful comments.

      I agree, accountability all around is a key asset that will reduce crime in this country. But accountability runs both ways. I don’t know what Officer Wilson is supposed to do in that situation. But I do know he killed a man, an unarmed man, and initially, the response from FPD was to not hold him accountable in any way. Neither you nor I nor anyone else knows exactly what happened there. All we have is the words of the man whose career and reputation was on the line. But I do know this: something stinks about it, especially in the light of so many thousands of dead black men and women at the hands of state power over the last one hundred years.

      As I said in my post, it’s not for me, a middle class white male, to tell BLM how to go about achieving the things they strive for. It’s not for me to be the “tone police.” That’s not helpful, and not my place. You, as a black man, have that right and responsibility. But regardless of this or that tactic, I still believe in and support the ultimate goal of BLM: racial justice and equality in the eyes of the law and the authorities.

      Again, thanks for you thoughtful comments. Grace and peace

      Justin DaMetz

      Like

      1. Stillapill

        We have much more than “just” Officer Wilson’s word as to what happened. We have forensic facts that prove trajectories and locations, etc. And we have statements from credible black witnesses that fully support Officer Wilson’s version of events.

        Like

  34. roy

    We need to say “All Lives Matter” for the sake of the non-human lives.

    “Not all abuse happens in dark alleys. Much unspeakable cruelty takes place in the brightly lit aisles where we purchase the flesh of animals, their eggs, their milk, their skin, their wool, their feathers, and their fur. Those brightly lit aisles conceal the horrible darkness where animals are confined, enslaved, tortured, and slaughtered for our pleasure. I will not share with you the gory details, but the awful truth is there for you to see, as plain as day.

    What makes some beings worthy of compassion, while others seem to merit only our disdain? Is it intelligence? Is it the ability to speak? Is it the actions we perform? No. Are we not called to feel compassion for the dull, the dumb, the infirm, and the disabled? Beings are worthy of compassion because they are sentient —they suffer, they feel pain.

    To desire only to reduce the suffering of human beings is nothing but extended selfishness. Are we not called by all the Holy Ones, the Prophets, and the Teachers of all faiths to care for all, even for the least among us? Did Jesus Christ not say: “Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me”?

    I come to you tonight not to judge you, but to implore you to look upon ALL our fellow sentient beings, human and non-human, with compassion. If we cannot prevent the cruelty they suffer, at least let harm not be inflicted for our pleasure, paid with our money, and executed in our name.

    We cannot speak sincerely of compassion while confining, abusing, and slaughtering our fellow sentient beings. Compassion begins in our shopping carts, in our closets, in our kitchens, on our plates.

    If I have made you uncomfortable, I apologize. I am not here to fight, but to get in the way. I humbly stand before you, as the Buddha instructed, trembling with compassion …for you and for all beings. May all attain the union of wisdom and compassion!” – Ven. Tashi Nyima

    Like

  35. AMB

    Regarding that “misunderstandings” picture at the beginning of the article: The reason for all the misunderstandings, is because of the vague nature of all of those statements, they can be interpreted many different ways. If you would like to not be misunderstood, be extremely literal, and say exactly what you mean. That way, there will be no doubt as to what you’re saying, and no way to misunderstand.

    Like

    1. I think those statements are pretty straight forward, literal, and easy to understand. Again, how does a statement like “Black lives matter” get turned by some into “ONLY black lives matter”? That’s not a problem with the statement; that’s a problem with the person interpreting it that way.

      Like

  36. Cielos

    Yesterday I wrote a post after watching videos from black crowds calling for the death of police officer and reading from CNN about the 26 police officers who were killed this year alone. I have many friends and clients who work in the police departments who are not racist but are frustrated to the lack of understanding of the split seconds they have to make a decision when a human being is charging at them.
    It isn’t that I don’t recognize that Blacks don’t suffer racism and social injustice I do. And it isn’t that I don’t recognize that there aren’t corrupt cops. I do. I was just as upset and saddened to watch the video of the police officer shooting a black man in the back.
    If equality is what is being taught for include all the other factions that are facing injustices t

    Like

    1. Cielos

      And scream for police to be respected as well. Don’t yell for them to be killed. Don’t damage people’s property. And demand for the media to report accurate information.
      Many of the people that you mentioned were committing a crime. And like the 2 brothers in Washington state that are now being charged after charging an officer with scare boards. They were out to harm the police officer. There were not going to stop as ordered. That officer didn’t fire his weapon with the thought “if they were white I wouldn’t be firing my weapon right now”. No. He saw 2 men with a skateboard and he had no way to hold both off at the same time. And while they didn’t have a gun last I checked people have been beaten to death with wood. So yes a skateboard can be a weapon.

      Like

    2. 26 officers have been killed, but what about the 700+ citizens that have been killed by the police this year? Where is their justice? Where is their due process? What is it that makes a cop capable of pulling and firing a gun, but incapable of pulling and firing a taser or mace? Why does the first instinct need to be “kill”? Why do we have such a problem understanding that cops carry an extra burden of responsibility that the average citizen doesn’t? These are real, pressing problems. They must be addressed.

      Like

      1. Stillapill

        The reality is that not all police carry tasers and tasers do not always work on an individual. You do not use less-than-kethal force when confronted with lethal force. (And yes, an unnamed person can present a lethal threat.)

        Like

    1. None of those statistics matter in light of one thing: every single American is entitled to the Constitutionally-guaranteed rights of due process and trial by jury. Police officers are not empowered to circumvent these rights.

      Like

      1. Reply

        Yes, every single American has the right to due process and trial by jury. But those statistics (if true) would make it seem that minorities have A LOT more encounters with law enforcement due to participation in violent crime, which correlates more highly to rates of police killings and incarceration… and that brings up a question:

        IF all races committed a percentage of crime that was proportionate to their population, and if police killed all races proportionately to their population, would we have a problem with police killing 700+ people per year? Before we knew that police were killing a disproportionate amount of black people, did we even care how many total people police were killing?

        I’m not asking this to be funny or rude, but honestly, before all the media attention to police brutality, if you had told me that police kill 1,000 people per year, I wouldn’t have batted an eyelash. I would have trusted the system because I didn’t know any better. Now we can see videos of Walter Scott being shot in the back multiple times trying to run away, and we can see evidence that the system isn’t always fair and just.

        Like

  37. Stalwart Sam

    Justin,

    I came to this article via a friend on FB, and was intrigued and hopeful for enlightenment on this topic. Truth be told, the BLM movement never had much credibility with me precisely because it began by making a martyr out of a villain and vilifying a good man. The investigation results were clear: Michael Brown attacked Officer Wilson, and went for his gun. At that point, Michael Brown forfeited his life when he escalated the situation to lethality.

    I came here because I thought you could show me something legitimate about this movement. Instead, you defended Brown’s evil. This wrecks the strength of your entire article. Racism, as defined, is about attributing superiority or inferiority to a single race. With that in mind, what evidence can you offer me that you’re not racist against white people? Or that you’re racist toward minorities by suggesting they get unequal favorable treatment (a la Affirmative Action)?

    Despite your statistics, there are many other questions and possible other explanations that I’m going to leave it alone and focus on the less technical issues..

    For a final note, it’s always theologically dangerous to declare that “Jesus sides/would side with my political/social/cultural/etc cause.” That’s how we get theological stupidity like the ‘Curse of Ham’. And, I can’t help but note, that you put Jesus on the BLM’s side first, and then you on his side. It’s not reassuring.

    Like

    1. Sam,

      Thanks for taking the time to read and comment.

      Let’s start by defining racism. Racism is discriminatory attitudes or behaviors towards a group of people because of their ethnicity or skin color, or some other defining characteristic of that population. My advocacy for equal treatment under the law, equal rights for all people, does not fall under this. That said, I believe all humans are racist, myself included, and it is our duty to identify racist tendencies within ourselves and try to work on them. To simply walk around and deny one’s propensity to racism is dishonest, and a pretty good sign that that person is a raging racist.

      I never defended Michael Brown’s actions or absolved him of any wrong doing. What I am saying is, he didn’t deserve to die in the street that day. He did nothing deserving of capital punishment. Darren Wilson was not empowered to waive his rights to due process or trial by jury. Neither you nor I was there to witness what happened that day. But I know that police officers have a special responsibility to wield power justly and proportionately, and to look for deescalate and resolve conflicts in ways that minimize death and destruction. I don’t feel that that is what happened here.

      Finally, this is a blog about Christianity and it’s intersection with culture and politics. Of course I brought Jesus into it. And for me to believe that Jesus would be opposed to BLM, but to still support it myself, would be 1) to act in a way that goes against my faith, and 2) to be mired in cognitive dissidence. Of course I believe I’m right, of course I believe my belief system lines up with BLM, and of course I believe my faith (Which I am committed to to the point of giving my life to ministry) lines up with BLM. I cannot logically or rationally operate in any other way. Jesus called us to lives of justice, of mercy, of focus on the “least of these.” The unjust deaths of minorities and oppression towards marginalized group is absolutely a place for Christians to take a stand, and invoke Jesus’ name in defending.

      Grace and peace

      Justin DaMetz

      Like

      1. Stillapill

        You stated, “…Neither you nor I was there to witness what happened that day. But I know that police officers have a special responsibility to wield power justly and proportionately, and to look for deescalate and resolve conflicts in ways that minimize death and destruction. I don’t feel that that is what happened here.”

        First of all, there is nothing in the police officer’s oath that grants or implies any special responsibility to do what you stated. Secondly, it is exceptionally hypocritical of you to say firstly that you weren’t there so you don’t know what really happened, but in the last sentence of the paragraph to pass judgment on the officer because you “don’t feel that that is what happened here.” Perhaps “Judge not lest ye also be judged” would be a better battle cry for you. For a student of criminal justice, you appear to be sorely uneducated.

        Like

      2. Stalwart Sam

        Justin,

        You’re welcome and thank you for replying.

        Let’s start with the easy one: cognitive dissonance. That’s how you spell it, just a heads-up for future conversations you might have.

        Now, onto the nitty-gritty, racism is a learned behavior and can be either positive (Jews are good with money) or negative (Asians are the Borg). I am surprised you don’t even defend my accusation and admit that you are indeed a racist. Now, your claim that everyone is a racist is inaccurate because, since it is a learned behavior, it is possible for people to be brought up in multi-ethnic households and never be taught those values. I have a cousin who has a white father and a black mother, and she’s not going to have this problem. From a larger perspective, she’s not the only one, as there are plenty of others who have been raised to treat all ethnicities with respect. Which begs this question: why do you support a lie? That you go so far as declare anyone denying that they are racist makes them a racist sounds like a bigoted judgement call. And one where the burden of proof is on you. (On a personal note, I thought progressives were taught not to make such sweeping, judgmental statements about people they’ve never met?)

        As Stillapill points out, you are being a hypocrite, saying that we can’t know what was happened but immediately make a judgement call. One that accuses Wilson of wrong-doing. But I’m going to address something else here. This wasn’t capital punishment. Officer Wilson wasn’t executing Brown. He was defending himself from a hostile combatant in a life-or-death situation. And, like Stillapill said, you condemn Wilson for defending his life. Unlike Christians, police officers are not obliged to become matyrs for Christ. They have the right to self-defense.

        While I appreciate that you’re not damaging your integrity, you’re missing the point. As others have pointed out, there are legitimate criticisms aimed at the BLM movement. While you are convinced of their righteousness, that doesn’t mean they are in the right. So, it is one thing to say “I believe God is leading me to support this group” versus “Jesus is standing with us!” One statement admits that perhaps we don’t see the full picture, while the other one blatantly places God somewhere without his explicit say-so. It’s dangerous waters. One that edges toward arrogance and sin. So, unless God told you specifically that he is with the Black Lives Matter movement, I don’t trust your assessment of his position.

        Finally, until the BLM movement owns up to the fact that Brown was in the wrong, I won’t trust this movement. I had hoped that you would show me that there are members of the movement who are aware of this and agree that it is injustice. Not defend this travesty against Truth.

        Like

  38. Fed Up

    This article is rubbish. To quote you – “Racism is not the acknowledgment of race. Racism is not being aware of race.” Is it not the black community that continually cries foul and brings awareness of race to situations where it has otherwise not been discussed. To say that White Lives Matter is racist is self-righteous, self-focused, poverty mentality at it’s worst.

    I suppose it’s my fault as a white man that this guy feels the need to declare “open season on killing white people.” He probably feels disadvantaged because his great-great-great grandfather was a slave.

    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/09/03/black-supremacist-its-open-season-on-killing-white-people-and-cops/

    Like

    1. Just as I’m sure you would argue white supremacists don’t speak for all whites everywhere, I don’t think this joker speaks for all blacks, or for BLM.

      White people don’t need to invoke racism constantly. We are the dominant group; we get the benefit of the doubt, we get deference and assumed superiority just by who we are. The assertion by others that they matter, that their rights are equal to ours, that there are still racist systems and institutions in the world, is not a negation of white people, or a devaluing of white people. It is the realization of the idea of “all men are created equal,” and the working to make that a reality.

      Like

  39. Devra M

    Justin,

    I have just begun the first steps of becoming active in the BLM movement. Explaining why ALM is missing the point is so hard to do and you’ve done well here.

    My question is more personal in nature: to what church do you belong, because I’ve been in search of a home which matches my personal belief system and if your church holds the same views you’ve expressed here, I’d like to learn more.

    Here is a posting I made recently on the topic of BLM. I am interested in any advice you might have on strengthening my words.

    Thank you!

    ” I tend to try to avoid “hot button topics,” but I feel I need to clearly share my position on this issue.

    Historically our society treats non-whites with less dignity, respect, and opportunity. There have been so many studies, statistics, examples, and documentaries showing these differences that I can’t begin to keep count.

    If you’re black you are more likely to die or be harmed in police custody than a white person, regardless of your guilt. You are more likely to have an investigatory traffic stop. You are more likely to receive a longer, harsher sentencing for the exact same crime as a white person. If you have a non-white sounding name you are less likely to be called for an interview, even with identical credentials.

    These things are facts. Many of us, as individuals, may believe that all people are created equal and should have fair and equal application of the law and that is wonderful, unfortunately it does not change the above facts. Our country has stated that all lives are equal. We have passed amendments, laws, and even a Declaration of Independence stating we believe this to be true, but the above facts show the implementation is still lacking.

    The Black Lives Matter movement is about bringing these problems into the light so that we, as a society, can take steps to change the generalized and often inadvertent racism and prejudice in our justice system.

    When someone says Black Lives Matter, they are not somehow implying that white life doesn’t matter, or that police life doesn’t matter, they are simply, so simply, asking that we include them when we respond “yes, all lives matter,” which is a phrase only growing in popularity once people stood up for black lives.

    Insert a few words and it makes it easier to understand what the movement is about…

    “Black lives should matter to our justice system as much as white lives and we should have equal treatment under the law.”

    If you can’t agree with that statement you need to do some soul-searching.

    I am my brother’s keeper, and there is no freedom until we are equal. When my best friend is treated with less regard for his life by those in power than I, purely because of the color of his skin THAT IS NOT OKAY.

    These murderers who are attacking police officers for no reason other than the color of the uniform they wear deserve the highest and strongest enforcement of the law against them. They have broken the law in one of the worst ways possible, they took a life out of pure hate, out of a want for attention, out of malice, and that IS NOT OKAY.

    I am saddened by the reality of some parts of our society, but I have faith and hope we can change it together. If you believe all lives matter, then you should help fight to make sure yours doesn’t matter more than your neighbors just by virtue of the color of your skin.

    Thank you for your time.”

    Like

    1. Hi Devra

      Thanks for reading, and for taking the time to comment!

      I think your statement is great, and needs no critiquing from me. And feel free to steal arguments from me at your convenience, if it helps your own advocacy 🙂

      As for church, I currently attend a church in Tulsa called East Side Christian Church. We are part of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) denomination, in which I am also pursuing ordination as a minister. ESCC is open and affirming towards our LGBT brothers and sisters, social justice-minded, and outwardly-oriented. In short, it is a great church home.

      In general, the DOC is a really wonderful denomination. We are congregational, meaning each church is independent in terms of structure and leadership and theology. But we are still connected by a central authority that helps us support one another. I would suggest checking out a DOC church in your area! Visit http://www.escc.org for more info about my church, or http://www.disciples.org for more DOC info.

      Good luck in your search, and your advocacy, and let me know if I can help in any way!

      Grace and peace.

      Justin DaMetz

      Like

    2. Stillapill

      Actually, the number of white males killed by police in the last few years was much higher than the number of black males killed by police. Check your facts.

      Like

  40. Claire

    ALL lives matter. White, Black, Red, Brown- Whatever! Unwarranted killing on all sides MUST stop. And if it’s true that Blacks are responsible for 50% of the murders then isn’t that more than our share considering that we (Blacks) are only 13% of the population? I mean it sound like you’re saying that a mere 13% of the population is responsible for as many murders as Caucasians are- when whites make up a good 80% of the population. Doesn’t sound quite right to me ( a strong Black woman that doesn’t fall for any BS).

    And for anyone reading this, please consider that cops come in MANY skin colors. Not all cops are white. It’s a fallacy that so many folks are falling into these days.

    Like

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