It is ridiculous how many people get triggered when we say, “Black lives matter.” The Black Lives Matter movement was started because people of color (POC) were being treated poorly and possibly killed for the color of their skin. Those in opposition to the movement immediately assume that people of color are bad because their skin tone is not like their own. My motto is, “Unless you hurt yourself or others (me included) you are my friend,” and it is simple as that.
When I heard about the Black Lives Matter protest that was going to happen in my hometown, all my friends and I prepared to go and show our support. My mom was so intent on me being careful she almost didn’t let me go. I heard about all the peaceful protests turning violent whether it was the protestors, cops, or random people in the area, so, of course, I understood where her worry came from. My friends and I packed a first aid kit, extra water bottles, portable chargers. I brought an extra phone that my father had in case our phones got taken away. We wrote our parents’ numbers on our arms and set a meeting point in case things took a bad turn quickly and we got split up. Luckily it didn’t happen and this protest stayed peaceful. I remember that during the (peaceful) protest a man at one of the restaurants we passed got up from his table and started to scream at us that all lives matter. It’s almost funny that people who don’t support the BLM movement and counter-argue that all lives matter is just them trying to hide the fact that they are racist. I do agree that all lives matter, but the fact is everyone is created equal and no one should be put down for being themselves. This movement was created because all around America, African Americans are still being discriminated against, wrongfully incarcerated, and even killed by law enforcement for the sole purpose that cops see evil embedded into their skin.
Protests are still happening to this day, but I have decided to support from afar for this purpose. I was in Portland not long ago and when I took a wrong turn there was a pool full of cops in the middle of the street holding their bats. I am not saying that it is all the police’s fault for the protest turning violent, but I sure was scared of the police that night and I didn’t know how I should feel about it. So, yes, all lives do matter, but people of color are the ones who need the most attention since they are getting hurt. And hurting goes against my motto. — Rachel Hall
Photo: Damian Lillard Marching in Portland Protest. (Matthew Almon Roth- Creative Commons)