It’s sad that I’m breaking my blogging break by writing about something as tragic as the recent events involving #AltonSterling and #PhilandoCastile amongst others who have been killed at the hands of police officer.
If like myself you have seen the gruesome uncut footage and images of last moments of these men, you probably also feel disturbed and deeply troubled. Seeing people who look like you, other black people being slain repeatedly is traumatic and the fact that it is a constant reality is extremely troubling. When unarmed individuals are killed by the very people who are supposed to protect them; when killers are released free with no conviction; when children are being shot; it is a reminder that the colour of your skin has an effect on how you will be treated in life.
This is an injustice. When the news you see is being inundated with horrific news of black people being killed repeatedly and unjustly, it is an injustice. The birth of #BlackLivesMatter back in 2014 is a response to this injustice. It is an affirmation that the lives of black people matter JUST like the lives of others matter. In a world which is portraying black lives as expendable and unimportant it is necessary to place emphasis on the value. It should be the standard that every single human being has a life of equal value, #AllLivesMatter if you will, but the fact that this is being shown to not be the case is the whole reason for the BLM movement. It is a reminder; it is an affirmation. Black lives are INCLUDED. They ALSO matter.
A dilemma I had was whether I should get involved in protest that were taking place in London. I am not an African American and this made me question whether protesting should be something that I should do. It definitely is. No matter where you are located in the world, regardless if these issues are affecting you directly, if you are outraged and angry, you should make your voice heard. Supporting an issue from the other side of the world is a sign of solidarity or support. Imagine a world where social injustices were never spoken on because they didn’t affect us directly. That would be immoral. We can become activists for Harambe the gorilla but turn our heads at murdered innocent black men. Not on.
Protesting or marching or vocalising your outrage on the situation at hand from wherever location you are as a non-American is not pointless. It shows respect for the victims; it shows solidarity for the overseas black community; it shows unification. We can stand with the victims of Paris; we can stand with the victims of Orlando. We can definitely stand with the victims of police brutality. #BlackLivesMatter