For years, I felt conflicted about the Black Lives Matter movement. I’m an upper middle class, white female, living in one of the most affluent counties in the country; I’ve never been discriminated against.
So I couldn’t understand why people of color kept demanding to matter more than everyone else.
And then George Floyd was murdered.
And my eyes were opened. Opened to the daily struggles for people of color. Opened to the concept of systemic racism – what systemic racism is, how it affects people of color in their day-to-day lives, and how it continues for generations. Opened to the injustices people of color suffer in our justice systems, our medical systems and our political systems. Opened to how my feelings that “we’re all the same” weren’t enough to truly be anti-racist.
And most importantly, my eyes were opened to the fact that people of color aren’t demanding to matter more…they are demanding to matter. Period.
Not long after George Floyd was murdered, I read a social media post that really hit home for me. It showed a picture of a little girl, holding a sign…and the tagline said something along the lines of: if my mother just died of breast cancer, and I told you “breast cancer sucks” would you respond with “well, really, all cancers suck”? No. You wouldn’t. Because you’d realize that – right then – I need you to hear that breast cancer sucks, and that it’s taken someone important away from me. Black Lives Matter is the same: we know all lives matter…but right now, black lives are the ones we need you to hear about.