Black Lives Matter vs. Black lives, matter.
I get it.
I get not wanting to align yourself with an organization whose mission is unclear, whose leaders are unknown and whose purpose seems difficult to decipher.
I’ve been vegan for nearly 15 years and I'm not quite on board with everything that PETA does to get their message across. But I remind myself often that not supporting the organization doesn’t mean I’m not for the movement. I will always fight for animal rights and convince people that a plant based lifestyle could save the planet.
So when it comes to Black Lives Matter, I understand people’s resistance. I understand the confusion. I understand not knowing what it is we are fighting for.
I too have found myself asking questions, perplexed by certain statements, confused as to who is leading the movement and so on and so forth.
It’s troubling. As easy as it is for people to connect Martin Luther King to the Civil rights movement in the 60’s, I wish we had a distinct face to follow during our journey now.
But let’s take the organization out of the equation for just a minute and look at the phrase.
BLACK. LIVES. MATTER.
It’s simple. And quite honestly there shouldn’t be any form of a rebuttal to that statement.
It doesn’t say Black lives matter more or only black lives matter. It’s simply says, they matter.
So I ask you…..Do Black lives matter?
It’s a simple yes or no question.
If your answer to this question is yes, but it follows with “but, All lives matter", then your problem is with the word black, and you are racist and can stop reading this blog.
But if your answer is simply yes, then I ask you this: why can’t it just stop there?
Why not just emphatically make the statement that black lives matter to let an entire race of people know you support them and believe in their fight for equality?
Why not state that black lives matter because history has shown that the America we live in has not treated them as such.
No one is asking you to align yourself with an organization.
No one is asking you to support “looting and rioting".
We as a people are simply asking for you to acknowledge that America as a whole has a long history of wronging Black lives for something as simple as the color of their skin.
And it’s about time that changed.
Malynda Hale is a recording artist, actress, business owner and activist. Her passion for using her voice to effect change on multiple platforms social justice, female empowerment, LGBTQ+ rights, veganism, and the Black Lives Matter movement. She is the creator of #WeNeedToTalk, a podcast and blog that centers around important issues within politics, entertainment and culture. She currently serves as a worship leader at Harmony Toluca Lake where she leads a bi-monthly discussion group called "Courageous Conversations" that focuses on social justice topics from a Christian perspective. She is an avid promoter of a lifestyle centered around a plant-based diet and has been a vegan for over a decade.