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Is All Lives Matter a legitimate protest for equality? Show more Show less
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In 2013 policeman George Zimmerman was acquitted of murder, after shooting black teenager Trayvon Martin to death. Many saw this as an example of racially motivated police brutality, and symptomatic of wider racial prejudices in the West. As public outrage grew, "Black Lives Matter" (BLM) became a rallying cry across the internet to protest against these injustices. The "All Lives Matter" (ALM) movement mobilised in response, seeing BLM as an affront to non-black rights. This has divided people. ALM argues that achieving an equal society requires inclusivity, and that focusing only on black lives is misleading and offensive to non-blacks. Meanwhile, their critics see the ALM movement as proof that black lives remain unequal. It is regarded as a problematic campaign. One that gives non-blacks license to distract from the uneven levels of inequality and prejudice faced by black people, and undermine their cause. With public figures including Richard Sherman , Ben Carson and Tim Scott active supporters of All Lives Matter, is it a legitimate protest for equality? Or does this campaign only deepen existing prejudice?

No, All Lives Matter is not a legitimate protest for equality Show more Show less

All Lives Matter is a movement to distract attention from inequalities faced by blacks. As UC Irvine Anthropology Professor Theo Goldberg explains: "The universalizing politics of “All lives matter” is one of racial dismissal, ignoring, and denial."
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All Lives Matter is a form of White Fragility

White Fragility refers to white performative outrage in response to accusations of racism. It is a distracting strategy to avoid engaging with the issue of racial prejudice. All Lives Matter typifies this phenomenon.
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The Argument

The All Lives Matter movement reflects a view of racial dismissal, ignoring, and complete denial of reality. Philosopher Chris Lebron describes the movement as a "disingenuous retort" that misunderstands the problem raised by Black Lives Matter proponents. On Real Time with Bill Maher, Maher expressed support for use of the "Black Lives Matter" phrase, stating that "All Lives Matter implies that all lives are equally at risk, and they're not". In July 2016, USA Today concluded from the thoughts of Columbia University sociology professor Carla Shedd, that using the phrase "'All Lives Matter' can actually be interpreted as a racist". It also cited professor Joe Feagin, who said that white people use the phrase "All Lives Matter" to belittle the Black Lives Matter movement, which he described as "already about liberty and justice for all." USA Today reported that some celebrities who had tweeted using the hashtag #AllLivesMatter, including Jennifer Lopez and Fetty Wap, deleted the tweets and apologized. Wap stated that he did not understand the hashtag.[1]

Counter arguments

The All Lives Matter movement does exactly what it says it does; it stands for all life. In 2016, American football player Richard Sherman, who is African American, supported the All Lives Matter message, saying, "I stand by what I said that All Lives Matter and that we are human beings." He wanted African Americans to be "treated like human beings" and did not want innocent police officers being killed. In June 2015, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton faced severe backlash after using the phrase "all lives matter" at an African-American church in Missouri during her presidential campaign. Clinton has proven herself in the eyes of the African American community, which shows that she should have been credited and not backlashed for saying the phrase "All Lives Matter".


Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Monday, 21 Sep 2020 at 05:35 UTC

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