Author: Ty’Arika

https://www.youthvoices.live/2018/03/25/55122/

Why does one movement get more support than another?

Black Lives Matter will never receive the recognition nor support that other modern protest have gotten. The movement is against violence and systematic racism towards African- Americans. When the movement first came to surface, as a child, I believed it was doing something and actually getting the publicity it deserved. I was wrong.

After the 2018 Parkland school shooting, I realized that lives that are lost matter, but not if they are black. Seeing the ‘Times’ magazine cover, celebrities marching with #MarchForOurLives and all other supporters that are behind this rally, it really broke my heart. I am not here to bring light to the situation. However, Black Lives Matter has been a movement for over 5 years, and hasn’t had nearly as much support nor change than a situation that didn’t even happen 5 months ago did. In the year 2017, police had already killed 500 unarmed African-Americans in the first 7 months. Some celebrities that have even stood up for this movement have been shamed and are even unemployed!

Teachers/Administrators, imagine being in a meeting and making a valid point, then being ignored or maybe even disgraced or even called a thug. To later realize that a colleague of yours, rather a privileged one, stole that idea of yours but changed the name. Maybe they even guided the light of your point on to an entirely different discussion, which is okay. But then they receive more recognition than you. Their idea blows everyone away and next thing you know their idea is being viewed by the country. It’s being publicized and praised. When yours was barely heard. Even though you spoke loud and clear, you held rallies, you held a protest, you brought issues to the surface.

“I am here to acknowledge and represent the African- American girls whose stories don’t make the front page of every national newspaper, whose stories don’t lead in the evening news. I represent the African American women who are victims of gun violence, who are simply statistics instead of vibrant, beautiful girls full of potential.”
-Naomi Walder, age 11

Stephon Clark, a 22-year-old black man with 2 sons. Sitting in his OWN backyard with a cellphone in his hand that was mistaken for a gun, and was shot 20 times. You read that correctly. There was no communication whatsoever. Which means Stephon was unable to explain himself. The students at parkland were unable to explain themselves. Both caused by ruthless acts of gun violence. Both victims are innocent. Both the #MarchForOurLives and #BlackLivesMatter movements are necessary. They both narrow down to the same problem. Gun violence.

So why is it that one movement gains more support than the other? No one should pick one to be behind. I am not saying that the March for our lives shouldn’t be getting as much praise as they are. But I am saying there is no way that Black Lives Matter shouldn’t be getting the same.