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.

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March 26, 2018 10:40 am

This post was absolutely outstanding to me for the simple fact you had events and examples of what you were saying so you can back it up. i find it almost outrageous that history does nothing but repeat itself. might not be a major issue like the slaves but this is a huge issue and if someone doesn’t do something to stop it it will continue to grow as a problem. Stephon being killed in his own backyard is crazy. your not even safe at home anymore. how do you mistake a phone for a weapon? that’s sad these cases get more fishy and fishy as time goes on and nobody such as government officials seem to care it’s like they want the African American race to be exiled. this has always been a problem but now the police violence and killings are getting out of control big time.

Sophia W
March 25, 2018 8:32 pm

Thank you Ty’Arika for your insightful post! I found your comparison for teachers and administrators helpful, the experience of not being given acknowledgement for your work is something that should help many people empathize and understand the need to elevate the youth voices in the black lives matter movement.

To me, your analysis also relates to the need for critical consumption of media: what people and movements do our newspapers and TV shows cover? How can we make sure we are learning about and supporting marginalized voices when we make choices about what articles we read, post, and share?

Jack Erlbaum
Reply to  Sophia W
March 27, 2018 2:33 pm


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