All lives matter movement

Repurposed slogan is stealing the spotlight

After the rise in recognition of racial oppression toward black people, there were many rising emotions and responses, one being: “all lives matter!”
Why of course all lives matter! Why wouldn’t they? However, “black lives matter” is a cry of people who are tired of being degraded; a cry that black people are proud and valuable. When individuals reclaim this movement as “all lives matter,” they are stealing the show. Black Americans are trying to bring attention to the fact that they are being snuffed out carelessly, either by literally having their lives taken or figuratively through less opportunity, discrimination and overall subservient treatment.
After all, America does not see these large gatherings as protests and riots for no reason. No one would take the time or risk their safety by protesting unless they felt like it was the last resort. Despite violence towards peaceful protesters in Baltimore and Ferguson, members of all races still marched on. There is no cause to do that except one that has not been solved by any simpler means.
“All lives matter” is also a violent message because all lives mattering was never the question. It is in response to a people trying to point out their oppression and undervalue by defusing the attention and spreading it to white Americans, whose lives are already valued disproportionately more politically, socially and economically. Consider this: if your friend told you their mom died today, would you still feel the need to tell them that your phone broke today? No, of course not. What they are saying is far more impacting to them.
At the end of the day, all lives do matter. Had anyone stated this phrase before “black lives matter” became the slogan for the second coming of the civil rights movement, there would have been no harm, no foul. Yet, it is harmful when it is a response to the anguished and oppressed cry of black Americans.
All lives matter, but right now, in this moment, deserved attention is on black lives.
Lydia Taylor is a college student, political activist and a white woman who understands it is not always appropriate for white people to have the spotlight.