By Shalini Kumar via Immigain
The Black Lives Matter movement has been ongoing since 2013 but has arguably had the most momentum since its upbringing following the death of George Floyd. Since then protests springing from the root of the issue – Minneapolis, Minnesota to all fifty states and even crossing the borders to Syria, Belgium, and others. This overwhelming support has been a large step for the movement in achieving the ultimate goal of social and racial equality. However, in order to rebuttal against this movement, the phrase “All Lives Matter” has been trending aiming to call out the alleged “racism” and “hypocrisy” in the Black Lives Matter movement claiming that it essentially put the lives of black people above the lives of all other – going to show the blatant lack of acknowledgment and empathy for victims of police brutality and other hate crimes. Nonetheless, it is important to understand the Black Lives Matter is a movement whereas All Lives Matter is simply a statement of retaliation. All Lives Matter simply misses the bigger picture and fails to address the issues at hand but what we as POC can do to help the movement is to simply take part in allyship. As POC it is important that we rise up and speak out for Black Lives Matter because we more than anybody should understand and empathize with this group of people. As a POC, this movement is not about yourself, your life matters but it is hypocritical to claim discrimination due to your race and not help another group fighting for the same cause. Although the Black Lives Matter Movement may not encompass your racial and social struggles as a POC, it is important to understand that this fight is not for you but rather the benefit of those who have encountered marginalized racism and stand with those who will stand for you.
The allyship towards the movement consists of not just victims of the issue at hand but other minority groups as well, strengthening the solidarity of the movement as a whole. It is extremely important that POC take a part of this because it is not a movement that is black versus white, black versus brown, and certainly not black versus black, for those who bring up black on black crime rates as an argument, but it is us versus the system – a system that is negatively impacting POC as well. If, as a POC, the system’s injustice angers you, fight back and stand with the Black community.
However, being an ally consists of a lot more than just sharing posts to your Instagram story. While that is beneficial, make sure you are having conversations with your friends and family about BLM and either educate them on American History, especially with immigrant parents or talk about what you can do to help and what changes you can make to become a better ally. Sign petitions, they only take a few seconds to complete. Email and call your state officials (senators, governors, other members of congress, etc.) and demand reform. If you can, donate to the several organizations in place that benefit the movement. Lastly, support black-owned restaurants, clothing stores, and other businesses.
Although the importance of POC standing with the BLM movement was highlighted in this post, it is important that, regardless of your race, you use your voice to be an ally to the black lives matter movement.