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Does My Life Matter?

During the height of a pandemic, several black men and women lives were taken by police and it screams the question “Does my life matter?”. The videos of these murders circulating the internet has brought a cold chilling answer that to America, Black lives don’t matter. From times slavery to present day, black people have been tortured, raped, beaten and killed from the woods and swamps of the deep south to the city streets in the North.

While many want to bring up black on black crime as a rebuttal to police brutality, it only shows how little our lives mean. To use black on black crime as justification, one must understand what created black on black crime. To see that its only purpose is to hide all the crimes that actually happen to black people. During slavery black men were forced to fight one another for the entertainment of their masters, and given how long slavery lasted it is clear to see that the behavior was deeply embedded into the black men. In addition, the separation of black people by skin tone, which gave birth to the tension that still stands today with colorism.

It is true that for any black person to shout “#Black Lives Matter” is stating that ALL black lives matters. Because the black community is filled with various lifestyles it’s important to know that standing for one you must stand for all. That doesn’t mean you have to agree with what everyone does in their homes, it just means regardless of our differences we stand together. It means we accept that we are all different and it is that what makes us so unique. Through our unique cultural differences we have created music, art, inventions, games, fashion, architecture and more. There is no simple way to explain our culture because to each black person our culture it just that OURS and we get it.

I bring back the question I stated earlier “Does my life matter?” being a black, bisexual man I face conflicts from two spaces one within my own community and the one outside of my community. With the looks of embarrassment and ridicule from the black community for being anything other than straight. To the constant bombardment from the outside world that I’m a lazy, stupid, drug selling, short temper, poor, uneducated nigger. Knowing that regardless of the job I have, and the education I possess, I can still be seen as a threat to any person that does not look like me and have my life taken with little to no justice.

As the black community stands together to address ongoing abuse toward our existence, we also stand as individuals fighting to be respected and recognized as such. Our connection is more then skin deep, it’s engraved into our bones, and embedded into our DNA. Our history goes far beyond slavery and our future is protected by the blood of our ancestors. As we raise our fists in the air, let’s shout  “All black lives matter” because all is one and one is all.

Written by: Tyrone Thomas-Wesley

Edited by: London Reeves


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