As protests are going on around the country [and the world] over the death of George Floyd at the hands of police, I've seen a statement that we really need to deal with.
That statement is "All Lives Matter" -- which is pretty much always used by a white person in response to someone saying that Black Lives Matter.
If you are one of those people, please stop.
You may have good intentions. You may firmly believe that the color of someone's skin shouldn't change their worthiness as a human being -- and you're right, it absolutely shouldn't. But replying 'all lives matter' to anyone advocating for justice and equity for black people is like showing up to a breast cancer research fundraiser to yell about how other types of cancer matter, too.
Black people are suffering, and they deserve our collective focus, care and attention. If you truly believe that all lives matter, then you need to stop saying it from behind your keyboard and start putting in the work to address the inequities in our society that consistently contribute to the loss of black lives.
And as many people that like to use "all lives matter" are also prone to posting quotes from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr in an attempt to prove that they aren't racist, take it from his daughter, Bernice. All Lives Matter is the goal.
I've been encouraged to hear from so many white people over the last week about their desire to get involved and do better when it comes to supporting our black communities. Better late than never.
So if you are also asking yourself how you can make a difference, just having the All Lives Matter/Black Lives Matter conversation with someone who needs to hear it is a good place to start. It's on us to talk to our friends, families, colleagues and neighbors about racism, even if it's uncomfortable. And it's going to take more than showing up to a protest or using a hashtag when tensions are high. It's on us to educate ourselves, organize and vote to make sure that the meaning of the phrase 'All Lives Matter' is actually modeled out in our society.
Keep scrolling for learning resources and calls to action.