AG Jeffrey Sessions called Black activists ‘Black Identity Extremists.” I mean, why not? There is no reason to not be angry or in any type of agreement with how greater White culture in bed with white supremacy has treated Black lives. We have to start, and have started, screaming, “BLACK LIVES MATTER!” because unless we get serious about being heard, we won’t be! Since the creation of Black Lives Matter, coupled with the history of lynching and chattel slavery, how could we have ever kept track of who we lost or was taken from us?
These hashtags of lost lives feel like the most morose photo album. The names take us back to places, and people and we remember. We keep remembering, we keep fighting, because we cannot afford to die! We say their names, pointing them out with hands that shake, or voices that are shrill and say, “Black lives matter! We will not be slaughtered to silence!”
Like any family that is determined to keep records of triumphs and tragedies, we realize what it means to keep record. We know the value of memory and remembering. These hashtags attached to the names of the taken, remind us of three things:
- Their lives mattered
- Their lives are more than their deaths
- We remember why we fight
We share the hashtags for outrage. We share them to assemble those who need to be aware this is still happening to Black and Brown people. We share because we will not be erased; it is not an option! Why should it be? Racism isn’t dead, and white supremacy is a poisonous fruit of it. We counteract racism with love and accountability. These hashtags, our protests, our voices, our outrage–this represents the duality of protesting, of this movement.
Love for our people.
Accountability for a system that took them and allows their murderers to be free and employed.
Love demands accountability and justice! It does not, will never, whisper for it! Love will always demand the fullness expression of this action–and that is justice. We demand justice from the nation and system we have see discards anything which is intrusive on the myth of the Almighty White Savior. We protest to topple the idol this nation worships, showing it the reflection of itself and its cruelty–one hashtag at a time. We will fight until there are no more to be added to this album.
We fight, because cannot afford to die.
We fight, because we refuse to have the world that craves our silence to kill us twice.
Black Lives Matter–Blue Lives Never Existed.
[image from The Pittsburgh Foundation]