Teague: What is Black Lives Matter? | Paterson Times Paterson Times

Teague: What is Black Lives Matter?

By Corey Teague
Published: July 11, 2016


Black Lives Matter (BLM) is an activist movement trying to effect social change and seeking racial equality, originating in the African-American community, that campaigns against violence and killings against Black people by Law Enforcement officers, racial profiling, police brutality, racial harassment and racial inequality in the United States criminal justice system that targets Blacks using the 13th Amendment to the Constitution from 1865 (Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, EXCEPT as a punishment for a crime where of the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States).

It is NOT Anti-Police, Anti-White or Anti-Anyone else. However, Black people as a race have suffered from 250 years of Slavery, Torture, Lynching, KKK Terrorism, 100 years of Jim Crow Laws, Segregation, Civil Rights Violations, Continued Racism, Discrimination, Police Killings and Racial Inequities in all areas of living the American dream.

Black people have a long history of being mistreated in America dating back to the 1600s and they just want a voice to say enough is enough. Black people have a lot to be angry about but America doesn’t seem to care. Black people only account for 12% of the total population but they are 2 1/2 times more likely to be killed by Law Enforcement than any other race in America.

The War on Drugs, heavily criminalized, was created in 1969 by President Nixon as a ruse to target, arrest and incarcerate Black people for something as minor as marijuana use to disrupt Black communities and is still used today as a tool by Law Enforcement as probable cause to detain and arrest Black people while the Criminal Justice System has manifested itself into a racial discrimination institution causing misery and suffering for Black people.

When the sheepdog becomes the wolf, the flock will eventually stand up and protect themselves because they see no difference between the sheepdog and the wolf and the idea of protect and serve has failed the flock. All they are trying to say is that Black lives are just as important as White lives. Black families mourn the loss of their loved ones and feel the same pain as White people when they lose a loved one or the city loses a police officer.

I do not condone the killing of Law Enforcement Officers for the racist problems of America or in response to the Criminal Justice System that unfairly targets and punishes Black people more severely than White people.

There are many good police officers and deputies in America but there are also some that shouldn’t have a badge and gun. Some of those officers are active members of the KKK. Black people just want to be treated fairly, equally and with the justice that White America receives. The Declaration of Independence claims that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

This however seems to have excluded Black people as the history of Blacks in America is far from what the founding fathers promised.

Corey Teague
Former school board member and activist

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