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Concerning your research and remarks on Black Lives Matter, I should like to stress that people supporting that banner mean different things by it. My Black friends were explaining from early on that the phrase was to draw attention to and try to remedy the especially bad treatment of Black people by the police. It is fair enough to challenge, with evidence, that the other races, in particular White people, are treated just as badly by the police. But my Black friends were proceeding under the belief that Black people are especially mistreated by the police. They said publicly way back that they were not insinuating that other lives don't matter. (I'm pretty sure this movement could exist much the same if Marxism had never been invented; the Marxists and other extreme ideologues always try to piggyback and try to influence broader movements that rise to public attention, as you likely know.) To accuse people such as my Black friends of having insinuated that not all lives matter has been an insult (and has served as a cover for White racists hiding behind support for the police in general.)

The response of Mr. Pense parallels the argument over having a Civil Rights law (1964). It could be asserted that the civil rights of all matter. The Act arose, as you know, from a situation in which Black people were (long-time) treated awfully, especially Black people. Mr. Pense may not agree that there is specially bad police treatment of Black people on average. But any politician pitching for the constituency that elected Trump/Pence would know they should insinuate there is no imbalance against Black by local law enforcement, should tar the movement (the persons constituting it) with its bizarre unsavory elements [rather like the Chicago TV news would cover the Gay Pride Parade by showing drag queens rather than the thousands of plainer folks marching on the occasion], and should insinuate that BLM folks deny that all lives matter.

That there are Black citizens killing other Black citizens to high levels is another issue, simply not the purpose for which BLM emerged. To bring private killings under its umbrella would be a repurposing and a distraction and downgrading of the narrower cause to which it is dedicated.

Edited by Boydstun

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Stephen, thanks for your perspective.

21 hours ago, Boydstun said:

Concerning your research and remarks on Black Lives Matter, I should like to stress that people supporting that banner mean different things by it.

It seems I didn’t do so to your satisfaction, but I did make a distinction between what ‘black lives matters’ means to various individuals and what it means to the organization and movement BLM.

I thought about but didn’t include in my blog post the question, Does ‘black lives matter’ mean all black lives or some black lives? The question is very relevant to your following comment.

21 hours ago, Boydstun said:

That there are Black citizens killing other Black citizens to high levels is another issue, simply not the purpose for which BLM emerged. To bring private killings under its umbrella would be a repurposing and a distraction and downgrading of the narrower cause to which it is dedicated.

In my opinion, BLM saying that these other victims also matter would be an upgrade. I would respect BLM much more if it downgraded its advocacy of Marxism and condoning violence, but I don’t expect that will happen. If those other black victims killed by other blacks who aren't police officers are excluded, that at least suggests that ‘black lives matter’ really means ‘some black lives matter.’ That makes me wonder if BLM’s ‘black lives matter’ is more an advertising slogan for a package deal than a statement of principle.  

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