Opinion

Salisbury’s take

PHOTO/Ryan Lohman

PHOTO/Ryan Lohman

By: STEPHEN SALISBURY
SGA President

Do Black lives really matter in this country?

If so, then why does it make so many people uncomfortable when we make that statement?

Every day I turn on the TV and another unarmed Black man has been killed by a police officer.

I must admit, I watched the recent video online of the wife of Keith Scott, one of the latest victims from Charlotte, N.C., begging police not to shoot him, trying to make them understand that he suffered from a traumatic brain injury and that he did not have a gun.

Why don’t the police believe her? What is it about this man that makes them not want to listen to her plead for his life?

Police claim he had a gun, but even if that were true, there is no video evidence showing that he was threatening the police. We see a similar instance were four or five officers swarm up to Terence Crutcher’s vehicle in Tulsa. In that video, Crutcher has his hands in the air and is obviously impaired.

In addition to shooting him with a Taser, police fireed several shots at point plank range, killing him dead on the street. In this country a criminal is supposedly innocent until proven guilty, unless he’s a large Black man, and then he is a threat until proven otherwise and if there is any doubt, shoot first and make excuses later.

If that doesn’t cause you any sorrow, then be honest with yourself and admit that those Black lives really don’t matter to you. And please, for the love of God, stop claiming with righteous superiority that “all lives matter” when we all know that that is not true.

If that were true we wouldn’t need a police force. If all lives matter, then why do we have a military? If all lives matter, then why are we debating the immigration issue and rallying behind a man that wants to build a wall to keep “those people” out?

If all lives matter, why wouldn’t we want Syrian refugees moving in next door to us? If all lives matter, why does one gender make 77 cents for every dollar that another gender makes? If all lives matter, why is universal health care not a reality in our country?

If all lives matter, why does one percent of the population contain as much wealth as the other 99 percent combined? If all lives matter, why do we need laws to keep people who identify with a gender other than the one with which they were born out of the bathroom that they feel most comfortable using?

Admit it people, you’re lying when you say all lives matter, but it makes you feel good because you want to show Black people that you claim to care more about all people then they do!

If the logical argument is too much for you, then let’s consider the transitive property of equality from Mathematics. I’m in Calculus II this semester and if it wasn’t for this reality, I couldn’t get most of my integrations to work.

This property suggests that if A=B and B=C, then naturally A=C. Given this reality, let’s solve the whole conflict right now between the idea of Black lives matter versus all lives matter. If (A) All Lives Matter means (=) that (B) all lives actually do matter, and if (B) all lives actually do matter means (=) that (C) Black lives, which are actually lives, also matter, then All Lives Matter (A) should mean (=) that (C) Black Lives Matter. So, when someone claims that Black lives matter, why do you need to counter with all lives matter, unless you have a problem with the part of the equation that states that all lives actually do matter?

I am proud to say that I have many Black friends. I also have many gay friends, women friends, Latino friends, Hispanic friends, queer friends, atheist friends, Muslim friends, non-American friends, and friends who are affected by a disability.

Do I know people who are transgender? Yes. Do I have any friends who are? Honestly, I don’t know. But, what I do know is that as a white, Christian, heterosexual, male, I occupy probably the single most privileged status that has ever existed in the world. And we haven’t even addressed the disparities in income. What I can also say is that although I may have friends who are a part of all of these communities, I can’t possibly know what it is like to live in a society that questions the value of my life. They do! Do all my friends’ lives matter to me? Yes. Do Black Lives Matter? Yes! What’s the problem?

Let us know what you think:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s