Fatima hassan
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Black Lives Matter

Black Lives

#BlackLivesMatter

Do you think people of color and “white” people have the same rights and opportunities? Do you think systematic racism exists today? You might be thinking it doesn’t exist anymore and everyone is equal and some might even believe it’s not that big of a deal. They have to have their priorities straight to be accepted by society. It’s hard for blacks to feel elevated in this country because it’s mainly run by white folks. Society's perception of black folks is always negative and they are often misunderstood. Law enforcement definitely doesn’t have a problem putting a black nigga behind bars and will always start a problem when there isn’t one there. Racism is still a thing and black folks have to try twice as hard to be accepted by society, be cautious of the laws and pray their lives aren’t next.

Society paints this image of black people for the world to see and always portrays them as the bad guys. They are always seen as threats rather than human beings and for that, they get treated like dirt. Especially in the media where they are misrepresented and always painted out to be the bad guys. An article titled “When the Media Misrepresents Black Men, The Effects Are Felt In Real Life,” author Leigh Donaldson, talks about what it’s like to not be accepted in today's society. She mentions, “We have often turned away for jobs because we are not the 'right fit'”, and how that affects black people's mentality. Often, they will take a look at the color of your skin and make their decision based off of that and not even consider you (Donaldson, The Guardian).

They always have to follow the “rules” in place all the time because if they don’t they are treated very poorly for their actions. The police will always stop a black person driving down the highway for no apparent reason. There was this one incident that happened in Ferguson, Missouri involving a black teen and an officer. The teen was hanging out by a convenience store minding his own business and officer Darren Wilson shot him because he thought he was armed. The teen was unarmed and wasn’t doing anything wrong and didn’t even resist when officers came. He was young and still had life to experience but that was all taken away from him. In the article “ Chicago’s Former Police Superintendent Blames Black Lives Matter for High Murder Rate”, author Gretel Kauffman talks about how the movement is being blamed for increased murder rates. She mentions how “the murder rates increased by 58 percent from 2015 to 2016” and how white supremacists blame the supporters of the #BlackLivesMatter movement as being the problem. They are not the problem because they are the ones who are being victimized and always have to fear for their lives (Kauffman, The Christian Science Monitor).

The lives of young black men are taken every day by ignorant people who always see them as a threat. Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, Mike Brown, Sandra Bland, Terence Crutcher, those are some of the lives that have been taken. These people did nothing wrong and were following the “rules” and still had to pay the price with their lives. This one story gets to me, it’s about Philando Castile, who was shot by police during a traffic stop while reaching for his wallet, his wallet, not a weapon. His fiance and child were in the car and they witnessed him being shot while being unarmed. With a child in the car that is very traumatizing. A child seeing his own father being shot and wondering if he's going to come back. People with authority or higher power always feel like they can do anything and still get away with it. For them, it’s always in self-defense but in reality, they can’t just justify the reason for gunning down innocent human beings.

Something definitely needs to happen and for change to happen there needs to be a stop to the murders. Law enforcement has to pay for their actions and not get away with it that easily. These are innocent, young black men and women who have a whole future ahead of them and that is easily taken away just like that. They live in fear every day and get nervous whenever a cop stops them because they don’t know if they are about to die or not. It feels like there is a war going on between my people and society and all we can do is stay strong and move forward. There is definitely a disconnect between black folks and society and we need to come together as one. When is this racism going to end and when are we finally going to be accepted by society and seen as human beings?

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Black Lives Matter
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