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Why Peaceful Protests Matter

#Protests, #SocialMovements have shown throughout history that they are effective, not because they are a Right, but because they are groups of activists, people, and supporters that are united by a common purpose. The purpose to demand, and ultimately create transformational change in our communities. Our ancestors have shown us how, from the #CivilRights Movement, to the #WomensSuffrage Movement, they all revolve around those who feel powerless and disenfranchised, coming together against those who want to maintain power and control. Protests are a right in the United States, and we must never forget that fact.

In all historical movements, protests have proven essential and play an important role, they have shown us the ability for everyday people to make a difference by voicing their disapproval of an #injustice or actions by a given government, corporation or group. This kind of #activism is pivotal for starting the legwork for change. Let’s remember why the current protests for #BlackLivesMatter began, we saw a black man murdered by a police officer with a racist past on video footage . The death of #GeorgeFloyd motivated people of all backgrounds to gather and protest the actions they saw with their own eyes, and convinced lawmakers and the rest of the world to take notice of the #SystemicRacism in our country.

Even though #ColinKaepernick began sitting down and later kneeling during the national anthem in protest of police brutality against black men and women back on Aug. 27, 2016, it has taken exactly 4 years, the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmad Arbery and countless others, before the Black Lives Matter #BLM movement began drawing major headlines. Although Kaepernick’s protests were crucial and began the conversation to have transformational change, it was the beginning of what many are finally coming to realize what he was trying to peacefully bring attention to.

What CHANGE is the Black Lives Matter movement seeking?

To be clear, it is not to vandalize, riot and destroy as some are trying to declare. The goal of #BLM is not trying to suggest that Black lives are more important than other lives, it is to demand that Black lives are treated the same as all other lives.

BLM's focus is to draw attention to, and battle the issues concerning racial injustice, police brutality, criminal justice reform, Black immigration, economic injustice, LGBTQIA+ and all human rights. It includes environmental injustice, access to healthcare, access to quality education, voting rights, and voting suppression of not only people of color but everyone who is in under-served communities across the nation.

The work of Black Lives Matter movement aims to inspire and motivate people with their mission to eliminate white supremacy, and build community power to intercede in the violence on Black communities by local police forces and now white vigilantes.

The movement is not just a slogan, it is a clear vision of the change we want to see, and doesn’t mean we want violence and or riots in our own communities. Black Lives Matter is not trying to impose that vision, we want to share it, but above all, be clear where the movement stands, and we come in peace.

Black Lives Matter seeks Allies

BLM wants and needs supporters and allies, it is not a movement that seeks to be against anyone, but instead be inclusive to those that share and understand the injustice we seek to change. Allies that see or are beginning to understand the issues that systematically and disproportionately impact Black and under-served communities across our nation.

The BLM movement is not trying to overpower law and order; the demand is to evaluate the function and systemic racism in the police. BLM seeks to mobilize active allies, core supporters, and passive ones. The goal is to share knowledge and bring neutral groups over to the cause.

It is great to see all sport leaders and artists joining the cause, it’s never too late, and there are never enough supporters and allies. Although activists have been protesting for some time, it is nice to have those with a platform to help shine a light to the cause, and take action by demanding change.

The Importance of Peaceful Protests

With the recent incident of Jacob Blake, a black man who was shot 7 times in the back, was not a threat to officers, and in contrast, a white man, who shot 3 people with a rifle, killing 2 of them, was brought into custody without harm, I understand the anger, but we must not regress the cause with violence. Be vigilant of those who will agitate the cause and make sure we are on the right side of those agitators.

While we have every right to protest, as written in the 1st amendment, let's do so peacefully. Let's not give the forces already against us, any ammunition to portray the protests as anything else than citizens peacefully assembling and petitioning the government for a redress of grievances.

I'll reiterate, #PeacefulProtests are a right in these United States, and we must never forget that fact. We must also never let any boogaloo 'bois', vigilantes, the incumbent and his minions change the narrative by agitating a peaceful movement.

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