#BlackLivesMatter versus #AllLivesMatter and Gaslighting/Diverting

Submitted by Adrian on

This conversation started out as a discussion involving #BlackLivesMatter versus #AllLivesMatter.  Of course I have my own thoughts about this subject but that is not what this post is about. There was a comment that was voiced that has started getting under my skin a lot lately, and that is of people making “canned” comments whose sole purpose is to deflect from the real subject.  

There was talk about [unarmed] young Black men being killed by the police.  The next comment was:
“More young black men are killed by other young black men than police. By a very wide margin.”

This is a comeback I hear all the time but in actuality it is used to dismiss what the police are doing by saying (to me) that “Black lives don’t really matter because Black people  kill themselves in much bigger numbers than the police do so have no reason to complain about the police.  What they should be do is clean up their own act.”

Every time I hear this it is a slap to my (and all Black people’s) face.

Here is some of the interchange I am involved in after this statement was made.

Xxxxxxx Xxxxx Xxxxxx and more young white men are killed by white men than police. What is your point. The subject is police killing Black men. Please don't use the racist tactic of changing the subject rather than talk about the issue of Black men being killed by the police in numbers proportionally larger than any other group.

Adrian, I truly appreciate your concerns and I am equally disturbed by the actions of police forces across the country in their interactions with Black men. I can't explain their actions but can only theorize that it may be due to:

  1. The life experiences and upbringing of those officers, 
  2. Their police training, or lack thereof, 
  3. Previous interactions that those officers have had with Black youth. 

As far as policing is concerned those three things are a factor but I do not think they are the main factors in this.  Recently I read an article that put it all together for me (using my life experience as a factor).  One of my best friends, someone close enough to me that I asked him to be a reader at my wedding, used to hang out a lot, doing things together, and very involved in each other’s life. This went on until he became a Police Officer. 

Once that happened he changed, withdrawing from everyone that he socialized with, until he completely disappeared.  I used to think that it was changes in our lives (which was a part of it), but the article was authored by an ex-police officer, and he talked about the culture of the Policing and how it was the cause of his divorce because he left the profession because of the culture.  

It’s foundation fosters an "us" versus "them" dynamic.  That the "public" is the enemy (with Black people being the most dangerous (my thought)) and that the public don’t understand what that are doing.  And this culture is so strong it eventually “infects” those who enter Policing with the intention to make changes for the better (which we continually hear about but those individuals don’t succeed).  

I'm not trying to change the subject and take exception to the implication that I'm using a ‘racist tactic’. As a fellow Baha'i I also believe in the oneness of Mankind. My point is that in the greater scheme of things it's important to look at all causes of death among Black men. 

If you wish to discuss looking at “all causes of death among Black men” feel free to doso, but DO NOT try to dilute the discussion of the narrower discussion of Police killing Black men.  By doing so you are going off subject.

Am I not correct???

As an engineer we often use a technique called a Pareto analysis to determine where we're going to place our time and energy in problem resolution (reducing scrap rates for example). We want to first address those issues that are costing the most.

So please, use this technique, but apply it to the discussion and tell us what you come up with, because again the discussion us police killing Black men.
“If we apply the same technique in reducing the death rate among Black men then the majority of our time and energy and resources should be spent on reducing death by homicide, most of which is caused by other Black men; that was my original point and should be the topic of another discussion. “
Again, off topic.

A probable reason that there is a disproportionate rate of deaths caused by police within the Black community is that many Blacks live in inner-city communities with high crime rates. Police presence will always be higher in high crime areas so there is more contact between Black youth and police than with White youth. 

And maybe the attitude of the police contribute to the disproportionate rate of Black men killing each other because the Police show no regard for Black life so that teaches Black People their lives are not worth much.   So maybe the police need to change in order to change Black people (using your logic here).

I don't believe Black men are necessarily being targeted by police but there is more interaction between them and police than other demographic groups. Admittedly, the root causes of much of this crime and violence are societal and ultimately spiritual. With kind regards, Xxxx

And the Police are a tool of our society, and the Police does the bidding of our society (which is racially based).  And the “System” of Racism works as intended with keeping Black people down and under the control of the Dominant race which IS White.  The ROOT cause of the crime and violence in the Black Community is the practices of “gentile” white people who choose to not recognize the policies that divide and subjugate Black people.  Just because one is a Baha’i does not absolve them of making the effort to recognize the implicit biases we all have.