Black Lives Matter

Preface: Some of you may feel that this article seem a bit out of place given what I usually write about. But I think this is an issue that affects everybody at one point of another. It goes beyond just being African American or Caucasian, it’s about being human. And I care for our human race, which is why I felt compelled to share my thoughts on this subject. Hopefully, you’ll find it interesting and thought stimulating.

There has been a lot of attention given to specific violence acts committed by the police and those that retaliate within the last 2 weeks. Unfortunately, America is no stranger to racism and hate crimes, and many consider the recent incidents to fit into that exact category.

It appears that people are simply reacting to the situation, allowing their anger, rage and personal sense of justice to blind their love and consideration for their fellow man.

It’s starting to become where everyone starts to look out only for themselves and no one else. It’s not a situation that any of us would like to be in, but it’s one that’s starting to take root.

Am organization called Black Lives Matter was formed after the death of Trayvon Martin, a 17 year old teenager whose killer was acquitted on the charge of murder.

Since then, Black Lives Matter (BLM) has organized protests, talks, and other events to bring awareness to the inequality shown for the black community in general. For Trayvon Martin, he was portrayed as a hoodlum with ill intentions and a bad rep. Although some of the facts may be true regarding Martin’s background, they were used to justify his killing, which has little, if any bearing at all on the act of killing itself.

Since then, there have been many more incidents where members of the black community were killed and the killers were either not held responsible, or the repercussions did not fit the crime. Many of these were committed by police officers. This has sparked protests against the police force in general and terrible acts of “revenge” against law enforcement ensued.

Due to the most recent events, it seems that this situation has come to a head.

Let’s see what the recent incidents were and the public’s response.

Recent Incidents


Incident 1

On July 5, 2016, a 37 year old man was outside in the parking lot in front of a convenience store in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. This man’s name is Alton Sterling. The police was called on him by an anonymous caller who claim Sterling had a gun and was threatening him. Police arrived and video footage showed that Sterling was first tasered by the officers, then tackled to the ground.

While trying to gain control of the Sterling, who is clearly shown lying on the ground, one of the officers yelled out that Sterling was going for his gun. Moments later, with both officers on top of Sterling, multiple gunshots were heard. Sterling was seen laying on the ground with a gunshot wound to the chest.

Alton Sterling suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the chest and back and his death was originally ruled a homicide by the coroner.

Less than 24 hours later, more than 100 protestors gathered on the streets, set of fireworks and blocked street intersections to express their outrage at this incident.

Incident 2

On July 6, 2016, a day after the tragic death of Alton Sterling, a 32 year old man named Philando Castile and his girlfriend were driving in Falcon Heights, Minnesota with their 4 year old daughter in the backseat.

They were stopped for a broken taillight and Castile was asked for his registration and license. He told the officer that he has a license to carry a firearm and that he has a firearm in the car. According to Castile’s girlfriend, the office told Castile to not move. Castile was in the process of getting his license and registration and went to put his hands back up when told by the officer to not move. That was when the officer fired multiple shots into the side of Castile.

No first aid was given to Castile until shortly before the paramedics arrived. Castile’s girlfriend recorded the aftermath of the shooting on video, capturing the officer still pointing his gun at the dying Castile. She was later handcuffed but then released.

Just like the case of Alton Sterling, Castile’s death was ruled a homicide by the coroner.

More than 200 people gathered at the scene in about 3 hours after the incident to protest what has happened.

Incident 3

In response to the 2 incidents mentioned above, a protest rally was held on July 7, 2016 in Dallas, Texas. This event was organized by Black Lives Matter to protest against the police killings of those 2 men in the 2 preceding days. It was a peaceful protest and police officers were present to provide a safe environment for the protestors.

But the peace did not last long on this day.

Micah Xavier Johnson, a an Army Reserve Afghan War Veteran, opened fire on the crowd of protestors at the end of the event, hitting 12 officers and 2 civilians, killing 5 of the officers.

Further investigation found that Johnson had been planning this attack before the incidents from the previous 2 days. But the protest and the recent deaths caused by police officers most likely gave Johnson the push and opportunity to commit this horrendous crime.

The was the deadliest day for law enforcement in the U.S. since the 9/11 attacks.

Public Views


There has been a lot of different takes on the recent incidents and viewpoints are flying in every direction. Millions of people have taken to social media to express their rage. Celebrities, politicians, and everyone in between had their view on what the root cause of the problem is and how to solve it.

Attention has been turned to police brutality and the abuse of authority by a few officers. Racial profiling has been put to the forefront by Black Lives Matter, and for good reasons. The backgrounds of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling were being used by some in attempts to soften or even justify their killings.

It seems that focus is being shifted in every different direction.

In light of these recent incidents and all those other ones in the past few years, many protests and rallies had been held to show dissatisfaction with the current legal system and outcry over the many tragic deaths by those that we trust to serve and protect us.

That begs the questions however, are these protests doing us any good?

Are Protests Any Good?

The freedom of expression and assembly are plainly stated in the United States Constitution. There aren’t a whole lot better ways to get your message out to the world than to gather together as a people and be out there physically to show what your stand for.

It’s easy to see why protest is a good idea.

But protests also have a stigma attached to it. Protests have came a long way since the 1992 LA riots when the police officers who had severely beaten Rodney King were acquitted on trial. But just last year, the Baltimore protests for the death of Freddie Gray turned violent on several occasions.

I’m not saying that protests should not be held. I think it’s the right of every American citizen to express what they believe in and if going in masses in the streets is their choice, so be it as long as NO crimes are being committed.

I think the protesters in Louisiana, Minnesota, and Texas were all peaceful in their methods. Current investigation still shows that the gunman in Texas was acting alone.

In these cases, protesting can be even more difficult to manage peacefully because the subject of the protest is police brutality on members of the black community. And these protests are usually watched over by police officers to not only ensure the safety of everyone involved, but to also alert reinforcements if the protest gets out of hand.

Opinions Everywhere

We had mentioned that everyone has there own viewpoints on these incidents, and there’s no shortage of opinions regarding the way these incidents should be handled. But we all need to keep one fundamental truth in mind.

All ideas are ultimately opinions that were formed by someone.

With matter like these that affects such a large number of people, there’s no quick fix. There’s no magic pill or a secret formula that can miraculous fix it all.

“Eliminate the police force!”, “Take away the guns!”, “No, lax the gun laws so we can protect ourselves!”. All these are extreme opinions being hurled by politicians and their die-hard followers. I am not one to say if they are right or wrong, because of one simple fact.

I myself do not have the answer.

I’m sure many of us have heard of the reasoning from different sides on how tighter gun control will solve this issue, or limiting the power of law enforcement officers will solve that problem. But in reality, not everyone will all agree on a single proposed solution to a problem, nevermind all those other ones that we’re all constantly trying to solve.

Learn To Disagree

Because there are so many opinions about these things, we must all learn to live with them. This is as simple as agreeing to disagree on any topic.

We should keep in mind that the aim is not to please everyone. But if everyone’s aim is to stop the violence, then the results bought about from the right solution should please everyone.

Whatever their reason is for their belief, we shouldn’t get caught up that it’s not in agreement with ours. And this is almost all I see whenever I open up my Facebook page or Twitter feed.

People are arguing back and forth on why certain things don’t work, or this needs to be implemented, or that needs to be taken away. I caught myself getting caught up in a conversation the other day about the very topic of Black Lives Matter.

It wasn’t hostile in any way but I simply expressed my opinion on the matter and so did the others in the group conversation. But I felt the need to show how the other person is “wrong” in his way of thinking, instead of trying to understand where he’s coming from and his reasons for believing in what he does.

As soon as I understood that, I was able to perceive his view on the matter. And I actually agreed with him on a certain level.

Although we must learn to live with disagreements, there is one thing we ALL need to agree on.

Stop The Violence


As said before, there is no easy solution to this whatsoever. But the easiest part of whatever the solution is is very simple.

Stop the violence.

Well, that’s what we’re trying to do! What do you think we’re thinking up of different solutions for?

Yes, this is much easier said that done. And it really is the essence of what everyone is aiming for, it’s just the methods are all different.

I said those 3 words for a reason. We all know that when violence stops, these problems would literally be non-existence.

But the world doesn’t think about those 3 words enough.

Not enough to stop fighting with each other on how to achieve it. Not enough to stop taking advantage of tragedies like these to push our own political agendas. Not enough to make peace with those around us and humbly come up with a solution together.

At the end of the day, it goes back to the goal that we’re trying to achieve.

Once we let our emotions and personal opinions blind us of what the finish line is, then we’re no longer making progress. And once we stop making progress, we’re regressing as a human race.

NO Rights Ever Come Out Of Wrongs

What Micah Xavier Johnson did is a prime example of revenge fueled by blind rage that makes it infinitely harder for people to work together. The fact that this man aimed to kill white police officers intensified the existing racial tension in the nation.

Does it mean that people of different races don’t trust each other?

No, there are cases where incidents like these strengthens the bond between certain people of different ethnicity. But it definitely doesn’t help for the most part when in comes to imparting trust on each other.

Working Together Must Be The Foundation

This is not an article on my personal political views on gun control, the power of law enforcement, racial profiling and discrimination, etc. This is an article to stimulate thought and logic to hopefully come up with a solution to the problem.

Yes, I just said that right now, there is NO solution to this problem. Not one that works anyway.

And I’m not going to sit here and type away saying that I have it because I do not.

But there is definite hope in this case if we can all work together peacefully on this.

It’s apparent that this issue affect most if not all of us to some extent. If you live in America, you’re definitely living in it.

So let’s forget all the bickering and political views and shove those aside just this once, and work together to find a solution for this problem that should’ve never existed in the first place.

It’s not just black lives that matter, or police lives that matter, but ALL LIVES MATTER. I’m not a promoting or endorsing any group, but I’m simply stating the obvious. We need a solution to protect EVERYONE from these types of tragedies, not just one particular group.

-Wing

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I've just started getting serious about health and fitness around 2014. Since then I've learned the insider info on how to optimize athletic performance and healthy living through both nutrition and proper training. The most important thing I've discovered however, is the connection between the mindset of those that excel in athletics, and those that succeed in their life pursuits. I've spent the last couple years observing and drawing these connections and similarities, finally created a platform to share with you all what I've found, and how to apply them in your own life to get similar results.

12 thoughts on “Black Lives Matter Protests- The Need To Work Together

  1. Thank you for your well thought out post. I am a woman of color. I come from a heritage of slaves, freeman and entrepreneurs. I know what it is to build from scratch with my own two hands. I have built a family and a business. I say all this to say that, what I have done gives my life worth. The Grace in this is that I defined my worth. No one defined or defines it for me. My Life Matters.
    Because My Life Matters, I have been groomed to govern myself upon principles which were given to me by my ancestors. From these principles are traditions in civility I was taught at a very young age. I realize that it is from this perspective I have been looking at the world. Yet, I tolerate those that do not see the world as I do. It is this tolerance that allows me to live together with my fellow man without the expectation of having to live like my fellow man. Accepting that we MUST live together without living alike is the key.
    I was saying to colleagues today that the violence we see in OUR community is also happening in Caucasian communities. Yet, we are dying in more numbers and at faster rates then our Caucasian counterparts. So, it would appear that WE all face this issue on different levels. So, working together is one of the keys of OUR survival and being different is a side note.

    1. Dr Ondria,

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your experience! I appreciate your take on this as well. I have a lot of respect for those who are able to see matters objectively even if they may have certain reasons to hold a grudge of take sides.

      Thanks for visiting the site. Stick around for more upcoming articles!

      -Wing

  2. Very impassioned response on a very controversial topic. Seeing each of the major recent incidents really puts a everything in perspective on this topic. I feel that this is an issue that we’ve only scratched the surface of, and we will only really how bad it is more and more in the short term future. Luckily, I think that technology, particularly body cameras, will go a long way to reducing incidents like these and restoring faith in our police forces.

    1. James,

      I feel the same way. I just hope that everyone sees the need to find a solution to resolve this before it gets any worse. Sometimes people need a wake-up to actually realize how serious certain events are. But this is something that we don’t want any wake-up calls on. We need to address it now.

      I hope the body cameras will continue to be implemented. But I think the justice system itself needs some fixing. People feel that mentioning race is clinche and dismiss it as pulling the race card, but Brock Turner gets his swimming record and athletic accomplishments posted on TV while any non-white male accused of similar crimes are immediately called a rapist and any negative in their background put on blast. I see this as the big issue and hopefully it will be addressed soon.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      -Wing

  3. Wing,
    Being an African-American citizen as I am, I must give you tons of credit for tackling such a sensitive subject of racism, police violence against African-Americans, violence against police, protest and all else that is going on in this very trouble country we called the U.S.

    I once was the subject of insensitivity by a police officer back in Sept. 2003. Living at the time in an inner city and on my condo/high rise floor, in 8 out the 9 units that there was at least one male African-American in each of them.
    Earlier that afternoon and at work which could be proven by any number of 25+ individuals, (thus my having a rock-solid alibi) an incident took place between a white woman and an African-American male over a parking slot in my condo. The woman called the man the “N” word. He in turn threatened to do bodily harm to her.
    So, hours later that evening there was a knock on my door and opening it, there stood 2 policeman, both white.
    They wanted to know if I was aware of that incident, (described in detail for the first time by one of the officers). They were after the African-American male and could I prove I was not that person? I immediately gave them my location at work plus the home phone number of a co-worker who could have vouched for me as to my whereabouts at the time the confrontation between the two people took place.

    What really ticked me off was the fact that one officer, not satisfied with my proof of an alibi stated, “Well we’re looking for a black guy, and you fit the description obviously. You’re black”!! Excuse me can you say “racial profiling”, Wing? Supposedly illegal in this country? I was stunned and looking back I wish I had gotten the last name of this officer according to his badge. Again remember there were 8 units on my floor who had at least 1 African-American male in it.

    Just about then a person living on the same floor as me then, (another African-American male) approached the officers to tell him that without question I was not the person they were looking for. He had seen the entire incident and pointed to the officers where this person lived. I received no such apology from either officer – more like “boy are you lucky that someone helped you out”!

    Later talking it over with my cousin who at the time was a police officer working in a different town, he stated that the cops who came knocking on my door had done some incredibly sloppy police work. When the cops went around looking for the suspect, they SHOULD have had the white woman who hours earlier was part of the incident along with them to make the identification.

    I was ticked off for months afterwards. I quickly came to understand the notion of “driving while black”; a high proportion of people of color pulled over by cops on the highways just because of the color of their skin.

    In my case I was metaphorically “pulled over” while minding my own business inside my condo that evening. If I had gotten the name of this officer I would have demanded that action be taken against him by his superiors. But I was just so stunned by what took place and the racist words that came out of his mouth “you fit the profile, you’re black”! I guess to that sick, racist cop all black people looked alike to him.

    It also is appropriate that weeks later, after the right male had been found and eventually, I assume arrested but also kicked out of the building, this woman’s car a then new Toyota was mysteriously set on fire and completely totaled one night. I guess that the male had the final answer, or last laugh so to speak.

    So I completely understand the anger that many of my fellow African-Americans have as a result of poor relations with white officers. However their answer, causing riots and damaging their own neighborhoods is sheer ludicrous.

    I don’t have the answer although getting rid of guns in this country, (the heck with this right-to-bear arms doctrine) could eventually be a part of the answer. In what other civilized, democratic country can you walk around with concealed firearms? None that I am aware of.

    Ever since African-Americans, including part of my own ancestry were forced over to this country and told to work as slaves, systematic racism has existed in this country. Of course now racism has been extended against Hispanics/Latinos, Asians, Middle East citizens, Muslims, and on and on.

    Great article Wing. Thank you for addressing this very sensitive subject that is seen almost daily in this country.
    Jeff

    1. Jeff,

      Thank you so much for sharing your experience. From how well you can recall this, I’m sure it’s something you’ll never forget. I personally haven’t experienced racial profiling as blatant as you have, but I can imagine the same “inability to speak” feeling. It’s like you’re so appalled at the level of racism that you couldn’t even formulate a response.

      This is a very heartfelt topic and I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’m in no position to say what exact steps should be taken because I’m just one person. I know there are more people out there that are ready to come together to find a stop to the violence, regardless of skin color or ethnicity. I just hope that positive change takes place soon.

      Thanks again for sharing Jeff, your experience and thoughts are much appreciated.

      -Wing

  4. Very good article. The time for the world to come together is now more than ever. This post is very true in every aspect of it. No matter your race or religion we should all work together and solve problems peacefully and leave it at that. Keep sharing the positivity man.

  5. Hey Wing,

    This was a really impressive article to read especially due to the recent events that has been happening around us. Even though i live in Melbourne, Australia. Most incidents from the states we do here about and the thought of us living in 2016 stuff like this shouldn’t be occurring. Hope we as people work together and grow from this.

    Keep posting well informed articles, your doing an incredible job.

    All the best

    Vinnie

    1. Vinnie,

      Thank you. I agree that a solution needs to be put together with everyone in mind, and quickly. Since the writing of this article, there were several more incidents of officers being gunned down. It is really sad that a lot of people still believes that violence is the only answer to all of this.

      Thanks for reading!

      -Wing

  6. You ask if protests are good. I think they are, and those affected should be able to vent their anger in a positive way. Protests also bring to light the feelings of the people and possible bring about change. It’s too bad we still have so much hate and so much racism in a country where everybody is supposed to be free.

    1. Matt’s Mom,

      I too think that protests are good, in theoretical sense. The notion that we can express how we feel openly is part of the core principle the US was founded on, Freedom.

      I’m glad you’re able to see that it’s just the hate and racism that’s keeping everyone from accepting each other freely. There have been even more acts of violence against the police force since this last event. It’s more urgent now than ever to bring all this violence to a stop.

      -Wing

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