In Atlanta, Georgia, people carry signs saying “Say Her Name” as they walk down the street during the George Floyd protest. In black-and-white, a young man, wearing a Black Lives Matter mask, raises her arm in support. On the news, cars and buildings in the city burn while the ticker on the bottom of the screen says: “America braces for the sixth night of massive protests.”
Back in black-and-white, Lil Baby stands next to Councilman Antonio Brown and raises his arm as Brown speaks. In color, Brown leads the protest as he chants through his bullhorn. Back in black-and-white, Lil Baby rides his bicycle. Switching to color, a group of young women of all ages, raise their arms. A 10-year-old boy carries a sign: “Black Lives Matter. No Peace until Racism Cease! Dark Skin Is “Not A Crime.” A twentysomething young woman holds up her sign: “I’m too afraid to have kids because you keep killing my brothers and sisters.”
An ambulance’s sirens wail while it tries to park in the crowded road. A second young woman, standing with her friend, holds a sign: “Peace in the streets. Defund the police.” People topple over a police car. Back in black-and-white, a twentysomething carries a sign, stating “End Hate.” Back in color, a group of police officers talk in the center of the road. An 8-year-old boy hugs a female police officer. Explosions occur at night near the police cars. A Black man raises his arms while the police confront him. A police car burns. Lil Baby and the group raise their arms.
George Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man, was killed by white police officer, Derek Chauvin, who placed his knee on neck for almost 8 minutes in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In 2014, Michael Brown, a Black young man, was killed by white police officers. Also in 2014, Eric Garner, a Black young man died by a chokehold by a white police officer. Breonna Taylor was shot by white police in her own home on March 13, 2020, as reported by Buzzfeed News. Elijah McClain died last year by police officers, who also was put in a chokehold. According to Refinery29, the police officers had their bodycams off for 15 minutes. McClain was walking.
All Lives Matter is a loaded term. It’s dismissive and assumes people, regardless of race, are treated fairly and humanely. It’s understandable to see it as meaning equality. However, given the context of its use, it’s reactionary, at worst or naive, at best. Black Lives Matter includes equality. However, as a term and a movement, it’s there to draw attention to racism within the law enforcement and to bring about change.
Defund the Police means people want reform and according to the Black Lives Matters websites, accountability. The police in the United States receive free military equipment. According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the “Tarrant County law enforcement agencies have received more than $4.3 million in military surplus equipment through a federal Department of Defense program over the last 20 years, according to federal records.” It militarizes the police force, turning them into their own army. In order to protect and serve, they do not need tanks.
Black Lives Matter. Say Their Names.
Director: Keemotion Year: 2020