Do #BlackLives really matter, or is it just a nice, catchy hashtag?

Mhhh… I keep being told that being white makes me a weak advocate for people of colour and that being a mostly straight woman makes my advocacy for gay rights hard to believe.

My answer to these haters is a quote from a facebook meme (thank you social media!): I don’t need to be a panda to advocate for the protection of the environment!

So, as it turns out, you can be white and mostly straight and still try and pursue a reality where people who were born without your tons of privilege can lead a happy life… (I’m still a woman, so I can still righteously claim my share of struggle..).

Now, about black lives, and how much they matter… or do they?  Because from what I’m reading it doesn’t look like they do that much…  For instance, how is it that that neither BBC nor CNN report as a headline that eight churches across the southern States of the US have been burnt in the past ten days?  Because, I mean… it’s kind of 0.8 a day… if that happened in the Middle East we would be screaming that Christians are being persecuted.  So why are the headlines of major international media reporting about entirely other stuff (which to be fair in the case of BBC is fairly interesting… the front page of CNN, right now, reports: 1. Supermodel enjoys her crazy car obsession (with picture), 2. Was Paris Hilton in on horrible prank? (with video) and 3. These amazing pictures are made with packing tape (also with video) as BREAKING NEWS).

CNN probably has to rethink what a breaking news is, but the point is that across the United States, that make a point of exporting democracy and being the land of dreams, there are class A and class B citizens.  And even if I may have a million comments on how more or less tactfully TV hosts and guests give anthropological explanations on how black people are statistically more likely to commit crimes (the comment that rises above them all is: WHAT THE FUCK? But everyone knows I’m not pragmatic and have always been crap at anthropology…) I’m surprised that nobody is taking a stand on this.

As an atheist I may not have a say in what happens in churches, but let’s just say I do… underreporting on the burning of “black churches” feels like blaming the victim for a rape.  Not Referring to Dylann Roof as a terrorist (although what he did was not different to what what was done at Charlie Hebdo or the Bard in Tunis) is a punch in the face of those millions of Americans (and non Americans) who want justice.

And justice passes also through semantics.

Eight churches have been burnt, the shadow of racism is more and more palpable in a country whose “leader of the free world” is an interracial man.  What are we gonna do about it? Because at this point the question is racial, not religious, and we do need to address it without hiding behind a distant enemy.


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