Black Lives Matter is reshaping the narrative on racism in America by “rebuilding the Black liberation movement."  Their activism centers on ending state-sanctioned violence that has taken many Black lives, and their work directly and indirectly addresses barriers to political power. In their words, Black Lives Matter is “broadening the conversation around state violence to include all of the ways in which Black people are intentionally left powerless at the hands of the state.”


Inspiring Many - And Inspiring Backlash

Black Lives Matter has faced scrutiny from the onset.

From “All Lives Matter”, to questioning of their strategy and tactics to co-opting taking someone else’s experience or history and making it your own; appropriating; in this case, it means remembering selective components of Martin Luther King, Jr’s beliefs and actions, and using his words - especially about nonviolence - to police what Black folks say and do the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in attempts to discredit their work, the backlash has been pronounced.

The negative reactions expose prejudices that many in the United States would rather deny or ignore.

Their impact can be measured by the spotlight they have successfully placed on the issues they are addressing, including their ability to impact the dialogue taking place in the 2016 Presidential campaigns.  

I must confess that over the last few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Councilor or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to “order” than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: “I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action”; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man's freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a “more convenient season.” Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection.
Excerpt from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail”

DeRay Mckesson Helps Stephen Address His Privilege

Watch prominent Black Lives Matter activist DeRay McKesson help Stephen Colbert understand and address his white privilege.