Soong-Chan Rah Says Black Lives Matter Because of What Experienced

SoongChan
Soong-Chan Rah
Nov. 28, 2015

In the midst of an awakening to racial realities in our nation, a cry to not derail the prophetic call of ‪#‎blacklivesmatter with all lives matter.

It was not ALL lives that were ripped from their homes in Africa.
It was not ALL lives that were separated from families and marched to the West African coast.
It was not ALL lives put into the dank, dark tombs of the slave castles.
It was not ALL lives that were offered as a tithe to the church and accepted by the church.
It was not ALL lives crammed into the European slave ships.
It was not ALL lives laid side by side like cargo in the hull of the ship.
It was not ALL lives that were force fed because they staged hunger strikes.
It was not ALL lives that were casually thrown overboard to be devoured by sharks following the slave ships.
It was not ALL lives that were brought to the New World as slave labor.
It was not ALL lives stripped naked and put on the auction block.
It was not ALL lives for whom the slave auction bell rang, often in rhythm to the church bell.
It was not ALL lives that were bought and sold by God-fearing white American Christians.
It was not ALL lives that were whipped and beaten on the plantations.
It was not ALL lives that were systematically and repeatedly raped by white slave owners.
It was not ALL lives who were daily assaulted in their very identity as those made in the image of God.
It was not ALL lives who were repeatedly told they were less than human.
It was not ALL lives who were diminished by the 3/5 compromise, the Missouri compromise, and the Dred Scott decision.
It was not ALL lives whose communities were wiped out because they sought to build a life for themselves after emancipation.
It was not ALL lives that were told “separate but equal” with equal never being equal.
It was not ALL lives but black lives that hung like strange fruit from Southern trees.
It was not ALL lives, it was Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Roberson, and Carol Denise McNair, four little black lives who were blown up when they bombed a church.
It was not ALL lives that were beset by attack dogs and by fire hoses.
It was not ALL lives but the black lives of Emmitt Till, Medgar Evers, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Malcolm X who were systematically assassinated.
It was not ALL lives that have been victims of police violence, but it was the black life of Oscar Grant.
It was not ALL lives, it was the black life of Trayvon Martin.
It was not ALL lives, it was the black life of Michael Brown.
It was not ALL lives, it was the black life of John Crawford, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, Freddie Gray, Sandra Bland.
It was not ALL lives, it was the black life of Clementa Pinckney, Sharonda Singleton, Tywanza Sanders, Ethel Lance, Susie Jackson, Cynthia Hurd, Myra Thompson, Daniel Simmons, Sr., DePayne Middleton Doctor.
It was not ALL lives, it was the black life of Rekia Boyd.
It was not ALL lives, it was the black life of Laquan McDonald.
It is not ALL lives that are targeted for mass incarceration.
It is not ALL lives that the prison industrial complex exploits.

These historical events did not involve the destruction and death of ALL lives, they were black lives that have been systematically targeted and abused by American society.

So next time, white evangelical leaders, you feel the urge to mouth off that “ALL Lives Matter” — CLOSE your mouth and OPEN your eyes, ears, and minds to get yourself some knowledge.

                                                                                                            Soong-Chan Rah, November 28. 2015

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