The Growth of Black Lives Matter

After a nearly all-white jury freed George Zimmerman of all charges in relation to the killing of an unarmed black teen, three women decided to share their negative feelings of sadness, fear, and disgust for society over social media. The comments surrounded the idea of valuing black people and through that, the hashtag, #blacklivesmatter, appeared. In her article, “How Black Lives Matter moved from a hashtag to a real political force,” Janell Ross discusses how the hashtag went viral as countless people continued to post about the current racist political atmosphere in the United States. Day by day, this hashtag was no longer just simply words; it was referred to as the 21st century’s first civil rights movement by the New York Times.

Black Lives Matter has become a social movement with its own political aims, demands, and a group of individuals motivated to influence the current political environment. This slogan did not only fit well online, but also was brought to the streets in multiple cities in the form of protests against ongoing injustice against unarmed black individuals by the police. This movement has become an outlet for many people in different ways. While some see it simply as a way to combat the unjust police incidences that have occurred, others see it as a way to release their long-held sadness and anger about the current political, social, and economic situation.

Although the hashtag turned into a large movement, a few consequences have come along. Because there are may internal groups within the movement, it is difficult to determine clear leadership. Additionally, there have been arguments on how to make decisions moving forward. Overall, this illustrates that even though the movement has proven to be a success externally thus far, it comes with a few divides and conflicts internally.

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