Just A Reminder That Black Lives Still Matter

Anna Schrader, Reporter/Photographer

After witnessing the deaths of both Breonna Taylor and George Floyd back in early 2020, the Black Lives Matter movement has made an incredible impact on our world as we know it. Not only did these protests show love and solidarity towards the families of police brutality victims, they also brought about charges to the officers involved in these killings. During this time, we witnessed unity and empathy throughout the world. People of all backgrounds, race, age, and gender came together to fight for a common cause. Social media was flooded with support towards the movement. We saw powerful people and companies use their voices to promote equality and to make a change. But in February of 2021, we don’t see half as much support on a day to day basis. Why is that? Did black lives stop mattering? 


For some non-people of color, the Black Lives Matter movement has been viewed as solely a “trend.” This my friends is just one of many problems having to do with white privilege in America today. They make a post on Instagram saying that black lives matter, yet make no change in their day to day life. One reason for this may be our “white guilt.” White guilt is the individual or collective guilt felt by some white people for harm resulting from racist treatment of ethnic minorities. By making their one post on Instagram, it relieves white people of this guilt that they feel. Many non-people of color feel required because of this guilt to express their beliefs on the matter, just so they don’t come across as biggoted to other people. Although they may have pure intentions, this is just adding to the problem. Wanting people to view you a certain way based off of social media versus people viewing you a certain way because of the actions you make in everyday life are very different. White guilt is just a product of our white privilege we experience everyday. Rather than supporting a group of people that are being oppressed, we see white people making it about them. They don’t want to be viewed a certain way from their peers, yet may not actually care enough about the cause to make a change. 


As a white person in 2021, I have an incredible mix of emotions. I do feel this white guilt brought onto me from my ancestors, but I do also know that I can use my white privilege for the better. When I see videos on social media from protests where minorities are being maced and shot with rubber bullets, it makes me feel sick to stomach because I know that it is because of people like me. This is where we must use our white privilege to benefit the situation. We have to take every single opportunity we are given to show we want to fix this problem in America. Your retweet isn’t going to stop an officer from shooting an unarmed black man. Us white people have the privilege to step in, and it is our duty to do so after creating this problem in the first place. 


The most important thing we can do during this time is to be selfless and to educate. We can still rally and march in protests. We can teach our children and friends about black oppression in America and how to stop it. Donate to charities, support black owned businesses. Say something the next time your friend makes a racist comment. Let’s support the minorities who are being hurt because of the color of their skin, and not make it about us white people.


This is just your reminder that black lives still matter.