#BLM – “I can’t breathe”
There is a very good and clear statement which leaders of Churches and Charities in Reading put together, as a response to all the media coverage around the death of George Floyd, which I would personally generally endorse, except for the use of the phrase “brutal killing”. It can be seen here, but please read on below.
It ought to be the case that the statement and sentiment “Black Lives Matter” should go without saying, but some people feel that unless one actually states it repeatedly like some sort of mantra, one is being “racist”. It should also go without saying that as Christians we believe that we are all descendants of Adam and Eve and therefore that race is pretty much a human construct underpinned by the idea of evolution, not creation. It seems profoundly stupid to suggest that skin colour alone makes any one human superior to another.
The tragedy of George Floyd’s death became the trigger to many more tragedies and horrendous rioting, criminal damage, with massive repercussions and potentially a revolution in the States. Pure conjecture spread like wildfire on social media. The truth didn’t matter. The myth formed within hours and became “fact” overnight. Such is the modern world.
One of the most unfortunate effects has been a polarisation of views whereby one only has to say, or not say, a particular phrase and one is condemned as something unpleasant. The U.K. has escaped the excesses of the fallout, but we must sympathise with parts of America which have been badly effected. We should also be saddened by how the actions of certain individual police officers in America have resulted in the felt need to state that Blue Lives Matter.
Have you watched what actually happened?
Months on from the original event, bodycam footage was released which should have been seen immediately after the event. I recommend that you at least listen to the first 10 minutes. Here is a man clearly under the influence of drugs, behaving erratically and resisting arrest. 30 minutes in we get the second officer‘s bodycam footage, and therefore the same events from a different angle.
My heart goes out to George Floyd who has got himself into this mess by passing off a forged bill (which he admits to btw), one of many that he had on him. My heart of course also goes out to his grieving relatives.
But I also feel so terribly sorry for the police officers simply trying to do their job! This situation escalated steadily and progressively and lessons seriously need to be learned in training around restraint. But please, please watch. Don’t just condemn me out of hand because of what you have been told. In particular, when did he start saying “I can’t breathe“? Listen to what people around are saying to Floyd and the police! Listen to the words of the police officers and put yourself in their shoes.
SIMPLY TRAGIC AND AVOIDABLE – I’m not being insensitive, but watch and then tell me again that this was anything more than a legitimate arrest of a criminal that went horribly wrong. What would you have done?
When all is said and done ongoing there are two things which have resulted.
One is that certain political factions have used events to push their agenda, in some cases using violence with no concern for the breakdown of law and order.
The other is the growth in influence of the political organisation “BLM“.
It is overtly anti-Christian* and christian values. They make themselves impossible to support if one wishes to remain true to one’s own beliefs around the sanctity of life, family, marriage and other issues.
*It has more recently (September 2020) come to light that the leaders of the movement are actively into a traditional African religion which includes ancestor worship and calling on the spirits of the dead. This is heavy stuff and you may in any case think that voodoo, contacting spirits and the like is nonsense. However they openly say that BLM is a spiritual movement, so it is no wonder that their world view is so at odds with the conservative “christian” American one aside from the racial inequalities element.