Reverend Smith says that when he says all lives matter, he isn't taking away from the efforts of groups like 'Black Lives Matter.' But he believes everyone in a community is needed to help the movement's efforts. Some chose racist-tinged ridicule. "I find these truths to be self evident that black lives matter".
At a similar protest in Dallas on Thursday, a sniper shot and killed five police officers and injured seven officers and two civilians.
Louisiana State Rep. C. Denise Marcelle, a black former city council member who closely tracks police issues and is now a candidate in the Baton Rouge mayor's race, described "problems from as far back as I can remember" and high levels of distrust in the black community for the police. Watch out Obama. Watch out black lives matter punks. Some hailed the videos as proof that the treatment of blacks by police no longer can be ignored, while others saw the deaths as numbingly normal. Black Lives Matter supporters, in other words, aren't the ones arguing, reductively, that Dallas is intractably divided between two warring teams, the "black" and the "blue".
"This event is an opportunity to peacefully serve notice that we will not stand for a system that represents an ever-present threat to people of color and unnecessarily jeopardizes the lives of law enforcement officers", said Ryan Kiesel, executive director of the ACLU of Oklahoma. "White people don't have to worry whether their child will be at the receiving end of a cop's baton or handgun". Police exchanged gunfire with Johnson, and there were attempts to negotiate, but they were not successful, according to Chief Brown.
There is now a terribly disturbing video from the Minnesota shooting, as a black female passenger sits in a vehicle next to her dying boyfriend, just shot by the police after being pulled over for a broken tail light. The officers involved were placed on leave and investigations continue. The presence of video documentation of the incidents calls attention to strife that had previously existed only in agonizing private memories. "I can't even begin to imagine how it feels to be African-American in this country". They argue that most whites have been too slow to speak out when injustices occur and that, once they do, such expressions rarely equate to meaningful change. They were demonstrating against the killing of Philando Castile, a school nutrition services supervisor.
White anxieties about an anti-white "race war" in America are an act of extreme psychological projection.
"A lot of times we don't see eye to eye on a lot of things, but, however, it never should come to a point where as a life is taken".
Matthew Shaw, a black law and public policy analyst at the American Bar Foundation, said too many white Americans lack empathy with blacks, and need to find ways to develop that. "Work on your friends, your family, people in your neighborhood".
"Violence is the worst response", he said.
Marchers chanted, "black lives matter", "no justice, no peace" and "hands up" as they protested throughout the streets.
Dara Silverman is the national coordinator of Showing Up for Racial Justice, a network launched a year and a half ago. Find a way to give to local organizations that fight racial discrimination.
"We don't want to leave it to chance", Kirkwood said. "I don't think it would have". It's time to put our money where our mouth is. Sterling and Castile's deaths reminded America that, almost two years after Ferguson, little seems to have changed.
There were harsh comments as well.
A black Army veteran upset about fatal police shootings of black men and bent on exterminating white police officers killed five lawmen in a sniper attack that layered new anxiety onto a nation already divided about guns...
But the campaign between two candidates who plumb historic depths in personal approval ratings promises to leave the next president with a disunited and disgruntled nation.
But until we can learn to listen to each other and not just to talk to each other (or past each other) I fear the divide will only grow deeper. I utterly, completely reject their racism.