Image: Hoang ‘Leon’ Nguyen / The Republican

Why Racists Can’t Say “Black Lives Matter”

Ezinne Ukoha
4 min readJun 24, 2020

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Vice President Mike Pence obstinately refused to utter the words: Black Lives Matter,” during a bizarre exchange with a reporter for a local ABC station in Philadelphia.

The interview was recorded on Juneteenth, a day that serves as the symbolic and sobering reminder of the emancipation of slaves in America.

When questioned about his reluctance to recognize why the oppressed population in this country deserve not to be considered expendable by systemic racism, Pence provided a lackluster statement that reeked of the devilish combo of white privilege and white evangelism:

“In this nation, especially on, on Juneteenth, we celebrate the fact that from the founding of this nation, we cherish the ideal that all, all of us are created equal and endowed by our creator with certain inalienable rights. And so all lives matter in a very real sense.”

WTF?!

I guess Donald Trump’s errand boy is trying to stoically rely on the damning attributes of Christianity, under the tutelage of Jesus Christ, who did spend his short time on earth communing with folks from all walks of life. And based on that theory, in conjunction with biblical verses, it’s assumed that “our creator,” was inspired to design humans with packages of humility and grace.

But in the real world, human beings are more inclined to exert their unearned authority in ways that exact irrevocable harm to those who are within range of those targets.

And this explains why “all lives don’t matter.”

In order for that to happen, our white oppressors would have to humble themselves enough to acknowledge how the lethality of their whiteness has relentlessly and exploitatively assaulted the purity of Blackness in ways that can’t ever be amended in my lifetime.

Interviewer Brian Taff was remarkably patient with his willfully tone deaf interviewee, as evidenced in his further prodding, where he efficiently dissected why saying “all lives matter” is an affront to the current movement that’s putting this moment in our history on the map for future generations.

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