All Lives Matter Transcript

[Footage: 3 minute video featuring Alison [white signing woman wearing a black v-neck long sleeved shirt, seated against a black backdrop. She is discussing why All Lives Matter shouldn’t be used.]

I’m Alison Aubrecht. I’d like to discuss #AllLivesMatter. Please know that these are not my original thoughts- much of the discussion I have read and learned about from the Black community, from Black activists and allies. I encourage you to turn to them, too, in order to learn more.

We’ve been seeing more discussion in the last few days— for awhile, actually, but more in the recent days, about #BlackLivesMatter. Some people have reacted with, “But *ALL* lives matter.” I suspect a lot of people don’t understand why this is problematic. Maybe some are more resistant and don’t like how we are giving attention to Black Lives.

I’m hoping that sharing this video in ASL might help some folks in our community. First I want to show you a picture that I think helps illuminate why All Lives Matter doesn’t make sense.

[photo description: Photo is a greyscale comic strip rom First frame has two figures facing each other, and one says, “well, i think that all lives matter.” [emphasis on i and all.] Second frame shows that same person alone in the picture, holding a fire hose. They say, “we should care exactly equally at all times about everything.” Third frame shows two houses and a fence behind the two. The person is holding a hose at a house that is not burning at all. Next to that house is a house on fire. The person says, “All houses matter.” [emphasis on all.].]

So you see, there’s a house with no fire. And a house on fire. The person is spraying water at the house that is not on fire. So what’s the point here? Understand that #BlackLivesMatter does not mean *only* Black lives matter, and everyone elses’ lives are worthless. It means that all lives matter— *should* matter— including Black Lives. The problem is we live in a society that does not show that Black Lives Matter- the Black community is hugely impacted by poverty, by police brutality, the prison industrial complex, by health disparities, discrimination, and so much more. All this sends a message that Black lives don’t matter. So the community is trying to bring attention to this, to say, ‘Hey! Black Lives Matter TOO.”

That’s the point of #BlackLivesMatter. When we say “ALL lives matter,” we are basically putting a hose to a house that is not burning, we’re missing the point. Meanwhile, there’s a burning house (all the violence happening to Black people). We insist on ignoring that crisis and instead making it about us. And doing so we prevent important issues from being discussed and addressed the way that they deserve to be.

So please, stop using that #AllLivesMatter hashtag. If you don’t fully understand the issues, I am willing to make time for you- we can talk on FT, Glide, Private Message, etc. Just stop saying that right now.

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