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ABTV BLM ON THE GROUND SERIES: 8 DAYS OF PROTEST — DAY 2, BLACK OUT
As we continue down this path in fighting for the rights of Black Americans, it is important not to forget our past as we hope for a better future. That notion is the premise of this 8 Days of Protest Series. This series is a word formatted time capsule, a true primary source. Something to remember these truly historical moments in time. I want to remember the good, the bad, the emotions – everything. So let us pick back up where we’re left off from Day 1. Let’s discuss Day 2.
Protesting can be exhausting. But, exhaustion and tiredness were the last things on my mind during this stretch of fighting for rights of those who look like me. So, on this day, day 2 of my 8 day protest stretch, I found relief in this day landing on the now infamous #BlackoutTuesday.
The beginning of this day felt very heavy for me. #BlackoutTuesday, to me, was more than just posting a black square on your Instagram or Twitter. It was more than a sign of solidarity. It was a moment of reflection. I couldn’t let this moment in time pass by without fully vetting how it made me and others feel.
#BlackoutTuesday also came with an explanation. An reckoning cloaked within a trend. I posted about this realization. The reckoning was rooted in your authenticity of support. My fear in #BlackoutTuesday was that people would follow this portion of our movement as a trend. As I say in the post, “We’re still going to be black next week, next month, next forever.” I made this point to instill the facts that these issues we are protesting against will be here in the future, despite our current efforts. Don’t lose the passion and drive you have for black lives, as we’re still going to be black tomorrow. Allies, please don’t forget this very important point. Be sure to swipe to see the full write up and my thoughts on this day.
Now this post was made following the first day of protests after viewing the national news coverage of Day 1. This post acted as my rebuttal. Hence my wording of the post above, “Don’t let them take the narrative. I know there is immense and frankly unnecessary destruction across the nation. I, of course, do not support that. However, if we’re choosing between broken glass and an entire community’s broken heart, you know what side I’m on.”
I meant exactly that. I received quite a bit of negative feedback regarding the video I posted of the police cruiser being destroyed and broken into. I, as I always do, ignored it. I said it once and I’ll say it again, “Given the chance, we would burn down another cop car as police cruisers can be replaced, black lives cannot.” Furthermore, if those who felt so passionately about property destruction would dedicate a fraction of that same fervor in response to police brutality, perhaps the issue before us today could have been solved decades ago.
This second day of protesting stood out to me even more, because this marks the day I was met with genuine dissent. I have gotten plenty of criticism regarding this next point. I fully understand that I live in a flaming liberal state, and an even more liberal city, Los Angeles. That does, however, not excuse me or anyone else in this country from the ravages of topical hatred. On this day, I was called a “terrorist” by a passerby on a bike.
Now, I get it. I know that not everyone is going to agree with the BLM movement. But, to be called a terrorist is something I definitely didn’t expect. The label of ‘terrorist’ is reserved for the worst of the worst. Clearly, not me. Alas, I was called a terrorist because I decided to exercise my rights as an American. My motive for protesting in the first place was questioned for the first time. While disheartening, those were just words by a coward on a bike. As the old saying goes, “sticks and stones…”
As I noted above, the past is immensely important as we strive for a better future. #BlackoutTuesday was a constant reminder of that on Day 2 of protesting. As I said in the post “Don’t let them take the narrative.” I meant that. No matter the dissent you receive or the criticism from others, don’t let them take your narrative. I know why I protest, I know my motives and I know my heart. This is my narrative and it belongs to me, and only me.
In case you missed the first part of this article series you can check out my thoughts on Day 1 HERE. How did you choose to honor BLM? Was #BlackoutTuesday a successful silent protest? Let me know your thoughts on this and more @JamesMapleActor. For the latest and most honest coverage of the BlackLivesMatter movement, stay tuned to AfterbuzzTV.
James Maple is a LA based TV Host with a passion for music, interviews and outer space. A comedian at heart, James believes laughter, communication and a good 90s jam is a remedy for anything. You can follow him @terrelljamesmaple.
Founded by Emmy winning journalist Maria Menounos and Producer Keven Undergaro, artist-friendly AfterBuzz TV is the world’s largest digital broadcast network and pop culture news platform, producing post-game ‘after-shows’ for nearly all favorite TV shows, interviewing cast and showrunners and providing the widest video, audio and article coverage of shows, content and influencers than any entertainment news platforms in existence
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