Why 'All Lives Matter' can be offensive

For the protesters in front of the Governor's Mansion Tuesday afternoon, the response “all lives matter” is commonly heard as a rebuttal to the “black lives matter” message. To most of the group gathered on Summit Ave the phrase "all lives matter" is not only short-sighted, but insensitive and offensive.

“What we’re seeing right now is that all lives don’t matter,” Rashad Turner of Black Lives Matter St. Paul said. “If all lives really mattered, we wouldn’t have a governor telling us that it’s inappropriate to protest.”

The group of about 100 protestors had gathered on the lawn to ask Gov. Dayton to respond to a remark he made last week calling the Black Lives Matter protest at the State Fair “inappropriate.”

“Either he’s sleep and not paying attention, or he really doesn’t care, or he was just responding because money was on the line,” Turner continued.

Following the gathering the protestors took to the streets around the mansion, demanding an end to  racial discrimination and an independent investigation into the death of Marcus Golden who was shot by police in January 2015.
The movement’s rhetoric hasn’t been well-received by all. It has been deemed dangerous by people across the country even blamed for increased racial tensions and aggression towards police.

"We've heard 'Black lives matter,' 'all lives matter.' Well cops' lives matter too. So why don't we drop the qualifier and just say: lives matter. And take that to the bank." Harris County Texas. Sheriff Ron Hickman said at a news conference following the killing of a sheriff’s deputy.

Tuesday morning Fox 9 received a picture over Facebook of a woman demonstrating alone with an American flag in hand outside of St. Paul Peace Officer’s Memorial -- “all lives matter” written on her tank top.

“We already know all lives matter and that’s kind of the whole point of this whole movement,” says Black Lives Matter protestor Susan Montgomery.

To the vast majority of organizers and BLM movement members, the canned response "all lives matter" is not only covertly disrespectful; it is subtle perpetuation of the behavior, attitude, and mindset that has them protesting in the first place.

“We are apart of those 'all lives' " Turner added. The next Black Lives Matter St. Paul protest will be at the capital Saturday at the Confederate Flag Rally.