Sad. #BlackLivesMatter Protesters Condemn Birmingham Unity March
On August 29, 2015, Glenn Beck and 20,000 supporters marched through the streets of Birmingham, Alabama in a unity march.
Thousands marched with Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass signs to the BJCC where Beck held a Restoring Unity Rally.
Birmingham Black Lives Matter leader Kahmille Burroughs condemned the unity rally in an editorial at Alabama.com.
Burroughs said it was offensive to hold the unity march on the same route as the historic 1963 Birmingham march. She also condemned local pastors for attending the march.
By Kahmille Burroughs
Glenn Beck’s descent upon Birmingham with his league of 20,000 on August 29 as part of his Never Again Is Now/All Lives Matter Campaign may be heralded by some as a powerful display of interfaith unity, but it was problematic for a couple of crucial reasons.
Beck’s covertly planned and executed march and the decision to employ the historic route of the 1963 Birmingham Campaign made a resounding statement, a resoundingly irreverent statement.
First of all, Beck rallied thousands to pour in from out-of-state to participate in a Birmingham march that largely excluded the residents of the self- same city. It appears that Beck and local co-organizers did little to reach out to the people of the community before executing march plans guerilla style. Many residents were clueless as to what was even going on.
Why the sneakiness?
Also disconcerting is the collusion of Birmingham’s black church leadership, primarily Bishop Lowe of Guiding Light Church, with Glenn Beck, a man who has demonstrated repeatedly that his ideals and politics cannot address the concerns of the black community. It might appear that some black pastors are more interested in respectability politics than in representing the communities that comprise their churches.
Beck’s strategic choice to have supporters chant “All Lives Matter” along a march route where thousands of black people, primarily black children were hosed, attacked by police dogs and carted off to jail in the fight against institutional racism and the terror of white supremacy was insensitive and dismissive at best.
The All Lives Matter movement has shown itself repeatedly to be a counterfeit movement, a blanketed response to drown out the voices of those crying out for justice, and an attempt to blur the individual faces and specific identities of those suffering, making it easier to ignore their very explicit requests.