Black Lives Matter: Research Essay

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It is clear the study of Black Lives Matter and 'RhodesMustFall' needs to put such emphasis on global history due to the disparity between blacks and all races not just within the UK and the US but also in India, Spain, etc. Becoming victims of many forms of racism including structural and institutional, but also subjected to constant threats, verbal abuse, and exploitation of the law, these political movements highlight every aspect of black history for several reasons. Reiterating the issues decades, years, or centuries ago that have led them to this moment will inform new generations of the past as well as to never repeat them again. Also, historically a lot of individuals from the past have now been idolized for their work and contribution to society, but their hindrance has been overlooked such as Winston Churchill, for instance during their era it was normalized to be a racist or to colonise different countries, arguably he played a big role in helping WW2 but clearly figures like him should not be glorified as such heroes.

Firstly, BLM is a political organization that puts a lot of emphasis on its past due to the many altercations between the government, police, institutions, and public perspective which have been severely hindering any change in literacy, rights, numeracy and even affecting the area which people live in. The author of 'From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation' by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, plainly exclaims the key importance of history by claiming that 'to unfold Black history would include understanding the repression of the federal government exacted against its 'internal enemy' to break their influence among ordinary African Americans' (Taylor, 2016). This quote is evident considering the past injustices that have happened over the years whilst people turned a blind eye to it, notably; one of the most incriminating forms of injustice that has happened to Blacks would be the case of George Stinney Jr., although this case happened in 1944 it holds the utmost significance of injustice towards Blacks by being the youngest person to be executed legally in America only to be overturned after his passing in 2014. (Routine, 2005) This is not the only injustice that has impacted modern black Americans on their actions, living standards, jobs, and education but also the institutions that derive from governments such as the Police. The criticism that comes with policing institutions is when they purposely find ways to instigate more crimes by enforcing smaller crimes such as broken windows, possession of marijuana, and broken taillight, commonly known as 'behavior of the disproportionately poor and working-class people', by pushing minor offenses on Black Americans it would impact their reputation or any job opportunities since this tends to happen in poorer regions some may not be able to afford to pay off their petty crime bill which would thus lead to more black prisoners. (Ben Mabie, 2016) Relatively, blacks have been hindered through institutions from advancing through jobs or simply moving onto better areas since police heavily focus their attention on policing and enforcing the law mostly on petty crimes to hinder any progress. Unfortunately, the sole purpose of this would send black people to prisons which historically have made US funded through prison camp labour, depending on the state they could make as little as $0 and up to $5.15. (Criminal Justice Institute, 2000) Hence, BLM emphasizes history the most due to the illegitimacy of judiciary that takes place but also to hold it against them.

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Furthermore, equally to BLM the movement of #Rhoadesmustfall movement protested at the University of Cape in 2015 which was commemorating Cecil Rhodes which was followed up by large amounts of attention. The movement is described as a 'collective in which students and members work together for direct action against the racist university institution' (Fall, 2016), the symbol of that statue reminded many students of the Imperialist politician who took part in the annexation of South Africa, although he founded the University of Cape Town the situation of his past cannot be overlooked due to his deplorable crimes. The protests which include the falling of the statue of Rhoades are founded by the principle that any South African life has 'improved either negligibly or not at all', thus a symbol to dedicate a statue to a war criminal would be viewed as a symbol of oppression and white privilege. (Nyamnjoh, 2016) Equally, another protest that occurred during the same year was the removal of Mahatma Gandhi from the University of Ghana, history is upheld on behalf of all South-South Africans, even though he was an iconic leader in non-violent protest inspired rebels and revolutions around the world, his ideals were very chaotic. For instance, his conservative views displayed racism by referring to blacks as 'Kaffirs' and numerously attempted to segregate browns and blacks from each other, after forming the NIC (Natal Indian Congress) one of his first acts was campaigning against equality for Indians and black South African, he also instituted for a third door at the post office for the sole purpose he does not share with black people, thus it was achieved. (Anon., 2021) To conclude, the two protests of BLM and the statue protests equally suggest the emphasis on history playing a major role in the perception of black Americans, and black Africans everywhere, it seems overtime 'national heroes' are always overlooked for their racism and though they may have had some significance on society there is no room for glorification.

Overall, the emphasis on history does not solely rely on just 'blacks', but over history, leaders and their achievements have been overlooked severely, thus leading the next generations to glorify racists, they may have been significant heroes for a certain race but also diminishing another with the example of Rhoades should hold its criticism, funding a university solely based off annexation should be seen as appalling and not something to adore.

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Black Lives Matter: Research Essay. (2024, January 18). Edubirdie. Retrieved May 26, 2024, from
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