Not Buying It

by Sam Melden

Yesterday I went to the Action is NOW community round table discussion at the Frederick Douglass Center. The unity in the room was inspiring, the stories were significant and the call to action was challenging. And… I walked away feeling so committed to erase lines, to collaborate, to work together and support the work already being done. That was one of the main messages.

I also walked away feeling more strongly committed to act on my belief, not just say, that Black Lives Matter. I am inspired by people I heard speak yesterday. My friend Reggie Williams poured out his heart in that space. When said he was tired I knew I had to spend my energy to help hold his arms up. I’ve never felt his tired. So, I’ll be taking small steps to move forward on support and action and change. Man, just so much to reflect on from that gathering.


And then I read the paper this morning. And I got to this political cartoon. And I want to say: I reject it. Messages like this in media are damaging. This is not simply saying that “Blue Lives Matter” or that what happened in Dallas was an awful, unjust tragedy. This cartoon, in the way it is carefully and intentionally constructed is putting one loss over the other. It is literally crossing out the cry of a people. It is trying to fool you in suggesting that the word they just crossed out is somehow included in the two words that follow. It may be technically true, but it’s not right. It’s not helpful. It’s not creative. It’s not generating the type of life and imagination we need. It’s pulling us into old ways of thinking. And I’m not buying it… anymore.