I’ve been trying to refine my stance on the validity of “looting” and the use of violence or property destruction to further BLM.
The real confusing thing is people are not all arguing about the same thing. When I initially spoke out vehemently against looting in my social media, some people responded with “if you care about the looting, you care more about property than saving lives.” But that’s not true at all. I care both about saving lives and doing it the right way. And it is because I care, that I care about the most effective way of achieving that goal, not just being obediently silent to whomever is condoning the most immediately attractive path. I believe looting is an especially risky and counter-productive way of bringing about social justice.
Unfortunately, Fox news and other media channels also criticized the looters for their own purpose (upholding the status-quo, trying to protect police, trying to glorify their own response to the situation) so some might have even misunderstood me as another Fox news supporter because I started to sound similar to them. 🙁 But our intents were completely different. Fox news and Trump were trying to spin looting narrative for their own profit. I was trying my best to talk sense into people so they don’t commit something they will regret later.
And when I say looting, it had nothing with only destroying property, fire hydrants or whatnot. It actually had to do with people disguising as protesters and then going into stores (such as downtown SoHo) and stealing bags, shoes, goods and other things for their own material gains. Due to journals and newspaper sources, apparently it is very common in historic times (even during LA Rodney King riots) for petty criminals and thieves (in all races, not just one) to disguise as protesters in times of unrest and really just rob shops and stores with no concern for the actual protests themselves.
I also have been realizing that not all property destruction can be treated the same. For example, I am now supportive of symbolic gestures such as taking down statues that have deep relationships with slavery or racism (happened in UK I believe per what I heard) or even what happened during Boston Tea Party, where a group was trying to send a clear message to the powers that be . The message from both instances is clear and was executed by an organized group that cared about the higher purpose. Those cases could be exceptions where it’s justified.
But on the other hand, what message does it send to rob bags and shoes from small business owners of all races when it’s a group of unruly people who really might be doing it with no concern for BLM or anti-police brutality?
I want to see the numbers. I want to see the statistical tally and the division between how many of those lootings are actually organized, symbolic gestures designed to further the BLM movement and send an anti-racist message versus how many are actually unorganized, spur-of-the-moment actions committed by people whose primary focus is stealing. Based on the footage I’ve seen and even African-American ministers and leaders speaking out against the craziness of looting, I wouldn’t be surprised that it is skewed toward the latter demographic.
The one thing I was disappointed by with people on social media is that many peers jumped to defending the looting, somehow believing that “if you don’t support the looting, you don’t support BLM or African-Americans at all” perhaps from the fact that there were African-Americans who were defending the looters too. And in the end, many seemed to echo the sentiment that “because people are angry, looting is okay.”
Right or wrong is a hard thing to determine nowadays. With social media, there’s literally billions of opinions and footages and photoshopped pictures floating around, easily infiltrating people’s minds. I really hope God shows us the path. I still do believe in what Jesus used to say. Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the Children of God. Blessed are those persecuted for the sake of righteousness for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Love those who hate you. Bless those who curse you.
Truth and justice will withstand the test of time. Even if we are misunderstood for being truthful and standing up for justice during the current time, justice and truth will always prevail and the fighters of just causes will always be judged accordingly with enough time. Truth will reveal itself sooner or later. Whether I am wrong or not. It is all God’s will.