Madisyn V. Minnesota


#BLM is a relevant issue going on right now and needs to be addressed.

Dear Next President,

A major thing affecting our society right now is the movement Black Lives Matter. There are peaceful protests, but there are also ones filled with violence. This is creating fear and anger, where it doesn’t need to be created. If people would actually listen to each other and think rationally for a moment, this problem would not exist. There are too many false generalizations about African Americans and the police force, specifically white cops, and this is causing bloody conflict.

Many of the protests are peaceful, but not all of them are. According Gateway Pundit article from this year titled “The #BlackLivesMatter Kill List: At Least 11 Cops Shot Dead - 9 More Wounded By #BLM Supporters” by Jim Hoft, “At least 11 police officers have been shot dead and several shot and injured by Black Lives Matter activists since the movement began in August 2014.”. The article also tells more specific stories of how both cops and African Americans have been shot, hurt, or killed. Whether it’s the cops fault or the citizen’s, this needs to stop. Cops shouldn’t be discriminating against race, African Americans shouldn’t act out like this, there should be no backlash, and African Americans shouldn’t have to say their lives matter. Every life matters, and there shouldn’t be a reason to doubt that.

African Americans are not only being affected in specific parts of the United States, this is reaching everywhere in the country. Here in Minnesota, there has not been that many events held having to do with this topic and we only really see what is happening on the news. A friend who lives here told us a story that serves as a good example. It is probably useful to note that she is Caucasian. She told my family about how their cat had been hit and killed by a car while roaming outside in their neighborhood. It was hit on purpose, and caught on a camera which was part of a neighbor’s security system. The driver had swerved in order to hit the cat, but this driver had been identified as one of the only African Americans in their neighborhood. When the police had gone to his house to question him, he claimed that they were only questioning him because of his skin color. The cops were surprised to hear this, and said that was not the case, and that they were only there because they had the security camera footage. Even our friend who was angry that this man had killed their cat told us she they didn’t care what skin color he was. The only thing that mattered was what he did. But he felt attacked. He felt discriminated against, just because of what is happening to people who look like him. All cops are getting a bad reputation because the mistakes that a group of them made.

A better example from a Caucasian cop’s point of view was told to my father. My dad knows a white cop who lives in our neighborhood and they were talking about the Black Lives Matter issue. The cop told a story of how a African American woman was driving with her kids in the car, and how they broke a simple road rule like going through a red light or speeding. When the cop went to pull her over, she wouldn’t stop the car. Eventually he cut her off and got her to stop. After talking with the mom, he had talked to the kids. He asked “Why didn’t your mother stop the car?” and the kids replied “Because cops shoot us.”. Kids should not be having to worry about something like that. Something needs to be done to show these kids that not all white cops are bad, but instead they are influenced by what they see on TV. While the news shows stories from cops point of view, and African American’s point of view, all the stories are very one sided and do not express the fact that both sides can be correct and have a good argument. Someone who isn’t on one side and who can just think rationally needs to tell people how to handle the situation. Instead of the news only talking about how tragic it is when someone gets hurt.

Even though I believe that everyone should just calm down and handle this like sane human beings, I know that can’t happen. We can’t just ignore the facts and go pretend like this isn’t happening. A Townhall article written this year by Joe Pappalardo titled “5 Facts Black Lives Matter Gets Right” states that “Police are not shooting black and white suspects at the same rate. In a study of Houston, Texas police officers, economist Roland G. Fryer, Jr. discovered that police were 23.8 percent less likely to shoot at black suspects than white suspects. In situations where lethal force may have been justified, blacks had less chance of being shot than whites.”. I know what you are thinking. Aren’t you supposed to be proving that African Americans are being treated unfairly? Yes, they are. But we all are. That’s why this topic of Police officers vs. African Americans issue is pointless. There are cops that are racist, but not all cops are that way. And that is what needs to be shown to people. Yes, sometimes African Americans can lash out at police, but that doesn’t mean all of them will. Something needs to be done to end this and to get rid of these stereotypes, because if it continues this way, more people will get hurt.


Madisyn Vanasse

10th grade

Eagan, MN