We say black lives matter because systematic racism is alive and real

Sanna Magadalena Mörtudóttir Opinion

Speech given at a solidarity gathering on Austurvöllur.

We say black lives matter, because in the mindset of many they haven’t mattered for 400 years.

We say black lives matter to fight against the ideology that dehumanises black people and black bodies.

Black lives matter because we are fighting against 400 years of oppression, injustice and pain.

We say black lives matter because systematic racism is alive and real.

We need to scream black lives matter because many people don’t seem to realize how harmful the effects of racism are.
Black lives matter because white privilege kills.

Black lives matter because you should be able to go for a jog and return home alive.

Black lives matter because everyone’s home should be their safe haven, not the place that is invaded by intruders who decide to abruptly put an end to their lives.

Black lives matter because black kids shouldn’t be killed for playing with toy guns.

Black lives matter, because everyone deserves to breathe.
Black lives matter because everyone should have the right to air, dignity and freedom.

Black lives matter because black people should be able to walk the streets freely without being brutalized.

Black lives matter because, black mental wellbeing should matter.

Black lives matter, black bodies matter and black culture matters. It is not a commodity for others to steal, capitalize on or culturally appropriate.

Black lives matter, and black bodies are not for show.

Black lives matter and black bodies matter, they shouldn’t be on display for curious eyes to gaze upon, fetishize and objectify.

Black lives matter because black bodies are not to be diminished into stereotypes of dangerous beings or any other stereotypes for that matter.

Black lives matter because the inhumane brutality of racism needs to stop. It should not be maintained, tolerated or excused in any way.

Black lives matter because black people are more than statistics.
Behind every number is an important story. And families and individuals with dreams and desires.

But talking about statistics.

We need to scream black lives matter, because black Americans are two-and-a-half times as likely as white Americans to be killed by the police.

Black lives matter, because each and every human being should be able to live their live without having to fear for their life or grief the loss of a life ended because of injustice.

Black lives matter and solidarity matters. We shouldn’t have to be gathered here today explaining why it’s not alright to kill black people and traumatize black people.

Black lives matter and black people shouldn’t have to explain why they have a right to a joyful life free from racialized harm.
Black people shouldn’t have to plead for justice in the midst of all of this injustice.

But here we are.

Enough is enough.

We need to show a united front in solidarity against racism and brutality.

We live in a world that doesn’t value all lives equally. That needs to stop.

Black lives matter.

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