John Perazzo, Frontpage Magazine, September 1, 2020
What’s in a Name?
During the run-up to the war in Iraq in early 2003, a coalition named United for Peace & Justice (UPJ) played a central role in organizing most of the major anti-war demonstrations across the United States. The coalition’s name was deliberately crafted to evoke positive associations in the hearts of the American people. After all, who could possibly oppose such lofty virtues as “peace” or “justice”?
But United for Peace & Justice’s actual purpose had very little to do with either of those virtues. At its core, it was a hate-America coalition that sought to save the regime of one of the monsters of the 20th century, Saddam Hussein, using slogans that relentlessly accused the U.S. of pursuing a “policy of permanent warfare and empire-building” around the world.
The co-chair and principal leader of UPJ was Leslie Cagan, a longtime Communist Party member and a national leader of the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy & Socialism, a self-identified Marxist entity seeking to bring “a 21st Century socialism” to America. In the Sixties, Cagan was an enthusiastic supporter of the Black Panther Party, a gang that waged armed warfare against the police and engaged in criminality that included drug dealing, pimping, rape, extortion, assault, arson and murder.
Cagan was also a strong supporter of the Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, whose nation she described as “not an abstract idea of socialism or revolution,” but as a society whose principal hallmark was a type of “humane interaction among people” that she “had never witnessed” in the United States. And she supported the 2002-03 “Not In Our Name” initiative, a project of the Revolutionary Communist Party that seeks to achieve a Communist America by means of a “revolutionary war”—complete with “great bloodshed and destruction”—waged “right within the belly of this most powerful imperialist beast.”
Obviously, the promotion of “peace and justice” could scarcely be described as the true, animating objective of Ms. Cagan and her UPJ coalition.
More recently, another prominent, enormously influential movement—which just happens to be backed by this same Leslie Cagan—has similarly adopted a benign sounding name that resonates quite naturally with people of good will. But that name—Black Lives Matter—deceptively conceals a radical, racist, and horrifically destructive agenda.
An Openly and Proudly Marxist Movement
When BLM was established in 2013, its stated objective was to galvanize a protest movement in response to the July 2013 acquittal of George Zimmerman, a so-called “white Hispanic” man who was tried for murder and manslaughter after he had shot and killed a black Florida teenager named Trayvon Martin in a highly publicized 2012 altercation. Before long, “Black Lives Matter” became a rallying cry for writers, public speakers, celebrities, demonstrators, and even rioters, who took up the cause of demanding an end to what BLM terms the “virulent anti-Black racism” that “permeates our society.”
BLM gained additional prominence following a white police officer’s fatal shooting of an 18-year-old black man named Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri in August 2014. Brown’s death, which occurred while he fought with the officer just minutes after having robbed a local convenience store, set off a massive wave of protests and riots that grew into a national movement denouncing an alleged epidemic of police brutality against African Americans.
But BLM’s larger objective went far beyond matters of interracial violence and police misconduct. Its overarching mission was to thoroughly discredit the United States as a detestable and irredeemable nation where black people are “collectively” subjected to “inhumane conditions” in a “white supremacist system” that was originally “built on Indigenous genocide and chattel slavery.” Dedicated to advancing this theme were BLM’s founders, three hardcore Marxist black women. One of them was Alicia Garza, a self-described “queer” social-justice activist who reveres the Marxist revolutionary, former Black Panther, convicted cop-killer, and longtime fugitive Assata Shakur for her contributions to the “Black Liberation Movement.” Garza is likewise a great admirer of such luminaries as Angela Davis (another revolutionary Marxist and former Black Panther) and the late Audre Lorde (a black socialist lesbian feminist).
Another of BLM’s three founders was Patrisse Cullors, who in 2015 openly acknowledged BLM’s subversive objectives, proclaiming on video: “We actually do have an ideological frame. Myself and Alicia [Garza] in particular, we’re trained organizers. We are trained Marxists. We are super versed on ideological theories.” In the same video, Cullors revealed that for more than a decade she had been a protégé of Eric Mann, who in the 1960s and ’70s was a member of the Students for a Democratic Society and the Weather Underground. Both organizations aspired to topple U.S. democratic institutions by means of violent revolution, remake the nation’s government in a Marxist image, and promote America’s military defeat in Vietnam.
BLM’s third founder was Opal Tometi, who asserts that “the racist structures that have long oppressed Black people” in the U.S. have perpetuated a “cycle of oppression” and a permanent climate of “anti-Black racism.” In 2015, Tometi attended a “People of African Descent Leadership Summit” in Harlem, New York, where she had a warm meeting and photo-op with Venezuela’s Marxist dictator, Nicolas Maduro. During a speech which she delivered at that Summit, Tometi thanked Maduro and his government for having given her an opportunity to speak there. She also used the occasion to condemn “Western economic policies, land grabs, and neocolonial financial instruments like the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.” The following year, Tometi praised the Bolivarian Revolution by which Venezuela’s previous Marxist dictator, the late Hugo Chavez—whose policies transformed Venezuela from South America’s wealthiest nation into an economic basket case—had initially come to power.
BLM’s pro-Marxist orientation was articulated with great passion at a BLM protest in July 2016, when Cornell University professor Russell Rickford declared: “We’ve got to build a grassroots, antiracist movement to defeat capitalism altogether, and it’s not going to happen at the ballot box. There can be no human system under capitalism. Capitalism is an anti-human system.”
With chapters in 14 separate U.S. cities and 3 Canadian cities, BLM is closely allied with numerous groups that are fronts for the Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO), a Marxist-Leninist entity that advocates the overthrow of capitalism. In an article for Accuracy In Media, economist and investigative journalist James Simpson has identified some of these FRSO front groups with BLM ties. They include the National Domestic Workers Alliance; People Organized to Win Employment Rights; the Right to the City Alliance; the School of Unity and Liberation; the Advancement Project; the Movement Strategy Center; Dignity and Power Now; the Black Left Unity Network; Black Workers for Justice; the Grassroots Global Justice Alliance; Causa Justa/Just Cause; Hands Up United; Intelligent Mischief; the Organization for Black Struggle; the Revolutionary Student Coordinating Committee; Showing Up for Racial Justice; Strategic Concepts in Organizing and Policy Education; and the Labor/Community Strategy Center (headed by former Weather Underground leader Eric Mann).
As evidenced by these numerous links between FRSO and BLM, Black Lives Matter is in essence, as James Simpson puts it, “one of many projects undertaken by the FRSO.” All three of BLM’s co-founders have been employed by, or affiliated with, one or more of FRSO’s aforementioned front groups at various times.
At all of BLM’s public events, demonstrators invoke the words that their “beloved” heroine, Assata Shakur, once wrote in a letter titled “To My People.” Those words are: “It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win. We must love each other and support each other. We have nothing to lose but our chains.” (The fourth line was drawn from the Communist Manifesto of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels.) In Shakur’s original letter, she described herself as a “Black revolutionary” who had “declared war” against “the rich who prosper on our poverty,” and against “all the mindless, heart-less robots” who served as police officers.
Rejecting the Traditional Nuclear Family
In a document titled “What We Believe,” BLM candidly affirms its preference for identity politics based on race: “We see ourselves as part of the global Black family.” BLM also proclaims its desire to “disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement” and replace it with the socialist ideal of “villages” serving as “extended families” that “collectively care for one another.” This is a profoundly significant facet of BLM’s agenda, because it rejects the singular value that, if it were to be embraced, would offer black Americans the tools they most need in order to carve out for themselves a prosperous and fulfilling life. At present, the traditional nuclear family is a statistical rarity in the black community. Fully 69.4% of black babies today are born to unmarried mothers in homes where no father is present. This fact alone has a host of catastrophic implications for those youngsters.
For example, father-absent families—black and white alike—generally occupy the bottom rung of our society’s economic ladder. As Heritage Foundation research fellow Robert Rector has explained: “Out-of-wedlock childbearing and single parenthood are the principal causes of child poverty and welfare dependence in the U.S…. Children born out-of-wedlock to never-married women are poor fifty percent of the time. By contrast, children born within a marriage which remains intact are poor 7 percent of the time. Thus, the absence of marriage increases the frequency of child poverty 700 percent.” Articulating a similar theme many years earlier, Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Nothing is so much needed as a secure family life for a people to pull themselves out of poverty.”
Much more recently, the left-leaning Brookings Institution has identified three basic requirements for avoiding poverty, regardless of one’s race: “Finish high school, get a full-time job, and wait until age 21 to get married and [then] have children.” “Our research,” says Brookings, “shows that of American adults who followed these three simple rules, only about 2 percent are in poverty and nearly 75 percent have joined the middle class.”
Children in single-parent households are raised not only with economic, but also social and psychological, disadvantages. For instance, they are much more likely than children from intact families to be abused or neglected; to struggle academically; to drop out of school; to have behavioral problems; to experience emotional disorders; to have a weak sense of right and wrong; to be unable to delay gratification; to conceive children out-of-wedlock when they are teens or young adults; and to be dependent on welfare when they reach adulthood.
In addition, growing up without a father is a far better forecaster of a boy’s future criminality than either race or poverty. Indeed, 70% of juveniles in state-operated reform institutions were raised in fatherless homes, as were 70% of long-term prison inmates, 75% of adolescent murderers, and 80% of rapists motivated by displaced anger. As Robert Rector once put it: “Lack of married parents, rather than race or poverty, is the principal factor in the crime rate.”
And yet, in spite of all this, BLM openly calls for a complete dismantling of the nuclear family system. Why? Because Marxist ideology demands it. As California State University professor Richard Weikart has explained, Marx and Engels “usually wrote about the destruction, dissolution, and abolition of the family” as a natural outgrowth of “the abolition of private property and the introduction of socialism.” Because Marx and Engels advocated these ideas, BLM dutifully embraces them as articles of faith. This fact alone serves as proof positive that BLM cares nothing about the overwhelming majority of black lives.
The only black people whose lives mean anything to BLM are the infinitesimally small number who happen to die as a result of some type of altercation with a white person, especially a police officer. Those black lives are exceedingly valuable to BLM, because their corpses can be exploited as exhibits to bolster BLM’s claim that white racism poses a grave threat to black Americans. Thus, BLMers are quite adept at reciting, from memory, the names of a handful of blacks who, in recent years, died at the hands of white police in highly publicized incidents. But they are entirely mute vis-à-vis the thousands of blacks whose lives are snuffed out by black killers each and every year. Those lives, long forgotten, are of no interest whatsoever to BLM.
BLM’s False Claims About the Police and White-on-Black Crime
Depicting America as a veritable cesspool of “state-sanctioned violence and anti-Black racism,” BLM claims that blacks in the U.S. today are routinely targeted for “extrajudicial killings … by police and vigilantes.” And although this claim has been widely and passionately echoed by supporters of BLM, it is in fact a monstrous lie, as has been demonstrated consistently by decades of hard empirical evidence. Some examples:
A 2011 Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) study reports that between 2003 and 2009, whites accounted for 41% of all suspects known to have been killed by police during that 7-year time frame. By contrast, blacks and Hispanics accounted for 31.7% and 20.3%, respectively. It is also worth noting that during this same period—when blacks were 31.7% of all suspects killed by an officer—blacks accounted for about 38.5% of all arrests for violent crimes, which are the types of crimes most likely to trigger potentially deadly confrontations with police.
This trend has continued unabated during more recent years. In 2017, for example, blacks were just 23.6% of all people shot dead by police, even though they were arrested for 37.5% of all violent crimes. The following year, blacks were 26.3% of those fatally shot by police, even as they were arrested for fully 37.4% of violent crimes.
In a 2018 working paper titled “An Empirical Analysis of Racial Differences in Police Use of Force,” Harvard economist Roland Fryer, who is African American, reported that: (a) police officers were 47% less likely to discharge their weapon without first being attacked if the suspect was black, than if the suspect was white, and (b) white officers were no more likely to shoot unarmed blacks than unarmed whites.
A 2019 study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows that white officers are no more likely than black or Hispanic officers to shoot black civilians. “In fact,” writes Manhattan Institute scholar Heather Mac Donald, the study found that “if there is a bias in police shootings after crime rates are taken into account, it is against white civilians.” Specifically, Mac Donald adds, the authors of the study compiled a database of 917 officer-involved fatal shootings in 2015 and found that 55% of the victims were white, 27% were black, and 19% were Hispanic.
Each and every year, without exception, whites who are shot and killed by police officers in the U.S. far outnumber blacks and Hispanics who meet that same fate. In 2017, for instance, 457 whites, 223 blacks, and 179 Hispanics were killed by police officers in the line of duty. In 2018, the corresponding figures were 399 whites, 209 blacks, and 148 Hispanics. And in 2019, the totals were 370 whites, 235 blacks, and 158 Hispanics.
According to Heather Mac Donald: “The per capita rate of officers being feloniously killed [by anyone] is 45 times higher than the rate at which unarmed black males are killed by cops. And an officer’s chance of getting killed by a black assailant is 18.5 times higher than the chance of an unarmed black getting killed by a cop.”
According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, in 2018 there were 593,598 interracial violent victimizations (excluding homicide) between black and white civilians in the United States. Blacks committed 537,204 of those interracial felonies, or 90.4%, while whites committed just 56,394 of them, or about 9.5%.
When white civilian offenders committed crimes of violence against either whites or blacks in 2018, they targeted white victims approximately 97.3% of the time, and they went after black victims about 2.6% of the time. By contrast, when black civilian offenders committed crimes of violence against either whites or blacks during that same year, they targeted white victims 58% of the time, and they went after black victims 42% of the time.
City Journal reports that according to Justice Department data, blacks in 2018 were overrepresented among the perpetrators of offenses classified as “hate crimes” by a whopping 50%—while whites were underrepresented by 24%.
There is not even the slightest hint of anti-black racism anywhere in these figures. But when BLMers are confronted with such incontrovertible facts, they simply do not care. Indeed, they invariably react with the intellectual equivalent of a collective yawn.
Echoes of the Black Panthers
To improve the allegedly abysmal condition of blacks in the United States, BLM has issued a series of non-negotiable demands that are clearly modeled on elements of the famous “Ten-Point Program” put forth by the Marxist leaders of the Black Panther Party in the 1960s.
For example, BLM demands “an immediate end to police brutality and [to] the murder of Black people and all oppressed people.” The Panthers used language that was essentially identical, calling for “an immediate end to police brutality and murder of black people.”
And whereas BLM has demanded “freedom from mass incarceration and an end to the prison industrial complex,” the Panthers similarly called for “Black people [to] be released from the many jails and prisons because they have not received a fair and impartial trial.”
But BLM’s demands are not limited merely to matters involving police and the criminal-justice system. They also include overtly socialist and racialist agenda items such as the guarantee of taxpayer-funded entitlements like:
“full, living-wage employment for our [black] people”
“decent housing” for black people
“quality education for all,” including “free or affordable public university” enrollment, with an emphasis on teaching “the rich history of Black people and celebrat[ing] the contributions we have made to this country and the world”
Those demands closely resemble elements of the Black Panthers’ Ten-Point Program, which called for assurances of:
“full employment” or “a guaranteed income” for all of “our people”
“decent housing [for] our Black community”
“education for our people that exposes the true nature of this decadent American society [and] teaches us our true history and our role in the present-day society”
In a number of very significant respects, BLM is a modern-day reincarnation of the Black Panthers.
BLM’s Rhetoric & Activities
Routinely smearing white police officers as trigger-happy bigots who are intent upon killing innocent, unarmed black males, BLM activists have become infamous for their incendiary rhetoric and behavior. Some examples:
At a December 2014 BLM rally in New York City, marchers chanted in unison: “What do we want? Dead cops. When do we want it? Now.”
At a July 2015 Netroots Nation convention in Phoenix, BLM activists led the crowd in the following chant:
If I die in police custody, don’t believe the hype. I was murdered!
Protect my family! Indict the system! Shut that shit down!
If I die in police custody, avenge my death!
By any means necessary!
If I die in police custody, burn everything down!
No building is worth more than my life!
And that’s the only way motherfuckers like you listen!
At a BLM march in August 2015, protesters chanted: “Pigs in a blanket, fry ’em like bacon.” (“Pigs” was a reference to police officers, and “blanket” was a reference to body bags.)
On August 25, 2015, a radio host affiliated with BLM enthusiastically agreed with a caller who suggested that black people should “find a [white] motherfucker that’s alone, smack his ass, and then fucking hang him from a damn tree, take a picture of it, and send it to motherfuckers…. As soon as one person gets hung, people are gonna have an idea to do that shit some more…. Black people are good at starting trends.”
During a radio broadcast on September 1, 2015, another BLM-affiliated host: (a) laughed at the recent assassination of a white Texas deputy; (b) boasted that blacks were like lions who could prevail in a “race war” against whites; (c) happily predicted that “we will witness more executions and killing of white people and cops than we ever have before”; and (d) declared that “it’s open season on killing white people and crackas.”
A co-founder of BLM’s Toronto branch, Yusra Khogali, once posted the following message on Facebook: “Whiteness is not humxness. infact, white skin is sub-humxn…. White ppl are recessive genetic defects. this is factual.”
In November 2015, a group of approximately 150 BLM protesters shouting “Black Lives Matter,” stormed Dartmouth University’s library, screaming things like “Fuck you, you filthy white fucks!” and “Fuck you, you racist shit!”
On June 21, 2016—a few days after a self-proclaimed Muslim jihadist had used an AR-15 rifle to murder 49 people and wound 53 others in a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida—BLM posted an article on its website blaming “the conservative right” for the atrocity. “[T]he enemy is now and has always been the four threats of white supremacy, patriarchy, capitalism, and militarism,” said the piece.
In July 2016, a BLM activist speaking to a CNN reporter shouted: “The less white babies on this planet, the less of you [white adults] we got! I hope they kill all the white babies! Kill ’em all right now! Kill ’em! Kill your grandkids! Kill yourself! Coffin, bitch! Go lay in a coffin! Kill yourself!”
At a BLM rally in Dallas on July 7, 2016, a black gunman suddenly opened fire and killed five policemen while wounding seven more. The perpetrator later explained that he had purposefully set out to kill white people—especially white police. In the wake of the carnage, a group of dancing, shouting BLM activists in Dallas taunted uniformed cops who were on duty.
On August 13, 2016, BLM activists in Milwaukee chanted “Black power!” and engaged in highly destructive violence after police in that city had shot and killed a black man with a lengthy criminal record who was carrying an illegal gun that had been stolen in a burglary five months earlier. Black rioters tried to drag white drivers out of their cars and assault them, and they set numerous businesses on fire.
In April 2017, BLM’s Philadelphia chapter banned white people from attending one of its events, explaining that it was being held in a “black only space.”
In November and December of 2017, BLM’s Los Angeles chapter organized a “Black Xmas” initiative that urged African Americans to avoid patronizing white-owned business establishments for the remainder of the calendar year.
In June 2020, BLM activist Shaun King declared that all religious statues and stained glass windows showing a light-skinned Jesus should be destroyed because “they are a form of white supremacy.”
In a June 2020 interview, BLM’s New York chairman Hawk Newsome said: “If this country doesn’t give us what we want, then we will burn down this system and replace it.”
On July 15, 2020, Lawrence Nathaniel, the founder of BLM’s South Carolina chapter and a former organizer for Senator Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign, defended black television personality Nick Cannon’s recent assertions that: (a) light-skinned people are “a little less” than darker people whose skin possesses more melanin, which is a source of “power,” “compassion,” and “soul”; (b) an insecurity born of melanin “deficiency” has historically caused “Jewish people, white people, [and] Europeans” to become “savages” with a “conquering barbaric mentality” that leads them to “rob, steal, rape, kill, and fight”; and (c) whites are “the true savages” who “are actually closer to animals.” “What Nick Cannon believes in,” Mr. Nathaniel stated, “is the beliefs of Louis Farrakhan and Malcolm X who taught the same teachings of what white folks was and how they are and how they treat Black people…. Personally, I didn’t see nothing wrong with his comments at all, I just think that he spoke the truth.”
Saul Alinsky’s Influence on BLM
At a Black Lives Matter conference in Cleveland on July 24, 2015, BLM presented a workshop for radical agitators titled “There’s A Method To The Movement: Examining Community Organizing Methods and Methodologies”. Those in attendance were instructed in the tactics and philosophy of the late Saul Alinsky. Known as the godfather of “community organizing”—a term that serves as a euphemism for fomenting public discontent—Alinsky was a communist fellow traveler who laid out a set of basic strategies designed to help leftist radicals destroy their enemies and transform society into a socialist paradise.
If such radicals were to be successful in remaking society, said Alinsky, they “must first rub raw the resentments of the people” by identifying a particular “personification” of evil and “publicly attack[ing]” it as a “dangerous enemy” of all that is decent. The chief “personification” in BLM’s cross hairs today, of course, is the white police officer.
“Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it,” Alinsky taught, asserting that the primary task of radicals is to cultivate, in people’s hearts, a visceral revulsion to the mere sight of the target’s face. “The organizer who forgets the significance of personal identification,” said Alinsky, “will attempt to answer all objections on the basis of logic and merit. With few exceptions this is a futile procedure.” That is why BLM and its apologists invariably avoid addressing even the most glaring errors in the anti-police, anti-white narratives they seek to advance, and why they turn a deaf ear to anyone who tries to engage them with logic, reason, or empirical data.
Alinsky taught that in order to cast themselves as noble defenders of high moral principles, radical activists should take pains to react dramatically—with greatly exaggerated displays of “shock, horror, and moral outrage”—whenever their targeted enemy errs, or can be depicted as having erred, in any way at all. Thus, even though American police officers annually have some 375 million civilian contacts in which they behave entirely within the bounds of legality and ethics, BLM chooses to magnify—with choreographed indignation—the significance of a tiny handful of questionable cases, and to characterize those as emblems of supposedly widespread police misconduct.
Alinsky advised radical activists to avoid the temptation to concede that their opponents are not “100 percent devil,” or that they may possess certain admirable qualities. Such concessions, he said, would “dilut[e] the impact of the attack” and would thus amount to “political idiocy.” That is why we never hear BLM praising the police for anything. Instead, it is 100% attack, 100% of the time, against a 100% devil.
Given that the enemy is to be portrayed as the very personification of evil—against whom the use of any and all tactics is fair game—Alinsky taught that an effective radical activist should never give the appearance of being satisfied with any compromise proposed by the opposition. After all, any bargain with the “devil” is, by definition, morally tainted. The ultimate goal, said Alinsky, is not to arrive at peaceful coexistence, but rather, to completely “crush the opposition” by remaining vigilantly “dedicated to eternal war.” “A war is not an intellectual debate,” Alinsky elaborated, “and in the war against social evils there are no rules of fair play.… When you have war, it means that neither side can agree on anything…. [T]here can be no compromise. It is life or death.” In perfect fidelity to these principles, BLM’s foot soldiers make it quite clear that they are constantly aggrieved and never satisfied.
Alinsky advised the radical activist to be ever on guard against the possibility that the enemy might someday propose “a constructive alternative” aimed at resolving some particular conflict. “You cannot risk being trapped by the enemy in his sudden agreement with your demand,” said Alinsky, for such a turn of events would have the effect of diffusing the righteous indignation of the radical, whose very identity is inextricably woven into the “struggle” for long-denied justice. If the perceived oppressor extends a hand of friendship in an effort to end the conflict, the crusade of the radical is jeopardized. This cannot be permitted, because “eternal war,” by definition, must never end.
Alinsky also exhorted radical activists to be entirely unpredictable and unmistakably willing—for the sake of their crusade—to plunge society at large into chaos and anarchy. They must be prepared, Alinsky explained, to “go into a state of complete confusion and draw [their] opponent into the vortex of the same confusion.”
One way in which radicals and their disciples could signal their preparedness for this possibility, Alinsky taught, was by staging loud, angry, massive demonstrations denouncing their political adversaries. Such events—like BLM’s signature protests and riots—can give onlookers the impression that an already large movement is in the process of shifting into an even higher gear. A “mass impression,” said Alinsky, can be lasting and intimidating: “Power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have.” “The threat,” he added, “is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.” Putting it yet another way, Alinsky advised: “Wherever possible, go outside the experience of the enemy. Here you want to cause confusion, fear, and retreat.”
That is exactly what BLM seeks to cultivate in the hearts of its adversaries
Patrisse Cullors, protégé of Eric Mann, spoke the truth when she famously described herself and her fellow BLM co-founder, Alicia Garza, as “trained Marxists” who are “super versed on ideological theories.” Among the most significant of those theories are the teachings of Saul Alinsky, whose call for relentless, uncompromising, “eternal war”—geared toward the destruction of America and the creation of a Marxist utopia—is the spirit that beats in the very heart of the BLM movement.
The Deadly Consequences of BLM’s Rhetoric
In 2013 and beyond, a number of black criminal suspects who had lost their lives in the course of confrontations with police officers joined Trayvon Martin as new, martyred icons of the BLM movement. Prominent among these were Eric Garner (died July 17, 2014 in New York), Michael Brown (died August 9, 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri), Tamir Rice (died November 22, 2014 in Cleveland), and Freddie Gray (died April 12, 2015 in Baltimore). High-profile political leaders such as President Barack Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, and the Democrat mayors of the cities where the aforementioned deaths took place, routinely depicted race as a major underlying factor in those deaths
In December 2014, for instance, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio—explicitly exhorting New Yorkers to remember that “black lives matter”—lamented the “centuries of racism” whose legacy was still supposedly influencing the actions of too many police officers. And in the aftermath of Freddie Gray’s death in April 2015, Baltimore mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake called on the U.S. Department of Justice to conduct a civil-rights investigation to determine whether Baltimore police may have been engaging in unconstitutional patterns of abuse or discrimination against African Americans.
The anti-police rhetoric of such political figures, coupled with the aggressive, confrontational tactics of BLM agitators, gave rise to a climate of extreme hostility toward law-enforcement officers throughout urban America. With an increasingly militant “criminal element” now “feeling empowered” by this climate, explained St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson, officers became less proactive in apprehending lawbreakers, particularly for low-level offenses. This, in turn, led to dramatic spikes in violent crime and homicide rates in cities across the United States—a phenomenon that Dotson, citing the highly publicized August 2014 death of Michael Brown, dubbed “the Ferguson Effect.” For example:
In 2015, America’s 56 largest cities experienced a 17% rise in homicides.
Twelve cities with large black populations saw their 2015 murder totals spike even more dramatically—e.g., by 54% in D.C., 60% in Newark, 72% in Milwaukee, 83% in Nashville, and 90% in Cleveland.
The incidence of robberies surged in America’s 81 largest cities during the 12 months that followed the 2014 shooting of Michael Brown.
In May 2015, Manhattan Institute scholar Heather Mac Donald wrote at length about the Ferguson Effect and its deadly implications:
“The nation’s two-decades-long crime decline may be over. Gun violence in particular is spiraling upward in cities across America…. The most plausible explanation of the current surge in lawlessness is the intense agitation against American police departments over the past nine months. Since last summer, theairwaves have been dominated by suggestions that the police are the biggest threat facing young black males today. A handful of highly publicized deaths of unarmed black men, often following a resisted arrest … have led to riots, violent protests and attacks on the police….
“President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder … embraced the conceit that law enforcement in black communities is infected by bias. The news media pump out a seemingly constant stream of stories about alleged police mistreatment of blacks…. Almost any police shooting of a black person, no matter how threatening the behavior that provoked the shooting, now provokes angry protests…. Arrests in black communities are even more fraught than usual, with hostile, jeering crowds pressing in on officers and spreading lies about the encounter. Acquittals of police officers for the use of deadly force against black suspects are now automatically presented as a miscarriage of justice.”
The spike in urban violence continued into 2016. During the first quarter of that year, homicides in the nation’s 63 largest cities increased by 9%, while nonfatal shootings were up 21%.
In January 2017 the Pew Research Center released a 97-page report titled “Behind the Badge,” which—based on the results of a questionnaire that had been sent to thousands of officers in police departments nationwide—confirmed the reality of the Ferguson Effect. It found that 85 to 95 percent of law-enforcement officers in large police departments had become highly reluctant to engage criminals except where absolutely necessary, and had become increasingly concerned about their own personal safety.
But the rise in urban crime was not at all troubling to BLM, because, notwithstanding the movement’s constant professions of concern for black lives, the reality is quite different. What matters most to BLM is finding a spark—e.g., allegations of police vigilantism—that can be used to ignite a race war; to take America back to the “long hot summers” of the 1960s, when criminals were seen as radical “heroes,” police had a bull’s-eye on their backs, and the streets of America’s inner cities ran red with fantasies of “revolutionary violence.”
Support for BLM from President Obama and the Demo-cratic Party
In August 2015, the Democratic National Committee approved a resolution stating that “the DNC joins with Americans across the country in affirming ‘Black Lives Matter’” and its quest to “condemn extrajudicial killings of unarmed African American men, women and children.” “The American Dream,” added the statement, “… is a nightmare for too many young people stripped of their dignity under the vestiges of slavery, Jim Crow and White Supremacy.”
On September 16, 2015, five BLM activists met at the White House with President Barack Obama as well as senior advisor Valerie Jarrett and other administration officials. For one of the activists, Brittany Packnett, this was her seventh visit to the Obama White House. Afterward, Packnett told reporters that the president had “offered us a lot of encouragement,” “told us that even incremental changes were progress,” and exhorted Packnett to “keep speaking truth to power.”
In October 2015, President Obama publicly articulated his support for BLM’s agenda by saying: “I think the reason that the organizers [of BLM] used the phrase ‘Black Lives Matter’ was not because they were suggesting nobody else’s lives matter. Rather, what they were suggesting was there is a specific problem that’s happening in the African-American community that’s not happening in other communities. And that is a legitimate issue that we’ve got to address.”
That same month, the DNC invited activists from BLM to help organize and host a town hall forum where the Democratic Party’s presidential candidates could discuss and debate matters related to racial justice. In a letter addressed to BLM leaders, DNC chief executive officer Amy Dacey wrote: “We believe that your organization would be an ideal host for a presidential candidate forum—where all of the Democratic candidates can … address racism in America.”
In a December 2015 interview on National Public Radio, President Obama lauded BLM for shining “sunlight” on the lamentable fact that “there’s no black family that hasn’t had a conversation around the kitchen table about driving while black and being profiled or being stopped” by police.
In January 2016, BLM co-founder Alicia Garza was a special guest of Democratic Rep. Barbara Lee at President Obama’s final State of the Union address.
In February 2016, President Obama welcomed BLM leaders DeRay McKesson and Brittany Packnett to a Black History Month event at the White House. In the course of his remarks, Obama lauded the BLMers for their “outstanding work” which was “making history as we speak” and would eventually “take America to new heights.”
On July 10, 2016, President Obama likened BLM to the abolition, suffrage, civil rights, and other landmark movements of yesteryear, saying: “The abolition movement was contentious. The effort for women to get the right to vote was contentious and messy. There were times when activists might have engaged in rhetoric that was overheated and occasionally counterproductive. But the point was to raise issues so that we, as a society, could grapple with it. The same was true with the Civil Rights Movement, the union movement, the environmental movement, the antiwar movement during Vietnam. And I think what you’re seeing now is part of that longstanding tradition.”
On July 13, 2016—six days after a BLM supporter in Dallas had shot and killed five police officers and wounded seven others—President Obama hosted BLM leaders DeRay Mckesson, Brittany Packnett, and Mica Grimm at a four-and-a-half-hour meeting at the White House. Also invited were such notables as Al Sharpton and Attorney General Loretta Lynch.
BLM’s Anti-Israel, Anti-Semitic Orientation
In January 2015, BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors joined other likeminded activists in a ten-day trip to the Palestinian Territories of the West Bank. Their objective was to publicly draw a parallel between what they defined as Israeli oppression of Palestinians in the Middle East, and police violence against blacks in the United States.
In August 2015, Cullors was one of more than 1,000 black activists to sign a statement proclaiming their “solidarity with the Palestinian struggle and commitment to the liberation of Palestine’s land and people”; demanding an end to Israel’s “occupation” of “Palestine”; condemning the Jewish state’s “brutal war on Gaza and chokehold on the West Bank”; denouncing Israel’s “injustice and cruelty toward Palestinians”; imprecating the “colonialism and apartheid” that provided a forum for Israeli “ethnic cleansing, land theft, and the denial of Palestinian humanity and sovereignty”; and urging the U.S. government to cut off all aid to Israel. The statement also “wholeheartedly endors[ed]” the Boycott, Divestment, & Sanctions (BDS) movement, a Hamas-inspired initiative that aims to use various forms of public protest, economic pressure, and court rulings to permanently destroy Israel as a Jewish nation-state.
BLM has publicly defended Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, one of the most outspoken, unrestrained Jew-haters in living memory. With a long, well-documented history of venom-laced references to the “white devils” and Jewish “bloodsuckers” who purportedly torment America’s black community from coast to coast, Farrakhan has referred to Judaism as a “gutter religion” and to Adolf Hitler as “a very great man.” In March 2018, Republican Congressman Todd Rokita introduced a resolution calling on the House of Representatives to condemn Farrakhan for his then-recent assertion that: “White folks are going down. And Satan is going down. And Farrakhan, by God’s grace, has pulled the cover off of that Satanic Jew and I’m here to say your time is up, your world is through.” BLM vocally opposed Rokita’s resolution, along with such organizations as the New Black Panther Party and Al Sharpton’s National Action Network.
Over the Shavuot festival on May 30, 2020, BLM members carried out a pogrom in Fairfax, a Los Angeles community largely populated by ultra-orthodox Jews. The BLMers not only vandalized five synagogues and three Jewish schools in Fairfax, but also looted most of the Jewish businesses along the main avenue. Moreover, they chanted “Fuck the police and kill the Jews.”
At a July 1, 2020 demonstration in Washington, D.C.—an event that was billed as a rally supporting the Palestinian Authority’s “Day of Rage” activities against Israel thousands of miles away—BLM protesters repeatedly emphasized that the Palestinian movement is “intrinsically tied to Black Lives Matter.” Chants alternated between “Black lives matter!” and “Palestinian lives matter!” Another popular chant was: “Israel, we know you, you murder children, too.”
At a separate BLM rally of several hundred people in Brooklyn that same day:
Dequi Kioni Sadiki, the wife of former Black Panther Sekou Odinga, said: “The European Jews who occupy, slaughter and continue to force millions of Palestinians onto their killing fields called refugee and concentration camps, are the relatives of the Europeans … who kidnapped, slaughtered and forced millions of Africans and indigenous” peoples into slavery.
Activist Nerdeen Kiswani, who co-organized the rally, said: “The land that Israel exists on is still stolen. The 1948 lands are still stolen—Jaffa, Haifa, Tel Aviv … was stolen. We don’t want to go just back to our homes in Gaza and the West Bank. We want all of it. We don’t want a fake Palestinian state that they give us while Israel still exists.”
BLM’s Support for Fidel Castro
Shortly after former Cuban dictator Fidel Castro died on November 25, 2016, BLM published an article titled “Lessons from Fidel: Black Lives Matter and the Transition of El Comandante.” Lamenting that “a world without Fidel Castro” would leave many people feeling an “overwhelming sense of loss, complicated by fear and anxiety,” the piece stated that “the lessons that we take from Fidel” could help the bereaved to press forward and “build a world rooted in a vision of freedom and the peace that only comes with justice.
The article also praised Castro for having taught people “that to be a revolutionary, you must strive to live in integrity.” “As a Black network committed to transformation,” BLM added, “we are particularly grateful to Fidel for holding [the fugitive cop-killer] Mama Assata Shakur, who continues to inspire us. We are thankful that he provided a home for [cop killers/airplane hijackers] Brother Michael Finney, Ralph Goodwin, and Charles Hill[;] asylum to [former Black Panther] Brother Huey P. Newton[;] and sanctuary for so many other Black revolutionaries who were being persecuted by the American government during the Black Power era.” The piece closed by stating: “As Fidel ascends to the realm of the ancestors, we summon his guidance, strength, and power as we recommit ourselves to the struggle for universal freedom. Fidel Vive!”
Influencing America’s Public Schools
In 2016, BLM took steps to move beyond street protests and began to establish a growing influence in America’s public schools. In October of that year, teachers in Seattle organized a “Black Lives Matter at School Day.” When the National Education Association subsequently adopted a resolution endorsing that measure, “BLM at School Day” was expanded into a full “BLM at School National Week of Action,” to be held annually during the first week of February as part of Black History Month activities. In 2018, school districts in more than 20 major cities incorporated “BLM at School Week” into their curricula.
A key resource for BLM-related lessons is a textbook titled Teaching for Black Lives, whose opening sentence reads: “Black students’ minds and bodies are under attack.” The book is replete with narratives designed to imbue black students with fear, anger, and resentment vis-à-vis “the continuing police murders of black people” whose “lives are meaningless to the American Empire.” The book also includes essays bearing such titles as: “Rethinking Islamophobia: Combating Bigotry by Raising the Voices of Black Muslims”; “Plotting Inequalities, Building Resistance”; and “Racial Justice Is Not a Choice: White Supremacy, High-Stakes Testing, and the Punishment of Black and Brown Students.”
By 2019, “Black Lives Matter at School Week” was being observed by thousands of educators in public school districts across the United States.
Even very young schoolchildren are targeted with BLM propaganda in many classrooms. An early childhood teacher’s guide, for instance, emphasizes the importance of using “age-appropriate language” to help youngsters understand various concepts that are central to BLM’s philosophy. For example, teachers are urged to cultivate “transgender affirming” students by telling them: “Everybody has the right to choose their own gender by listening to their own heart and mind. Everyone gets to choose if they are a girl or a boy or both or neither or something else, and no one else gets to choose for them.” And to promote what the guide calls “the disruption of Western nuclear family dynamics and a return to the ‘collective village’ that takes care of each other,” teachers are instructed to say: “There are lots of different kinds of families; what makes a family is that it’s people who take care of each other; those people might be related, or maybe they choose to be family together and to take care of each other. Sometimes, when it’s lots of families together, it can be called a village.”
Funding for BLM
Since 2016, Black Lives Matter—which also goes by the name “Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation”—has been a fiscally sponsored project of Thousand Currents, a left-wing, California-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. As Robert Stilson of the Capital Research Center explains, this “fiscal sponsorship” arrangement means that BLM “does not have its own IRS tax-exempt status but is operating as a ‘project’ of an organization [Thousand Currents] that does.” As a result, BLM is legally permitted to receive tax-deductible donations. In 2018 and 2019, respectively, Thousand Currents funneled $2,622,017 and $3,354,654 in donor-restricted assets to BLM. Among the philanthropic organizations that have specifically earmarked contributions to Thousand Currents for BLM are the NoVo Foundation ($1,525,000 from 2015 to 2018), the W.K. Kellogg Foundation ($900,000 from 2016 to 2019), and Borealis Philanthropy ($343,000 from 2016 to 2018).
The governing board of Thousand Currents includes Susan Rosenberg, who in the 1970s and ’80s was a Marxist terrorist affiliated with the notorious and violent May 19th Communist Organization. When she was sentenced to prison in the 1980s for terrorist crimes of which she had been convicted, Rosenberg exhorted her ideological comrades to join her in “rededicat[ing] ourselves to our revolutionary principles, to our commitment to continue to fight for the defeat of U.S. imperialism.”
By no means does Thousand Currents represent the only avenue by which donors can support BLM. For example, when people seek to contribute money to the movement via the BLM website, they are transported to the web page of ActBlue Charities, an organization that facilitates donations to “democrats and progressives.” As of May 21, 2020, ActBlue had given $119 million to the presidential campaign of Democrat Joe Biden. The worldwide BLM protests that subsequently erupted in response to a May 25 incident where a black criminal suspect named George Floyd died after being physically mistreated by a white police officer in Minneapolis, sparked a new surge of donations to BLM via ActBlue.
The fact that ActBlue is a major fundraiser that focuses so heavily on supporting the Democratic Party—coupled with the fact that BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors candidly stated in a 2020 interview that BLM’s goal “is to get [President] Trump out” of office—has led to much speculation that donations to BLM may end up in the coffers of the Democratic National Committee and its political candidates. As bestselling author F. William Engdahl wrote on June 16, 2020: “Now major corporations such as Apple, Disney, Nike and hundreds [of] others may be pouring untold and unaccounted millions into ActBlue under the name of Black Lives Matter, funds that in fact can go to fund the election of a Democrat President Biden.”
Another major contributor to BLM is the multi-billionaire financier George Soros. Through his Open Society Foundations (OSF), Soros in 2014 gave at least $33 million to support already-established pro-BLM groups that, as The Washington Times wrote, “emboldened the grass-roots, on-the-ground activists in Ferguson” after the death of Michael Brown. “The financial tether from Mr. Soros to the activist groups gave rise to a combustible protest movement that transformed a one-day criminal event in Missouri into a 24-hour-a-day national cause celebre,” said the Times. 2015 brought more of the same, as Soros’s OSF gave $650,000 to “groups at the core of the burgeoning #BlackLivesMatter movement.”
In the summer of 2016, the Ford Foundation and Borealis Philanthropy announced the formation of the Black-Led Movement Fund (BLMF), a six-year pooled donor campaign whose goal was to raise $100 million for the BLM-affiliated Movement For Black Lives coalition. Said the Ford Foundation: “The Movement For Black Lives has forged a new national conversation about the intractable legacy of racism, state violence, and state neglect of black communities in the United States.” The Kellogg Foundation and George Soros’s Open Society Foundations also played key roles in helping this new BLMF initiative get off the ground.
On July 13, 2020, the Open Society Foundations, in support of BLM and its allies, pledged to donate $220 million to programs designed to help “build power in Black communities, promote bold new anti-racist policies in U.S. cities, and help first-time activists stay engaged.” The pledge earmarked $150 million in five-year grants for black-led “racial justice” organizations, and $70 million for a range of initiatives such as helping city governments reform policing and criminal justice by “moving beyond the culture of criminalization and incarceration.” “This is the time for urgent and bold action to address racial injustice in America,” said OSF deputy chair Alex Soros, the son of George Soros. “These investments will empower proven leaders in the Black community to reimagine policing, end mass incarceration, and eliminate the barriers to opportunity that have been the source of inequity for too long.”
Another notable supporter of BLM is the Democracy Alliance, which serves as a funding clearinghouse through which left-wing millionaires and billionaires can funnel enormous sums of money to their favored organizations.
BLM has also received significant backing from Shining the Light Advisors (SLA), a partnership created jointly by the United Way, the A&E television network, and iHeartMedia. SLA is a committee of “nationally known experts and leaders in racial and social justice” that oversees grant disbursements. Among the more noteworthy individuals who have served as advisors to SLA are Van Jones, the communist who once served as President Obama’s “green jobs czar,” and the veteran activist Rinku Sen, who strongly supported the notoriously corrupt, pro-socialist, now-defunct organization ACORN.
In addition, a multitude of major corporations have contributed very large amounts of money to BLM. These include such notables as: 23 and Me, Airbnb, Amazon, Apple, Bad Robot Productions, Cisco, Disney, Door Dash, Dropbox, Etsy, Fitbit, Gatorade, Hourglass Cosmetics, Intel, Microsoft, Nabisco, Nike, Pokemon Company, Savage X Fenty, Scopely, Skillshare, Spanx, Square Enix, Thatgamecompany, Tinder, Ubisoft, and Unilever.
BLM and the George Floyd Riots and Protests
In the aftermath of the May 25, 2020 death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, many U.S. cities were overrun by violent riots in which supporters of BLM and Antifa—the latter of which is a revolutionary Marxist/anarchist militia movement that seeks to bring down the United States by means of violence and intimidation—played a major role. By June 3, at least 200 cities had imposed nighttime curfews in an effort to quell the mayhem, while more than 30 states had activated some 62,000 National Guard personnel to help restore order.
By June 8, two police officers had been killed in the nationwide riots, while another 700+ officers in 25 states had been injured. In addition, 60 Secret Service agents and 40 U.S. Park Police had also sustained injuries. Fifteen civilians had died in the riots as well.
In early June of 2020, BLM’s New York chairman Hawk Newsome declared: “We pattern ourselves after the Black Panthers, after the Nation of Islam, we believe that we need an arm [firearm] to defend ourselves” against police depredations. Lauding the rioters who were tearing apart so many cities from coast to coast, he added: “People want to destroy because they’re angry and they’re frustrated. They want to go out and grab all those things that America told them that they should have, but they couldn’t have.”
By June 30, at least 14,000 protesters and rioters in 49 separate cities had been arrested. Many of them had attempted to desecrate and/or topple a wide array of federal monuments, memorials, and statues. It is estimated that as of July 3, somewhere between 15 million and 26 million people had participated in the various demonstrations from coast to coast, prompting The New York Times to run a headline that read: “Black Lives Matter May Be the Largest Movement in U.S. History.”
By the beginning of July 2020, the so-called George Floyd riots were projected to become—in terms of losses due to theft, fire, vandalism, and other forms of destruction—the costliest sustained acts of civil disorder in American history. The previous high was the $1.4 billion worth of damage (in 2020 dollars) that had resulted from the 1992 Los Angeles riots.
Borrowing the Occupy Movement’s Tactics
In early June of 2020, a mob led by activists from BLM and Antifa took over the East Precinct of the Seattle Police Department (SPD). They characterized the department as a “terrorist cell,” threatened to burn it down, and finally renamed it the “Seattle People Department.” The mob also occupied Seattle City Hall and announced the establishment of a “liberated” area called CHAZ (an acronym for Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone), which soon thereafter was renamed CHOP (Capitol Hill Organized Protest). Drawing a parallel between CHOP and the Occupy encampments of 2011, which likewise had been hostile to capitalism and traditional American values, one Seattle observer described the scene at CHOP as follows: “They bar media from entering and screen people coming in. They are walking around fully armed. Talking about making their own currency and making their own flag…. This is just like the Occupy movement. Soon we will have feces and drugs everywhere and people getting assaulted and raped in the encampments.”
Shortly after setting up the CHAZ/CHOP encampment, the radical occupiers issued a series of ultimatums entitled “The Demands of the Collective Black Voices at Free Capitol Hill to the Government of Seattle, Washington.” Among their demands were: (a) the “abolition” of the Seattle Police Department and the elimination of “100 percent” of its funding; (b) “a retrial of all People [of] Color currently serving a prison sentence for violent crime, by a jury of their [nonwhite] peers in their community”; (c) “the abolition of imprisonment,” especially “youth prisons and privately-owned, for-profit prisons”; (d) “free college for the people of the state of Washington … as a form of reparations for the treatment of Black people in this state and country”; and (e) a requirement that “the hospitals and care facilities of Seattle employ black doctors and nurses specifically to help care for black patients.”
Much like the Occupy encampments of 2011, CHOP quickly degenerated into a filthy pigsty replete with graffiti, decaying garbage, drug and alcohol abuse, and violent crime. Finally, on July 1, 2020, Seattle’s Democrat mayor, Jenny Durkan—who initially had hailed CHOP as a place whose “block party atmosphere” heralded a potential “summer of love”—issued an executive order designating the encampment as an unlawful assembly, and it was dismantled by police.
America’s Popular Culture Embraces BLM
As the George Floyd protests and riots gained momentum in the spring and summer of 2020, a large number of celebrities in the fields of sports, the arts, fashion, and entertainment publicly announced their unwavering support for BLM. Former baseball star Alex Rodriguez and actress Jennifer Lopez, for instance, participated together in a BLM rally in Los Angeles carrying homemade signs that read, “#EnoughIsEnough” and “Let’s Get Loud for Black Lives Matter.” On Instagram, Rodriguez lamented “the senseless way George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis and … the many brutal, unnecessary, ugly murders that came before him.” Other luminaries who likewise stood in solidarity with BLM included Beyoncé, Jane Fonda, Madonna, Trevor Noah, Rihanna, Keke Palmer, Jamie Foxx, Adam Lambert, Gigi and Bella Hadid, Ariana Grande, Harry Styles, Blake Lively, Ryan Reynolds, Drake, Doutzen Kroes, Imaan Hammam, Jaz Sinclair, Ross Lynch, Joe Jonas, and Sophie Turner.
The extent to which BLM’s message had captured the heart and mind of America’s popular culture was on full display in July of 2020, when Major League Baseball announced that its teams would be permitted to stencil “BLM” or “United for Change” on the back of the pitching mounds in each of their respective stadiums. Players would also have the option to wear either of those same slogans on t-shirts, wristbands, or patches affixed to their uniforms.
While Major League Baseball was preparing to implement the measures described in the preceding paragraph, the National Basketball Association announced that it would paint the words “Black Lives Matter” on all the courts that would be used for its upcoming games. Moreover, the league and its players’ union agreed on an array of “social justice messages” which the athletes could wear, instead of their names, on the backs of their jerseys. In addition to “Black Lives Matter,” the approved slogans included:
some that emphasized black victimization: “I Can’t Breathe” (words spoken by Eric Garner and George Floyd during their altercations with police); “Say Their Names” (a reference to the names of blacks killed by police); “Say Her Name” (the names of females killed by police); “Enough”; and “How Many More?”
some that represented pleas for the type of respect that African Americans were purportedly being denied: “See Us”; “Hear Us”; “Respect Us”; “Love Us”; “Anti-Racist”; and “Justice Now”
some that urged political activism: “Vote” (for Democrats); “Liberation”; and “Si Se Puede” (Spanish for “Yes We Can,” a slogan with a long history as a rallying cry for Latino leftists)
some with pro-socialist themes: “Power to the People” (a slogan rooted in the radical, anti-establishment politics of the 1960s); and “Group Economics” (a term connoting either a conscious decision to support black-owned businesses in particular, or an increased redistribution of wealth as a means of uplifting the large “group” of America’s poor)
“The Ferguson Effect” All Over Again
During the spring and summer of 2020, BLM’s police-hating rhetoric, coupled with the violence of the George Floyd riots, led to a resurrection of the so-called “Ferguson Effect” cited earlier. Manhattan Institute scholar Heather Mac Donald dubbed it alternately the “Ferguson Effect 2.0” and the “Minneapolis Effect,” in light of the fact that the latest round of anti-police riots had started in Minneapolis. Specifically, political leaders nationwide reacted fearfully to BLM’s tactics and began to pledge a variety of police reform and defunding measures as gestures of appeasement. Meanwhile, law-enforcement officers—worried that their lives and reputations could be permanently destroyed at any moment by frivolous charges of racism—became highly reluctant to engage criminal suspects except where absolutely necessary. The result was a massive increase in violent crime and homicide throughout urban America. Consider, for instance, the case of Chicago:
On Sunday, May 31, 2020, eighteen homicides were committed in Chicago, breaking the city’s previous one-day record of thirteen, set 29 years earlier. In fact, over the course of that same weekend as a whole, Chicago police responded to at least 73 incidents in which 92 people were shot, including 27 who died as a result. “We’ve never seen anything like it at all,” said Max Kapustin, the senior research director at the University of Chicago Crime Lab. “I don’t even know how to put it into context. It’s beyond anything that we’ve ever seen before.”
In another astonishing wave of gunfire during Father’s Day weekend, June 19-21, Chicago saw more than 100 people shot—14 of them fatally.
During the last weekend of June, 63 people were shot in Chicago, 16 of them fatally.
On July 21, Chicago Fraternal Order of Police president John Catanzara lamented that the city was experiencing a veritable “bloodbath in the street.”
New York City was likewise turned into a cauldron of violence by BLM hatred:
In a 28-day period from mid-May through mid-June of 2020, the incidence of murder, burglary and grand larceny auto crimes in New York spiked dramatically when compared to the same period in 2019. Particularly alarming was the homicide count—38 murders in 28 days—a total twice as high as the corresponding figure from the year before.
From June 16-22, the number of shootings in New York City increased by some 358% compared with the same time frame in 2019.
Between June 15 and July 2, shootings in New York City soared by 205% above the corresponding figure for the same period in 2019, while gunshot injuries increased by 238%. All told, June 2020 became New York’s bloodiest month in 24 years.
The NYPD’s Chief of Department, Terence Monahan, blamed these trends largely on the fact that “the animosity towards police has been absolutely unbelievable.” “The violence, the shootings are up,” he said. “We haven’t seen this many [during a comparable time period] since 1996.” One dispirited police officer described the situation as “complete lawlessness.”
And because the administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio was highly sympathetic to the protesters and rioters—as evidenced by de Blasio’s fulfillment of a BLM demand calling for a $1 billion cut to the NYPD’s annual budget—many New York City officers decided that it was time to get out while they could. During the 30-day period from May 25 through June 24, 2020, no fewer than 272 uniformed NYPD cops announced that they were retiring—a 49% increase over the 183 officers who had filed for retirement during the same period in 2019.
The atmosphere in Milwaukee was equally grim. According to Milwaukee inspector Leslie Thiele: “Our homicides are way up. We haven’t seen these numbers since 1991. We have 86 homicides this year, compared to 37 to this point last year—so we have a 132% increase.” Thiele’s fellow Milwaukee inspector Terrence Gordon said: “Morale [among police] is terrible…. [I]t’s because they’re afraid that nobody in this community is going to stand up for them. In 25 years, I’ve never seen it like this.”
The hearts of police officers were likewise torn asunder in Washington, D.C., as evidenced by the fact that in a June 2020 press release, the city’s Metropolitan Police Union reported that 71% of the members it surveyed were considering leaving the department. Of those, nearly 40% were planning to leave law enforcement entirely.
On July 21, 2020, The New York Times reported that nearly 200 officers in Minneapolis—roughly one-fifth of the city’s police force—had officially filed paperwork to leave their jobs, citing post-traumatic stress. “It’s almost like a nuclear bomb hit the city, and the people who didn’t perish are standing around,” said veteran officer Rich Walker Sr. regarding the department’s low morale. “I’m still surprised that we’ve got cops showing up to work, to be honest.”
Meanwhile, there were strong signals that Democrat-run cities from coast to coast were in danger of losing vast numbers of residents, and that their respective tax bases would soon be fleeing to safer environs. For instance, the Minneapolis manufacturing company 7-Sigma, Inc.—one of 400+ local businesses that were heavily damaged during the George Floyd riots—announced in early June that it would be moving, as quickly as possible, out of the city where it had been headquartered since 1987. Other Minneapolis businesses said that they full intended to follow suit.
Black Lives Matter’s name is a carefully crafted deception, designed to draw attention away from the fact that BLM is a hardcore Marxist movement whose overriding mission is to raze American society and its traditions to the ground, and to erect a Communist utopia upon those ruins. Toward that end, BLM works tirelessly to discredit the United States as an irredeemably racist wasteland founded upon nothing but slavery, genocide, and all manner of oppression.
It is immensely significant that BLM’s principal heroine is Assata Shakur, the Marxist revolutionary and former Black Panther who brutally murdered a New Jersey state trooper in the 1970s and has spent the past 41 years as a fugitive protected by Communist Cuba. It is equally noteworthy that the late totalitarian dictator of that island nation, Fidel Castro, is yet another revered figure in the pantheon of BLM icons.
A number of BLM’s demands are very clearly modeled on elements of the famous “Ten-Point Program” put forth by the murderous Black Panther Party in the 1960s. These include such overtly socialist and racialist agenda items as the guarantee of taxpayer-funded housing, education (through the college level), and “living-wage employment” for all black people.
BLM openly rejects “the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure,” advocating instead the socialist ideal of “villages” serving as “extended families” that “collectively care for one another.” In other words, BLM repudiates the singular value that, if it were to be embraced, would offer black Americans the principal tools they need in order to create for themselves a prosperous and fulfilling life.
BLM is infested with Jew-hating anti-Semites who falsely accuse Israel of such abominations as “colonialism,” “apartheid,” “ethnic cleansing,” “land theft,” and “the denial of Palestinian humanity.” It also supports the Boycott, Divestment, & Sanctions (BDS) movement, a Hamas-inspired initiative that aims to use various forms of public protest, economic pressure, and court rulings to permanently destroy Israel as a Jewish nation-state.
BLM’s anti-police rhetoric and violent activities have had devastating consequences for black Americans as a whole. In the aftermath of protracted BLM protest/riot campaigns in 2015 and again in 2020, for example, police officers in many U.S. cities—fearful of having their lives and reputations permanently destroyed by frivolous charges of racism—became highly reluctant to engage criminal suspects except in cases where absolutely necessary. As a result, the incidence of homicide and other violent crimes skyrocketed across urban America. And the vast majority of both the victims and perpetrators of such crimes were black.
The only black lives that matter to BLM are the infinitesimally small number that are ended by the actions of white people, particularly white police officers. Meanwhile, the thousands of blacks whose lives are terminated by black killers each and every year are never mentioned by BLM—no matter how brutally, mercilessly, or senselessly those lives may have been snuffed out.
It is indeed a tragedy that a movement so evil and so ruinous has been able, with the help of a compliant mainstream news media, to dupe millions of Americans into embracing it as a crusade for “racial justice.” In reality, BLM is the very embodiment of Marxism, anti-Semitism, and racism—a trifecta of wickedness capable of destroying any society.