“Black Lives Matter is a call of action and response to the anti-Black racism today in society” (Black Lives Matter). Black Lives Matter is a movement that “advocates for the dignity, justice and respect” for all African Americans (Black Lives Matter). Since the forming of the movement in July 2013, they have had a strong following base. As of today BLM has a following of 190 thousand on Twitter and 26 thousand on Instagram.
With their strong following and passionate followers the cause has a presence on several social media networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. A lot of the post tweeted on Twitter makes it to Instagram where people will have discussions or just inform their followers of what is going on in the community. For example, rappers The Game and Snoop Dogg teamed up on Instagram to form a march to the Los Angeles Police Department and have a conversation with the Chief Police officer on ways police officers can be active in the community so the minority communities can have a more positive view of the officers. They invited men of all minority races via Instagram to join them. “The mission is to reintroduce our community to the LAPD… just to get some understanding and dialogue,” Snoop Dogg said. “We’re the ones they’re going to be dealing with, we’re the ones that are going to be pulled over. … We’re here on peace….We don’t have to fear each other today,” said Snoop Dogg (Ben Posten, Joseph Serna, and Kate Mather, 2016).
This was a dialogue that needed to happen because for a lot of minorities in the area they have unpleasant experiences with the police, the only time there are in their community is to harass or profile them or arrest their family members and they have resentment towards them. The rapper posting about and their involvement in this movement makes another segment of African Americans aware of the issue and how they can improve or not hinder the movement. When I say hinder meaning they can get an understanding on why police officer act a certain way and their intention so that they know how to interact with them. It was surprising to me that gangsta rap artists would take the time to be conscious of the racial injustices happening on in the community and advocate for minorities in an effort to work with the police because in the rap game it is not necessarily cool or common for rapper to have a positive relationship to with law enforcement because most rappers have served some jail time for participating in illegal activities.
Another media platform that Black Lives Matter has a presence on is YouTube. YouTube is a video-sharing website. A lot of Black Lives Matter advocators and anti-Black Lives Matter advocators post and share videos about the movement. Some videos are original while some are videos from other sources re-uploaded, an example of that is BLM Mannequin Challenge which started on Twitter and made its way to Instagram. “The Mannequin Challenge is a viral Internet video trend where people remain frozen in action like mannequins while a video is recorded”(“Mannequin Challenge”). BLM took this challenge and used it to portray the scenes of police brutality cases that fuels their movement. Black Lives Matter doing this challenge appealed to the younger demographic; they took something teens were doing and put a message behind so they can be aware and conscious of what is going in society and how it could potentially affect them.
“About.” Black Lives Matter. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Nov. 2016.
Posten, Ben, Joseph Serna, and Kate Mather. “‘Respect Is Key’: The Game, Snoop Dogg Lead March to LAPD Headquarters, Meet with Chief Charlie Beck.” Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles Times, 8 July 2016. Web. 22 Nov. 2016.