As someone who feels a moral, religious and human responsibility to not remain silent on matters of social justice (especially in regards to the dignity of life), what hashtag am I supposed to stand on in the midst of the world events today? The enraging injustice of George Floyd has stirred up a demand for awareness of the continued presence of racism in our society. The Black Lives Matter movement ( #BLM #BlackLivesMatter ) is like the silent voice for the traveler in the parable of the Good Samaritan, calling out to bring our attention to the man left to die in the road. Some argue that this traveler represents the sinner that Jesus will show mercy on. This seems to be like the voices who see victims like George Floyd or Brionna Taylor as synonymous with the same issues causing the looting and dangerous riots. In response, we also now have #AllLivesMatter to counter a blanketed perception of extreme actions instigated by a few. So now this means that by recognizing the value and dignity of black lives, I am somehow denouncing all other lives…?
Just for a moment, let’s run with this logic. If choosing to be attentive to the needs of one somehow means I am neglecting the needs of another, then no area of injustice can be identified and fought for individually. This means, you cannot fight for the right to life for babies, because there are other babies that are already born who face abusive and life threatening environments too. Does that mean their lives aren’t important. If I think that an infant life holds the same worth and rights before birth as a human does after birth, then there should be no need to only focus on babies pre-birth (based on the above logic). So the #ProLife movement should then be inclusive of ALL babies; well actually, we shouldn’t isolate babies because #AllChildrensLivesMatter … wait does that exclude awkward middle schoolers and attitude-filled teenagers… so I guess it should be #AllYouthLivesMatter … So now we are age discriminating, which is I guess leads us back to #AllLivesMatter. But no more pro-life march by the thousands every year… those signs should not just be fighting for babies because isolating to just babies means we are saying other children and people’s lives don’t matter…Is that not the same logic..?
Ok, I know how ridiculous that sounds and I do not mean to come across as insensitive. I personally believe that every life should have the right to be born, but then I also believe that a life does NOT become less worthy of fighting for its individual injustices after it is born. If all lives truly matter, then we would see the incredible importance of fighting specifically for infant life, just as much as fighting specifically for the black life, and LGBTQ life, and Police life, and incarcerated life, and immigrant life and the life on death row. The brokenness in this world is not because of groups trying to shed some light on a specific area of human injustice or suffering. It is because, if Jesus was the one laying beaten for dead on the side of the road, we wouldn’t all value his life as we might think we would. Jesus’s life is being crucified again today, right in front of us. He is lying on the side of the road, just like the parable. However, we are either the priest, Levite or the Samaritan; Some walk by and see George Floyd who they assess deserved to die OR that his life shouldn’t be so publicly mourned since others face injustice also; some would walk by and see a baby hindering a woman’s right to choose how she wants to live so she has a right to end it’s life, and some would walk by and see the face of Jesus, not assessed against the backdrop of world events or political persuasion, but with different parts of His body suffering in different ways with each part needing unique attention and healing… Who do you see in each face today?
Until we can learn that #BLM and #ProLife and #BlueLivesMatter and all other unique areas of suffering are in fact ALL UNIQUE ASPECTS OF #ALLLIVESMATTER , we will never be the Good Samaritan that walks by and only sees Jesus, in the various Expositions of the Body of Christ.