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Is it possible to support Black Lives Matter and support Blue Lives Matter? The prevailing wisdom is if you support the first you are against the second but is that really true? Some people have come to believe that BLM is an organization that promotes violence especially against police. It is neither an organization nor an advocate of violence. Black Lives Matter is a hashtag, it is a slogan, it is an idea, it is a rallying cry for people who want to stop the violence and discrimination that Black people in America suffer every day. There is no organization. There are people who organize protests and they carry Black Lives Matter posters. There is a “movement” of likeminded people of all races who want to see us all learn to care for and about each other.

The spark that ignited this movement came with the deaths of young black men at the hands of police, not all police, some police. The flames of the movement have flared with each subsequent killing. The call to defund police also became a rallying cry when police departments refused to acknowledge that a problem exists, when police unions refused to admit that a problem exists. If the “defund police” rallying cry gets the attention of police departments to begin to look at the culture of policing differently, then the effort has succeeded but so far, the opposite has been true. Police have become angry and defensive.

But, what if Blue Lives Matter and Black Lives Matter? Can’t we figure out a way to work together to improve the job of policing, make it less stressful, less dangerous, more community oriented and less “us vs them” oriented. Then maybe fewer people need to die. I support Black Lives Matter and I support Blue Lives Matter. I hope you will too.

Pamela Davies, Grantsburg