argument top image

Will the Black Lives matter movement create lasting change?
Back to question

A backlash to the movement is inevitable

“There will be a backlash to these actions. ... That backlash may come at the ballot box, or it may come in some other indirect form. Some people aren’t interested in direct confrontation in the streets. They may simply prefer to express their opposition in a way that these protesters expect it least — businesses moving out, reluctance to hire, reluctance to visit a neighborhood, effectively abandoning a community.” — Jim Geraghty, National Review

The Argument

After George Floyd’s death, a wide range of protests burst out on streets and social media. Despite awareness of societal racial injustices, the protesters only take action when it is culturally popular. This time, the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement has taken the spotlight. However, the movement will not create lasting change. Indirect outcomes from the protests may begin to manifest over time. Public demonstrations on the streets and social media do not last long, but the social upheaval they cause can be destructive. Racial resentment may worsen, as the protests create looting and loss of property. The lack of civility and discussion on social media may also worsen racial tensions, with both sides talking past each other.[1] Moreover, superficial achievements confine the movement. During the process, unjust police officers received punishment; more white people joined and advocated for racial justice; “Black Lives Matter” became the national slogan. Some protesters may view these as an achievement, or they may lose the motivation to continue devoting the energy to the cause.[2]

Counter arguments

The BLM movement will make lasting change, with the issues reaching a wider audience. More white people began reflecting on their behaviors and thinking about their privilege.[3] The popularity and broad support for the movement allowed for substantive changes. Also, companies and organizations adopted policies to protect people of color and foster equity.[4] These changes cannot be retracted, considering the shift in the national debate over racial injustice. The Black Lives Matter movement has a broad impact. It is not just about black people, with other people of color involved in the fight for increased equity. The mass appeal of the movement, and its audible goals of limiting injustice, attests to its legitimacy.



Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Friday, 11 Sep 2020 at 06:13 UTC

Explore related arguments