Blue Lives Matter… : Blinding Slogans, Dehumanization and Further Tragedy in Boone, North Carolina
Two officers/deputies approached a home last week. Inside, there was a man that had killed his parents. Before the day was out, all of them would be dead.
In the midst of great tragedy, people run to what they consider to be great answers. The problem is that such answers are often not so great and dehumanize all parties involved.
Blue Lives Matter. This language is not just incorrect. It’s bullshit.
Chris Ward and Logan Fox gave their lives to help their neighbor…not to glorify law enforcement. In smothering these guys in blue, we are minimizing their sacrifice…not enhancing it. These guys are humans…who attempted to love…isn’t that enough to mourn them? Do we have to lionize them with meaningless slogans…and colors? The greatest thing about Chris and Logan is that they were children of God and that is why their death should be mourned by all. It seems to me that we should learn to check on our neighbors so that folks like Chris and Logan don’t have to. If we had, maybe Chris and Logan would still be with us.
Those poor parents were just done in by a child they must have hated. This language is not just incorrect. It’s bullshit.
Michelle and George Ligon might be the greatest unsung heroes of this entire situation. Knowing that their son had major problems, they went down loving him. Is there any greater form of love? Desperately, trying to reach your child until the very end. Truly, in their hearts…the greatest of these was love. Can you imagine seeing the deathblow coming and choosing to forgive/love the perpetrator? Love is more than slogans…love is choosing to believe that love is enough.
That guy was just plain evil. This language is not just incorrect. It’s bullshit.
Isaac Barnes is just as much a victim of this situation as anyone else. He was a victim of deteriorating mental health. He was a victim of substance abuse. He was a victim of a community that was unable to reach him. He was a victim of reckless gun laws. Make no mistake…Isaac is a victim too. I doubt you will hear many slogans for him…but without learning to love Isaac…the community will continue to face many more tragedies like this.
The message of Jesus is about flipping the narrative in situations like this. In pointing to the least of these amongst us, Jesus encourages us to direct our hearts toward those for whom no slogans are being chanted. If we begin with Isaac, perhaps we will better learn how to love/mourn Chris, Logan, Michelle and George. But if we start with Blue Lives Matter…we will never get to Isaac and…in turn…will be stuck in a constant cycle of tragedy. Such sloganeering isn’t just rude or unhelpful…it is evil…for it erases the bodies of children of God…and any chance we might have for a better tomorrow.