In response to the 2013 acquittal of George Zimmerman in the killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, Black Lives Matter (BLM) was founded by Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi. It’s now comprised of 40 chapters globally, and continues to expand.
With the goal of intervening and campaigning against systemic racism and violence by law enforcement and vigilantes alike, Black Lives Matterf fights injustices against the black community in real time using social media to organize people to power. According to their website, BLM “is an affirmation of Black folks’ humanity, our contributions to this society, and our resilience in the face of deadly oppression.”
BLM first cemented national recognition by its part in orchestrating protests (and sometimes unrest) over the shooting death by police of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., and the chokehold death by police of Eric Garner in New York City. Both of these deaths occurred in 2014.
We’ve accomplished a lot in four short years. Ferguson helped to catalyze a movement to which we’ve all helped give life. Organizers who call this network home have ousted anti-Black politicians, won critical legislation to benefit Black lives, and changed the terms of the debate on Blackness around the world. Through movement and relationship building, we have also helped catalyze other movements and shifted culture with an eye toward the dangerous impacts of anti-Blackness.
These are the results of our collective efforts.
For more information about local chapters or actions, click here.