Protesters carry placards at a Black Lives Matter demonstration in New York City. (Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)
Protesters carry placards at a Black Lives Matter demonstration in New York City. (Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Following a recent poll that showed support for the Black Lives Matter Movement waning, conversations have commenced over the continued relevance of the campaign.

Researchers conducted by the national polling site, Civiqs revealed that 44 percent of Americans support the Black Lives Matter Movement, while 43 percent said they oppose the campaign.

Approximately 11 percent of respondents reported that they neither support nor oppose the campaign, which began in 2012 in response to a jury’s decision to acquit George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

The movement’s support appeared to peak in the wake of the police murder of George Floyd as global protests joined in the cry of “Black Lives Matter.”

Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation co-founder Patrisse Cullors resigned earlier this year following allegations she parlayed her part in the movement into a multimillion-dollar lifestyle that included purchasing several properties in various locations.

Shortly before Cullors’ resignation, the foundation released a 2020 Impact Report that claimed it had raised more than $90 million. Reportedly, 10 Black Lives Matter chapter leaders called for financial transparency and an independent investigation into spending funds. In addition, Ebony reported that the claims of “financial impropriety were a source of constant concern for several parents whose children had been killed by police in controversial shootings.”

Ebony cited Tamika Palmer, whose daughter Breonna Taylor was killed by Louisville police as she slept in her home, and Samaria Rice, whose 12-year-old son Tamir was killed on a playground by a Cleveland police officer.

Both parents have come out publicly and denounced the Black Lives Matter foundation and accused the organization of raising money off the blood of their children.

Michael Brown Sr., whose son Michael was walking home unarmed from a store and killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, called for Black Lives Matter to donate $20 million to nonprofit organizations in Ferguson working to empower residents in exchange for the millions of dollars they raised in using his son’s name and image.

Cullors has countered that all the financial purchases she has made have come from her income, including a multi-year television deal with Warner Brothers, a book deal, speaking engagements and consulting services.

To some, that didn’t sit well, and it’s just one reason they question the relevance of the campaign.

“The Black Lives Matter is not as relevant in many communities today as before,” said Marcos Martinez, the owner of the lifestyle blog Men Who Brunch.

“Police reform in New York City has decreased police activity in many poor urban communities. This has been problematic since more shootings and violent incidents have occurred in those poor communities of color,” Martinez remarked.

“I’m pro-Black. I want success for my people. I knew our challenges and had to overcome poverty, incarceration, ghettos and violence being from New York City and a Black male,” said Lazarus Jackson, editor-in-chief of the website Modern Home Safety.

“Black Lives Matter was a sham to me from day one. You can’t possibly lead a strong, lasting institution if the very people you claim to represent are not the actual founders or leaders,” he said.

“I watched on the news every night in Brooklyn where white people protested for George Floyd. In our community, it’s very rare to hear a person say they ever attended any of those events. For every 100 white protestors, only 15 were Black at best. Meanwhile, with almost 1000 gunshot victims that were Black during the same time period during the pandemic, you never see Black Lives Matter show up,” Jackson said.

Entertainer Tyrone Evans Clarke said during protests he participated in following Floyd’s murder, he noticed many individuals willing to make sacrifices for the cause. However, that changed.

“It seems the U.S. doesn’t respect Black and brown people’s lives,” Clarke said. “Cops were attacking peaceful protestors with tear gas and rubber bullets and that didn’t help. On top of that, look how long it took to put Floyd’s murderer behind bars. It feels like there is a knee on our necks every day just by being Black.”

Stacy M. Brown is a senior writer for The Washington Informer and the senior national correspondent for the Black Press of America. Stacy has more than 25 years of journalism experience and has authored...

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