Black Lives Matter is run by Marxists. It despises the nuclear family and leaves in its wake more violence and destruction than justice or healing. But there is one particularly disturbing problem that no one seems willing to talk about: BLM chooses which lives matter–and which don’t.

As the political discourse continues to be dominated by headlines of violence and racial tensions, BLM is once again flaunting its “power” to determine which lives will be remembered and celebrated, and which will be forgotten and ignored.

Take, for example, the organization’s response to the recent police shooting in Columbus, Ohio.

After Officer Nicholas Reardon shot and killed sixteen-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant, BLM hurried to portray Bryant as a normal girl who unjustly fell prey to a systematically racist system of police brutality. But in their rush to shape the story into an anti-police narrative, the protestors and activists had no time to wait for the facts of the story. All they needed to know was that a white cop had killed a black girl; any further context was irrelevant.

As it turned it out, however, when examining the actions of Officer Reardon, context really does matter. Ma’Khia Bryant was armed with a knife. She was violently attacking another black girl. The officer’s actions quite possibly saved that other girl’s life. These important details matter.

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Bryant was not a victim of racist policing. As harsh as it may sound, she was a “victim” only to her own bad decisions. Bryant chose to attack that girl. She chose to swing that knife. She continued to do so even after the police had arrived. Officer Reardon can’t be blamed for that. But to the mob, he will never be seen as a hero who had no choice but to use lethal force in order to protect a black girl’s life. He will only ever be a symbol of systematic racism.

It’s heartbreaking that a sixteen-year-old girl was killed. It truly saddens me. But the cultural response to this tragedy has been yet another illustration of the woke mob’s sick penchant for getting to choose which lives matter. By carefully constructing the narrative of the Columbus shooting in overwhelming favor of Bryant and in harsh disapproval of the officer, BLM seems to suggest that Bryant’s life mattered more than the life of the girl she was attacking.

What if the police hadn’t shown up? What if that other girl had been killed? Would her life have mattered to BLM and its “very concerned” friends in the media? Of course not. There would be no protests in her honor. There would be no news stories gushing over how perfectly “normal” she was. No one would demand that we say her name.

This is more than a hypothetical possibility. BLM routinely ignores the deaths of black people if they can’t be used to advance a political narrative.

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Less than a week before Bryant’s death, for example, a seven-year-old black girl, Jaslyn Adams, was tragically shot to death while in a McDonald’s drive-thru. The horrific incident, which occurred in Chicago, received minimal news coverage. And as the police were not responsible for the shooting, BLM was completely silent. No protests. No social media posts. Not even a single mention on the official Black Lives Matter website. Jaslyn Adam’s death had no potential for furthering its cause, therefore the organization was more than fine with looking the other way.

Let’s compare the two scenarios, side by side. Two black girls were shot and killed. One was violently wielding a knife; the other was innocently waiting in line at McDonald’s. And while BLM has venerated the first, it has completely ignored the second.

Both of these precious lives mattered equally, but not to BLM.  

It’s past time to admit that political narratives matter more to BLM than black lives. Each and every soul on the face of this planet has intrinsic worth that cannot be reduced to his or her ability to advance a political agenda. Our value as humans comes from our being fearfully and wonderfully created in the image of God. We must stop granting BLM the privilege of taking that away.  

Jakob Fay is an intern with the Convention of States Project, a project of Citizens for Self-Governance.