Black Lives Matter (BLM): A Perspective from Liberation and Political Theologies
Keywords:Black Lives Matter (BLM), liberation, political, ethics, theology, praxis, memory, solidarity, Johann Baptist Metz, Gustavo Gutiérrez
Black Lives Matter (BLM) is a civil rights movement that rose as a natural response to the killing of unarmed young African-American persons by armed vigilantes and some law enforcement officers. BLM advocates for rights of people who are racial minorities in the United States of America and around the world. This article contextualizes BLM in the foundational principles of liberation and political theologies. The perspectives of contemporary political and liberation theologies are appropriated as a way to understand how civil rights movements such as BLM come into being in societies where there are rampant experiences of injustice, oppression, and systemic violence. This paper also correlates the concepts of memory and solidarity in political theology to factors leading to the rise of civil rights movements such as BLM. In addition, the paper views preferential option for the poor in liberation theology as a means for understanding BLM’s focus on the lives of racial minorities. In the process of bringing about transformative social praxis (action), the paper concludes by highlighting the necessity for holding difficult conversations in society regarding injustices and racism.