Facebook, and its CEO Mark Zuckerberg, are once again, according to a report from the Daily Dot, showing their solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement as a huge sign reading “Black Lives Matter” has gone up right in the middle of their Menlo Park, California, headquarters in response to the recent shootings of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling, as well as the revenge killings of Dallas police officers Lorne Ahrens, Michael Krol, Michael J. Smith, Brent Thompson, and Patrick Zamarripa.
It’s not the first time that Facebook and Zuckerberg have spoken up in support of Black Lives Matter; as Fusion notes, Zuckerberg previously spoke out to condemn employees who were painting over Black Lives Matter graffiti at Facebook HQ with “All Lives Matter,” saying that “This was unacceptable… I was already very disappointed by this disrespectful behavior before, but after my communication I now consider this malicious as well.”
Zuckerberg also posted his own thoughts on recent events on Thursday, before the Dallas police shootings occurred, following the shooting of Philando Castile.
“Yesterday, a Minnesota woman named Diamond Reynolds went live on Facebook immediately after her fiancé, Philando Castile, had been shot by police in his car. Philando later died from his wounds. In the video, Diamond’s 4-year-old daughter is watching from the back seat.
“My heart goes out to the Castile family and all the other families who have experienced this kind of tragedy. My thoughts are also with all members of the Facebook community who are deeply troubled by these events.
“The images we’ve seen this week are graphic and heartbreaking, and they shine a light on the fear that millions of members of our community live with every day. While I hope we never have to see another video like Diamond’s, it reminds us why coming together to build a more open and connected world is so important — and how far we still have to go.”
Of course, that’s not what’s really interesting about the Black Lives Matter sign that went up at Facebook HQ.
As the Source reports, on close examination, the words on the sign are composed of the names of the countless victims of police violence against people of color in the United States — including Emmett Till, Trayvon Martin, Oscar Grant, Eric Garner, Oscar Grant, Michael Brown, Jordan Davis, Kimani Gray, Renisha McBride, Jonathan Ferrell, and Amadou Diallo.
Facebook isn’t the only tech giant to throw their hat into the ring; Google also made their own statement of solidarity on Thursday, posting it somewhat ironically on Twitter.
“We’re devastated by the senseless deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. Today Googlers held vigils in their memory, and in memory of all those like them whose lives have been cut short unfairly.
We stand in solidarity with the fight for racial justice.
Facebook has reportedly also put up Black Lives Matter posters in offices worldwide.
After Diamond Reynolds’ broadcast of fiancé Philando Castile, witnesses turned again to Facebook Live to broadcast the horrific events in Dallas — perhaps because nobody can silence Facebook if they don’t want to allow it. It is fair to say that, in the past, many unpleasant events have been swept under the rug, but in this new age, where everyone can be a reporter and tech giants like Facebook and Google are too big to gag, it is possible that justice might finally be realized.
Silicon Valley has been criticized a lot in the past for seeming uncaring about black Americans. Perhaps this is a sign that Silicon Valley is finally waking up to the fact that, yes, Black Lives Matter, and that they have a significant role to play in realizing that.
[Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images]