Watch DeRay Mckesson give the perfect response to a CNN anchor's question about 'All Lives Matter'

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There are now plenty of explanations floating around that one can use to explain to someone why it's important to say "Black Lives Matter" instead of "All Lives Matter."


But as violence against the police escalates, some parts of the media have begun blaming the "Black Lives Matter," movement for the incidents, saying their slogan needs to be replaced with "All Lives Matter."

In an interview with CNN's Chris Cuomo, this weekend, activist DeRay Mckesson offered up what is perhaps the most succinct metaphor for explaining what it's like to hear "All Lives Matter" as a black person.

"I would never go to a breast cancer rally and yell out 'Colon cancer matters!'" he said.

Here's the clip of the exchange:

And the text:

Cuomo: What is your response to the idea that the hashtag shouldn't be "Black Lives Matter," it should be "All Lives Matter"?

Mckesson: It's an interesting thing where people are frustrated that black people are focusing on the unique trauma that black people are faced with in this country. And I would never go to a breast cancer rally and yell out 'Colon cancer matters!' And that's what people are doing here, they are frustrated by the fact that black people are focusing on the inequity and injustice specifically targeted to black people. We know that the way blackness has functioned in this country is unique, and we have to deal with that trauma in a different way. We also know that [by] focusing on black people that other people will also benefit when we get to equity and when we get to justice. So I think of "All Lives Matter" as a distraction technique that has probably been one of the most through-line distraction techniques of the movement, but it doesn't get us away from key issues at hand which is focusing on police violence and a world in which police don't kill people.

Mckesson went on to explain what exactly the movement is hoping to achieve: A change in the rules of engagement used by police when faced with a hostile situation, something President Obama himself has discussed.

"We have to think about a use-of-force standard that specifically targets the preservation of life," Mckesson said.


Watch the full interview here:

Rob covers business, economics and the environment for Fusion. He previously worked at Business Insider. He grew up in Chicago.