As they Black Lives Matter movement continues to call attention to police brutality and the deaths of black people at the hands of law enforcement, 2016 presidential campaigns are underway. According to Alicia Garza, a founder of the now-instrumental organization however, Black Lives Matter will not become synonymous with any candidate in particular.
“Black Lives Matter as a network will not, does not, has not, ain’t going to endorse any candidates,” Garza said, according to the New York Daily News. “Now if there are activists within the movement that want to do that independently, they should feel free and if that’s what makes sense for their local conditions, that’s fantastic. But as a network, that’s not work we’re engaged in yet.”
For the movement that has become more visible as more victims are brutalized and killed, Garza expressed that the collective was more concerned with actual accountability rather than candidates looking to capitalize on association. She also expressed that it was “too early in the genesis of the movement” to align with politicians, but that individual members of the organization were free to endorse whomever they chose.
“What we’ve seen is an attempt by mainstream politics and politicians to co-opt movements that galvanize people in order for them to move closer to their own goals and objectives,” she said. “We don’t think that playing a corrupt game is going to bring change and make black lives matter.”