Our country currently finds itself in a place of calamitous turmoil. It is not a place it hasn’t been before, nor is it a place, I hate to say, it will not be again.

Every so often, resultant of current events, people take to the streets to let it be known their stance on the issue at hand. It is a great liberty in our country to have the right to do so, as long as those demonstrations remain peaceful. Thomas Jefferson once stated, “A little rebellion now and then is a good thing. It is a medicine necessary for the sound health of government.”

That is all well and good, until such action morphs into a scourge, threatening the lives and livelihood of innocent people who, the truth be known, may have initially sympathized with those leading the movement, whatever it may be. Those who birthed the cause will believe their efforts are profoundly necessary, but others, while believing in the cause, have to wonder how it got to such a state of turmoil. All good honest people will learn from such upheaval and use what is learned to better themselves, and thus our country. Others will not.

The current state I speak of is, of course, the Black Lives Matter Movement. Yes, Black lives matter, as do all lives. But, in the midst of our current situation, there are some hard questions that must be asked, and since no one wants to ask them, I have no option but to do so.

The questions then, to proffer those within the BLM movement are; If Black lives matter, as they do, why then are young Black males killed by young Black males every night throughout this country for simply wearing the wrong color clothing, “disrespecting” another or for some other trivial matter? And, why do you not direct more of your energy toward ending that atrocity, rather than continuing to, as many see it, incite the destruction of innocent peoples’ property and livelihood all across this country? Let me correct myself — in major cities across this country mostly under the charge of Democrat leaders? Not so? Then please inform me of which of cities being destroyed are under the charge of Republican leaders.

I believe the majority of those involved in the BLM movement have a true and honorable passion for their cause, but there are also those riding on their coattails that are doing so for the wrong reasons, and are working toward setting this country back 50 years in race relations. I have heard people in the BLM movement state that they do not condone what some are doing, in causing destruction and chaos. However, not condoning is not denouncing. For example; if I were to say I do not condone what some police officers may have done, resulting in the BLM movement, it would fall on deaf ears. But, were I to say I deplore what has taken place, I believe it would be heard, understood and accepted.

I implore all the good people who align themselves with the BLM movement to sternly and unequivocally denounce any and all violence and destruction of property that seems to plague their demonstrations and work toward ending it. Only then will you receive the due support and recognition necessary to achieve your goals.

Ernie Bentley is retired and worked in construction, regulatory compliance, property management, customer service and sales.