Image via rollingout.com
Wal-Mart has agreed to stop selling T-shirts on its website that bear the slogan “Bulletproof Black Lives Matter.” However, the store says it will continue to sell “Black Lives Matter” merchandise that does not contain the word “bulletproof.”
According to the Washington Post, the decision was prompted by complaints from Fraternal Order of Police president Chuck Canterbury. On Tuesday, Canterbury wrote to Wal-Mart CEO C. Douglas McMillon, saying that the merchandise was an attempt to profit off racial divisions.
“Commercializing our differences will not help our local police and communities to build greater respect for one another. Turning a buck on strained relationships will not contribute to the healing process,” Canterbury wrote.
CNN reports that the merchandise was not actually being sold by Wal-Mart, but by a third-party vendor, Old Glory Merchandise, on the store’s website. Old Glory owner Glenn Morell told CNN that he had decided to remove the “Bulletproof Black Lives Matter.” T-shirt from his store.
Old Glory Merchandise also offers shirts that contain the slogan “All Lives Matter,” “Blue Lives Matter,” and other pro-police merchandise along with the “Black Lives Matter” shirts.
This is the second time in as many years that the retailer has agreed to stop selling controversial, racially-charged merchandise. In June 2015, Wal-Mart agreed to stop selling merchandise that contained images of the Confederate flag.
Family Security Matters
On December 6 President Barack Obama defended his strategy for combating terrorism, a strategy – if one can call it that – based on restraint and withdrawal. Without mentioning Donald Trump’s name, the president went on to contrast his ideas with those enunciated by the president elect. He clearly attempted to make the case for why his successor should adhere to his approach.
That approach includes scaling back U.S. military presence abroad, a ban on torture and the closing of the detention facility in Guantanamo. President Obama referred to his approach as “smart policy” and noted with pride that “no foreign terrorist organization has successfully planned and executed an attack on our homeland, and it’s not because they didn’t try.” He argued, as well, for using diplomacy before military power, pointing to the Iran deal as the way to restrain a nuclear program.
While President Obama is keen on securing his legacy, the claims about “smart policy” are questionable. Alas, the scaling back of U.S. military presence has occurred with the precipitous withdrawal from Iraq, a symbol of misguided policy directives. The rise of ISIS is due in no small part to the departure of the U.S. military from the region. Similarly, the announcement that there will be a dramatic force reduction in Afghanistan on an announced date, led directly to enhanced field operations by the Taliban.