Why 'All Buildings Matter' is Trending on 9/11 Anniversary

Twitter users are using the hashtag #AllBuildingsMatter on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks to make a point about the obtuseness or insensitivity of responding to the Black Lives Matter movement with the phrase "All Lives Matter." However, the hashtag is being criticized by many for being insensitive itself, or for diminishing the tragedy of the terrorist attacks.

The trend appears to have been started by a Black Lives Matter supporter who said: "9/11 is sad but let's remember that #AllBuildingsMatter," and in response to the attention the tweet received, then said: "obviously remember the innocent lives lost, but you get the point of this tweet..."

9/11 is sad but let’s remember that #AllBuildingsMatter ❤️ 🌃

— 🦋 (@tasmariee) September 11, 2020

Twitter user Zackary explained his reasoning behind the phrase: "#AllBuildingsMatter isn't about downplaying the tragedy of 9/11, it's an illustration of how 'All Lives Matter' downplays the severity of police brutality. It's not stooping to their level, it's showing them their own idiocy in terms even they can understand.

"9/11 was and is a horrible tragedy. Unarmed black people dying at the hands of police is a horrible tragedy. No one should attempt to trivialize either one."

9/11 was and is a horrible tragedy. Unarmed black people dying at the hands of police is a horrible tragedy. No one should attempt to trivialize either one.

— zackary (@zack69k) September 11, 2020

The point of the hashtag is apparently to highlight how the phrase "All Lives Matter" misses the point of the phrase "Black Lives Matter."

"Black Lives Matter" aims to draw attention to how Black people face systemic racism and are disproportionately subjected to police brutality. Supporters of the movement say the phrase does not suggest that non-Black lives do not matter, but instead draws attention to the issues that Black people face.

The phrase "#AllBuildingsMatter" began to trend after being repeated by a number of accounts. Bishop Talbert Swan, a pastor who has previously had his Twitter account suspended for "hateful conduct," used the hashtag to make reference to the Tulsa massacre of 1921.

"#NeverForget when white mobs of attacked Black residents and businesses of the Greenwood District (Black Wall St) in Tulsa, the worst incident of racial violence in American history. Hundreds of Black people were killed and 35 square blocks were destroyed. #AllBuildingsMatter," he posted.

Another Twitter user seemed to draw a comparison between how protestors have been blamed for being injured or how African Americans have been blamed for being killed and said: "Maybe if the buildings moved out the way or I dunno 'complied' they'd still be there."

Maybe if the buildings moved out the way or I dunno “complied” they’d still be there #AllBuildingsMatter https://t.co/gEOP9TTNIb

— Mani (@lovelyyimanii) September 8, 2020

The origins of the phrase "All Buildings Matter"

This is not the first time the phrase has been uttered to use the national tragedy of September 11 to attack those who criticize the semantics of "Black Lives Matter." Saturday Night Live comedian Michael Che used the phrase "All Buildings Matter" in his comedy show in 2016 to draw a comparison between why we should remember 9/11 and why systemic racism should be paid attention to.

In the show, Che questions why Black people are told to "get over" slavery and segregation but why the U.S. is told to "never forget" the September 11 attacks.

Did Michael Che end up getting his#AllBuildingsMatter T-shirt pic.twitter.com/VdIlMVvQWB

— Wale Gates (@walegates) September 11, 2020

Outrage over the phrase being used on 9/11

However, the phrase has been criticized for suggesting that the 9/11 memorials are reflecting on the loss of the World Trade Center as a building, rather than the people who died in the attacks, and for trivializing the tragedy.

A number of Republican election candidates spoke of their disgust with the phrase trending on Twitter.

Ohio congressional candidate Rob Weber said, "The hashtag #AllBuildingsMatter is trending on Twitter because radical left are SCUM who have no respect for America or the people who sacrifice for her."

California congressional candidate Lavern Spicer tweeted, "These are the most sick and demented statements I've ever seen. Anyone who promotes the #AllBuildingsMatter hashtag does not have any clue what they are doing and need serious mental help. Pure, unabashed evil."

While the hashtag is being blamed mostly on BLM supporters and liberals, even some BLM supporters are criticizing the "All Buildings Matter" phrase.

A Twitter user who goes by "Antifa: Warrior Princess," said: "#AllBuildingsMatter is a terrible idea, guys. I 100 percent get it, but [people] lost [people] that day. You are hurting [people] to prove to other [people] they are hurting another set of [people]. It doesn't work and plays into the hands of MAGA. Please rethink it."

9/11 Memorial Tribute in Light
The annual Tribute in Light is tested in the rain on the eve of the 19th anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center on September 10, 2020, in New York City. "All Buildings Matter" is trending on Twitter on the anniversary of 9/11 as a response to the critics of the Black Lives Matter movement. Gary Hershorn/Getty