Former Fox News personality and The Blaze founder Glenn Beck is calling on conservatives to "empathize" with the Black Lives Matter movement. In a New York Times op-ed published Wednesday, Beck said his thoughts on Black Lives Matter activists have "evolved" since hosting a controversial All Lives Matter rally in Alabama last year.
"We need to listen to one another, as human beings, and try to understand one another's pain," Beck said. "Empathy is not acknowledging or conceding that the pain and anger others feel is justified. Empathy is acknowledging someone else’s pain and anger while feeling for them as human beings—even, and maybe especially, when we don't necessarily agree or understand them."
Beck noted that his turning point came after watching an interview with the parents of the Dallas shooter Micah Johnson, who killed five police officers and injured multiple civilians during an ambush attack in July. "I was able to see their heartache and sorrow as parents, as Americans and as human beings," Beck said, noting that he also saw a lot of "hate" online.
Beck's change of heart comes just one year after he marched alongside some guy named Chuck Norris from Kelly Ingram Park to Birmingham City Hall, a route known for its place in civil rights history. "It's about taking our church out in the streets," Beck told the group, according to AL.com:
Now, Beck said he feels much differently. "We are a country in trouble, and we have only one way out: reconciliation," Beck said. "We must follow the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s message and method and move away from a pursuit of 'winning' and toward reclaiming our shared humanity."
Read Beck's full op-ed here.