The sign outside the River Road Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Bethesda was vandalized to read "Lives Matter" instead of "Black Lives Matter." (Courtesy of the Rev. Nancy Ladd)

Regarding Petula Dvorak’s Aug. 7 Metro column “The ‘Black’ adds meaning to ‘Lives Matter’ ”:

Does one’s melanin level inherently increase or decrease one’s worth? Despite superficial biological differences, all lives do matter. How can artificially inserting any color — in this case “black” — add to a thing that is priceless to begin with? The “All Lives Matter” slogan is simple truth, a wholly inclusive statement. 

In this light, “Black Lives Matter” functions as subtle racism (implying that non-black lives somehow matter less). Indeed, it is nonsensical to try to stamp out racism with further dissension.

Ms. Dvorak is correct in one regard: Today’s racism is an ugly undercurrent. However, the only way to overcome it is to look beyond it by following President John F. Kennedy’s lead: “Our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.”

David L. Hunter, Germantown

There is a clear way to recognize that all lives have inherent worth and dignity but that the lives of African Americans were systematically devalued during slavery, and often today, to varying degrees, they still are.

Simply proclaim: “Black Lives Matter, Too.”

Dick Foster, Springfield