Trayvon Martin Case: Why it Has EVERYTHING To Do With Race

Trayvon Martin Case: Why it Has EVERYTHING To Do With Race

As I sit in front of my computer, reading the Facebook comments left on 17 year-old Trayvon Martin's page, I start to cry. Cry for the life of a young boy lost, cry for the family and friends who now have to leave messages of fond memories on his profile, cry for the injustice that continues to plague our world. My tears are full of sadness, confusion and anger. I'm pissed off. Pissed off that another human being was killed; the privilege of having a long fulfilling life stripped away from him at such a young age. Trayvon Martin was gunned down by a lunatic whose name I don't even want to type because he is worthless to me, but for the sake of being as informative as possible, I shall.

On February 26th, 28 year-old neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman was patrolling the gated community of Twin Lakes in Sanford Florida. When he spotted an unarmed Trayvon Martin walking to his father's house from the convenience store, he called Sanford police and reported that a suspicious person was in the community. He told the dispatcher that he was following him and that he "looked like he was up to no good." The rest is history. Some time between the first phone call to authorities and their arrival, Trayvon lie dead 70 feet away from his father's town-home with Zimmerman claiming self defense. Sanford police charged him with nothing; arguing that there was no evidence to suggest otherwise.

Audio: 1 of 8 calls made to police during Trayvon's killing.

If you're not shocked at the fact that this guy is walking around free then you have no pulse. Let it had been a black person and the victim white, he would have been lynched right there in Sanford. What's more disturbing to me is one resident's claim that this incident isn't racially motivated. Ladonna Williams who is African American told the Associated Press that to her it's not "even a race issue, other than for the people involved...It's just about....to be able to take somebody's life in 2012 and not even go to jail for it, that is just sad. No matter for any color. Not just black or white. Any color." This quote is what really compelled me to write about this case.

We live in a world where many of us hope that one day race won't matter. One day there will be no discrimination and there can be one big happy rainbow of colors. Unfortunately today is not that day and no matter how much we try to say that it isn't about race, incidents such as the Trayvon Martin case keep proving otherwise. Yes Ladonna Williams had a point: no one should be able to kill someone regardless of color and not go to jail for it. But it's bigger than that and in many ways, applying this statement to the case of Trayvon Martin oversimplifies it. Let's take a look at some of the things that I believe contributed to this life being taken too soon.

Racially Charged Prejudices: A Breeding Ground for Preconceived Notions

According to reports, there was a series of break-ins happening in the small community. That was Zimmerman's reasoning for patrolling the neighborhood late that Sunday night. According to audio of Zimmerman's call to police, he stated that "This guy looks like he is up to no good. He is on drugs or something," He follows up by saying "These a-------. They always get away." In the language alone, there's the conclusion that Martin is already guilty. So no matter what he said or did Zimmerman was not only prepped to take action, but inevitably would take action. He assumed that because Trayvon was walking around "looking at all of the houses" that he was on drugs and that he was up to no good. There is no doubt in my mind that Zimmerman's ideas of young African American men on top of his need to be a hero...fueled his actions to continue to follow, confront and ultimately kill an innocent young boy.

White Man Saves the Day

Throughout modern history, there's been this constant subliminal message that whites save the day. They save us from illness. They save us from disaster. Hell they even save us from ourselves. It's evident throughout media and through the actions of everyday life. There are examples of this in films, books and real life ranging from The Birth of a Nation to more recently "KONY 2012." Relating this back to Zimmerman, by tracking down and killing Martin, in his mind he essentially "saved the day" by protecting the citizens of the Twin Lakes community from the "big black thieving crackhead."

The Role of Law Enforcement

Last time I checked, police were there to serve and protect. To bring a sense of objectivity to cases and provide both a sound, thorough investigation of all possibilities as well as fairness and justice for all. This was COMPLETELY absent in the case of Trayvon Martin. In fact, Sanford police did the opposite! They covered up for Zimmerman. Besides blatantly turning the other cheek, arguing that there is no evidence to suggest that the confrontation between Zimmerman and Martin was anything but self defense, Sanford police continued to absolve him of any responsibility, letting him walk away a free man. For weeks the Martin family has been pushing for the Sanford police to release the 911 calls that evening. One made by Zimmerman and not 1 or 2 but 7 others made by neighbors...where you can hear the pleas of Martin for his life. The evidence is there, but where is the follow up? Where is the arrest? Absent. The tapes were released today, finally after almost a month. Sanford Police response? That the 911 calls would prove the incident was not a case of racial profiling. That's what Sanford police chief Bill Lee told the Miami Herald. Yes Bill, that's what the focus should be...proving that the incident wasn't racially motivated, the fact that a young man is dead isn't important.

I'm one of those people that just wants the concept of race to disappear to a certain degree. I would like to one day, wake up to a world where we just see people as human beings. I'm also a realist...and the reality is that race will continue to be the elephant in the room because guess what? It's the elephant in the room. Unless we work to establish dialogues among people of different ethnic backgrounds with each other and provide a true place that is safe, welcoming and inviting no matter how "dumb" the thoughts or questions may be for stereotypes to be dispelled, we cannot expect anything to change. Race is in everything whether we want to acknowledge it or not. This is a prime example of how ignorance can result in catastrophe. Thoughts breed words. Words breed action. I don't have all of the answers, but I would definitely like to see us work towards a solution together so there will be less Trayvon Martin cases in the world.

 

 

 

 

 

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  • http://videos.stltoday.com/p/video?id=6172583

    Is this racist too?

    I'm nauseated by the myopic view of people who only see racism as white-on-black.

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    In reply to JBoston:

    Dude, I don't know if you're from the South, but releasing a guy after questioning who is clearly red-handed-guilty of murder is a story for a good reason. Read your history. What's absurd is y'all claiming news outlets are "inflaming racial tension" or taking the view that racism is only one-way by reporting on this story. The author is RIGHT! It is about race man. Go down to Florida and see for yourself

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to JBoston:

    Yes... sounds like a hate crime... the difference? Felony charges were handed down. So thank you JBoston for oroving our point. Its a felony for a black to assault a white but it is self defense for a white to attack a black.
    Next time try to stay on topic.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Sarah Brinson:

    Sarah, it certainly is a giant shame that Trayvon was shot. However, at 17 he was noit a boy, but rather a young man. He was the initial aggressor and was inflicting geivouse bodily injury on Zimmerman. If Zimmermand legitamatly feared for his life, he had a right to use deadly force. From what I gather, Trayvon was the one who approached and attacked Zimmerman, not the other way around.

  • In reply to JBoston:

    I'm sure you are but at the same time you can't deny that over centuries it was and always has been African Americans being enslaved, beaten, raped, hung & treated as if we were & is less than and why because of the color of our skin no other reason....you are nauseated at the idea that this time your kind wont be able to get away with it bcuz there is amazing strength in numbers and your friend mr. nauseated is going to get whats due him... he chased that boy down or did u not hear the tape??? point blank his life was ended bcuz he was black... we could do this all day long but at the end of the day God saw and heard that boy screaming and begging for his life which was still taken bcuz he looked soo threatening, menacing, or cracked out armed with nothing more than skittles and an iced tea... if Trayvon shared your skin color how would your viewpoint be then??? look up the colors black and white that should show you right there except the definitions are reversed of course cuz ya never been pure... but who wrote the dictionary? a white man of course!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • GREAT read, though such a sad and upsetting case! I enjoyed your points and agree whole-heartedly. Not only does this have racial injustice/prejudice written all over it but the nerve to let this man just get away with calculated murder is beyond me! Not only would they lock US UNDER the jail if the races were reversed but let one of our own gun down another black person, it still wouldn't have happened this way and THEY would feel like we killed 2 birds with 1 stone! No pun intended...but this is the perfect formula for this situation to have happened this way and that's what hurts most. Not only is there a murderer walking around FREE but a "negro-killer" at that!

  • I'm not defending this guy or anything, but I find your post highly ignorant and racist. This guy is half white and half hispanic, so he's technically a minority. Assuming he shot Martin because he's black and Zimmerman is white is stupid. Especially when Zimmerman is part hispanic. How about you look up facts before you try to stir up a race war you ignorant moron?

  • In reply to jewilson919:

    2 late moron... those are the facts..... hes an minority really? " these assholes always gets away".... which assholes was this minority referring 2??? himself? definitely not..... of course you're goonna feel as if this post is ignorant and racist bcuz it exposes what has been done to us countless times throughtout history only because our skin color is darker hmmmmmm but this day and age everybody rockn tans funnny .... why try to be us if you fear us???????????????? everything we do is gimmicked guess thats where that fear comes from... intelligence yea why else would ya ever dream of enslaving us beating us while we were chained.. cuz ya knew without the chains ya dnt stand a chance in heaven or earth enough said.... amazing power in strength in numbers

  • In reply to virgoluvnleo773:

    typo... mimicked

  • In reply to virgoluvnleo773:

    typographical error: the whole racist rant.

  • Shantell, you are a journalism graduate? I suggest you that if your mother tells you her name, you verify it with at least two sources.

    Few of us know the story here, but your color-blinded summary says that you will not let the facts confuse the fiction created by the race baiters.

    How 'bout this for a slant: where did this story suddenly come from? Anything to do with the election of the Chief Community Organizer, President Obama? Bet'cha.

    Check your facts and report back. Report on the contents of character, though, instead of skin hues.

  • In reply to Richard Davis:

    I don't think an unarmed kid (yes, a kid. Elizabeth smart was referred to as a "little girl" and she was 14) getting shot and the shooter being released ***with his gun*** is a plot that has anything to do with Obama.

    The fact you even said that would be hilarious if it weren't so sad.

  • The problem is that too many African Americans are seeing this as a "racist" issue even though NO ONE knows that facts in this case. Race pimps like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson have winged their way down their to stir hate like they always do and criminals like the Black Panthers are trying to start a race war over the issue.... but none of that is talked about by African Americans.

    The facts seem to point toa fight having happened between the over 6-foot tal kid and the Hispanic guy the race pimps want murdered in revenge.

    This Trayvon kid also had all sort of tweets where he used the "n" word, denigrated women, and called himself a thug. He was also kicked out of school for drugs.

    The kid was no innocent.

    Yet, none of these facts that show that Trayvon might have been a trouble maker and thug are being talked about by all these "outraged" African Americans.

    Was the Hispanic guy that shot Trayvon justified? I have no idea. Maybe, maybe not. The cops sur thought so at the start, anyway, which is why he wasn't arrested.

    I don't know enough about the facts to assign blame. But the race pimps sure have merely by the fact that a black person is dead. That is not enough for any sane person to assign guilt, but race pimps don't need truth and logic. They need hate stirred, not dispassionate truth.

    Sadly, the writer of this blog is signing on with the race pimps to stir hate and fear.

  • In reply to publiusforum:

    ... ugh, excuse my typos. I just woke up.

  • In reply to publiusforum:

    so because he used the "N" word means what? I live in schaumburg and hear White,black, hispanic, asian and any other race refer to women out of their name all the time. So whats your point? He was found with an EMPTY bag that had contained Pot. So check your facts before you rant idiot. It's funny because i see kids all the time wearing Hoodies and Baggy clothes..does that make them thugs?? Hardly. Trayvon obviously was a little misguided but he certainly didn't deserve to have his life snuffed out. Some of the facts that came out today stated Trayvon was 6'3 and 150..While Zimmerman was 5'10 and "well over 200lbs" Having a son thats about that size I can all but guarantee if my son tried to attack me he would fail..and miserably. I dont know all the facts but The way it reads appears zimmerman was on a mission, and he killed an "innocent" kid.

  • In reply to insertclichehere:

    Speaking of "idiots" here we have a perfect example of the "idiots" out there that think because they read a few entires in a partisan blog somewhere that they "know" everything and can determine what really happend "the way it reads." Sorry, but you don't know jack. Zimmerman may be in the wrong. But he may not. We just don;t have enough facts to say so. We CANOT say that Trayvon was "an innocent kid."

  • In reply to publiusforum:

    Please provide the Link where the "race pimps" as you so eloquently put it want zimmerman "murdered" I can all but assume you wont be able to provide one..But I'll wait

  • In reply to insertclichehere:

    The professional race pimps are not shouting for the murder of Zimmerman, but the race pimp army, the New Black Panthers, have put a bounty on the man's head.

    Where I come from: that means "dead or alive".

    What would you say if it were the KKK putting out a bounty?

    This is nothing more that a political rope-a-dope stirred up by Obama and the Acorn-type protestors to deflect from the mess of the economy. First it was the Catholic Church dust up; then Sandra Fluke; and now a dead kid. Talk about a sleaze campaign.

  • In reply to publiusforum:

    http://www.chicagonow.com/offhanded-dribble/2012/03/trayvon-martin-tall-black-and-suspended-from-school-aka-grounds-for-justifiable-homicide/

  • In reply to publiusforum:

    "This Trayvon kid also had all sort of tweets where he used the "n" word, denigrated women, and called himself a thug. He was also kicked out of school for drugs."

    I used profanity, I was suspended from school, I wore hoodies and dyed my hair pink when I was 17. If I was walking alone through a gated community with a pack of Skittles in my pocket and someone shot me, please tell me what would happen to my perp.

    What about using profanity and being suspended from school makes it okay to be shot in the street?

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