For many black Americans, the verdict in the Trayvon Martin case is beyond shocking, it is earth shattering. It is beyond disappointing, it is devastating. It is beyond unfair, it is unconscionable.
To many white Americans, justice was served last night. Based on media interviews, social-media posts, and dialogue around coffee tables and in restaurants last night as posted on Facebook and Twitter, many white Americans believe that George Zimmerman was protecting his community the night he singled out Trayvon Martin as “suspicious,” and ultimately defending his life from an alleged violent and vicious physical attack against his person by the 17-year-old unarmed Trayvon Martin.
The stark contrast, yet again of how black and white people simply do not view the prism of race and racism the same, is troubling. It troubles me how we can intermarry black and white, we can work in the same workplaces, we can date across racial lines, our kids can play together, sleep over, and we socialize together, and even worship together. So how can we be so far apart, time and time again when it comes to how we see race or don’t see race as a factor in our everyday decisions, in our culture, and even in our criminal justice system?
Justice as you will recall in America, is supposed to be “blind.” But the sad truth is that she is not.
Last night’s nearly all-white, all-female jury's verdict to acquit George Zimmerman of not just a “murder 2 charge,” but of a lesser “manslaughter” charge, is simply devastating. It is devastating to Trayvon Martin’s family. It is devastating to the black community. And it is devastating to a nation that proclaims to be a place where a 17-year-old, unarmed black boy walking home from the grocery store does not have to fear being shot dead by an armed neighborhood “watchman” who has racially profiled him, and deems him an “asshole” who must not be allowed to get away. We as a nation really need to stop with all of the emotion and all of the race baiting and we need to actually look at the facts of what happened in this case.
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