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Justice or Just Us


The vigilante murder of young Trayvon Martin and his legal lynching in the courtroom is producing a valuable conversation about racism that is probing deep into the very heart of our country. 

Hopefully, it all will lead to an honest and frank examination among the white population. 

So far, the intense discussions unfolding on virtually every media outlet expose the baseless racist argument as pathetically shallow and empty, none more so than the charge that somehow Trayvon Martin was responsible for his own death. 

This preposterous allegation belongs in the dustbin of history along with defense of America’s ugly legacy of slavery and segregation. 

Certainly all the main racist arguments of our sordid history have been repeatedly repudiated but they continually get regurgitated as in re-circulated and re-packaged. 

Right-wing commentators, for example, deny race was a factor in George Zimmerman’s killing of Trayvon Martin. What? Trayvon was absolutely targeted because of his color. That is what originally aroused the biased fears of Zimmerman. Can any reasonably thoughtful person deny this? 

I may be white, but I’m not stupid! 

Another one of the favorite tactics of these throwback commentators is to rapidly shift attention away from an examination of Zimmerman’s actual stalking and profiling of Martin. They change the subject and attempt to shift blame onto the Black community by citing crime statistics in large cities like Chicago. 

Of course, crime in Chicago has nothing to do with the facts of Trayvon’s murder. Plus, a genuine discussion of crime cannot possibly be separated from a discussion of how the enduring legacy of racism and poverty tears apart the social fabric of a community. 

But that’s not their purpose. The whole premise of conservatives is to suggest that Blacks, as in their fabricated example of Chicago, are responsible for their own self-induced plight, thus tying into the twisted notion repeatedly mentioned that Trayvon himself was responsible for his own death. This is abhorrent nonsense. 

I may be white, but I’m not stupid. 

To further buttress their retrograde prejudices, these bloviating loudmouths cite the judge prohibiting mention of race in the trial, Sanford police and FBI reports rejecting race as a factor and the prosecution team still insisting post-trial that race was not a factor. 

But these denials by almost all the powerful government institutions and their representatives that race did not play a role in Trayvon’s murder does actually reveal an important point, but it’s the opposite one intended by the reactionary race-deniers.

 

Prosecution: Not So Much Incompetent as Unfair 

Racism in America not only exists, it is excruciatingly deep, seeping not just into personal consciousness but into the most powerful institutions of our society. 

For example, a criminal justice system that prosecutes on a federal and local level more Blacks, imprisons more Blacks and sentences more Blacks to longer prison terms than whites with similar charges cannot be relied upon to change its colors and vigorously and thoroughly prosecute a racist crime like Zimmerman’s. 

Recognizing racism as Zimmerman’s motivation would challenge the statistics, for comparable types of work performed by whites with less education and skill. 

This is fact, this is the record. As long as businesses profit from discrimination, there exists a huge incentive for it to endure. 

I may be white, but I’m not stupid!

 

How to Fix It

I am particularly inspired by the words of leading abolitionist Frederick Douglass. mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";
color:#181818;background:white”>Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation are people who want crops without plowing the ground….,” he famously said.
 

 

 

I may be white, but I’m not stupid! 

local1781@yahoo.com 

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