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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

I Am So Sorry, Trayvon

I'm a 43 year old white woman. If I'd been walking in a primarily black neighborhood, followed, taunted, confronted and shot by a black man, that person would have been in jail all this time.

My heart, my soul, my mind all ache for Trayvon, his friends, his family and everyone in America whose expectations were dashed last weekend. George Zimmerman is a predator who hunted and killed a boy just because he thought he could get away with it, and now the law has shocked us all by approving his actions. Justice died that day.

Trayvon, poor boy, brought Skittles to a gunfight.

The people crowing that the issue isn't about race at all, the ones saying that the instigators are merely playing the race card as a scam, that the justice system "worked" because of the "law" that Florida calls "Stand Your Ground."

People think the justice system worked? Is this you? Then I have something to say to you.

If this is you, you are full of shit. You are a racist, you secretly fear black people. When you see a black person coming towards you on the sidewalk, you reflexively feel worried and anxious just because of the color of his skin.

If this is you, you are lying. If you truly, in your heart of hearts, believe the system "worked" then please allow me to take what you are saying and rephrase it for you.
"That could have been my teenager walking down the street with candy and iced tea, and no, I wouldn't even have pressed charges against the insane gun nut who fired hot bullets into the child I birthed, raised and loved, because the system worked."
If you're not lying, then are you mentally ill? Seeing a person on the street that you don't know, who isn't doing anything wrong, but you don't like the look of him, is a perfectly justified scenario for a gun to you? To pull out a gun and shoot a person dead? No crime here, really? This is the justice system working. Really.

All this academic repartee on the news. Pundits arguing rights and laws and justice and theorizing and hypothesizing! I want to slap the entire country across its entitled, racist face and say STOP. SHUT UP. AND STOP.

George Zimmerman. This man without any official authority, no affiliation or right to be out patrolling anything, felt empowered to target and hunt a young man and shoot him dead. The kid was just walking home. He was baked, he got the munchies, he wanted a bag of Skittles and some iced tea. People are calling it justice because Trayvon turned and confronted the strange man who was following him. What did he say to Zimmerman? You know what? IT  DOESN'T MATTER. Anything, anything at all, that Trayvon may have said to the scary stranger stalking him, whatever words he chose, in whatever tone, is entirely, absolutely irrelevant. Words don't kill. Gun toting assholes do.

And please, "Stand Your Ground"? That's what Trayvon was doing. What Zimmerman did is called cold blooded murder.

If you don't get this, do me a favor and slap your stupid face as hard as you can, and if you don't pass out, then you didn't do it hard enough.

What if some guy on my husband's walk home doesn't like the look of long hair, earrings and tattoos? My husband could be dead in the street, and his murderer would be supported by you? You would look me in the eye and tell me, yes, that's "Stand Your Ground," it's the law.

No, The system didn't work. If that's the system working, then the system is terrifying.

This can't be over, it just can't be over. If it's over, then none of us will ever be safe out on the street again, because now there is always the chance of meeting your zimmerman, the gun toting asshole who doesn't like the look of you, kills you and deems it justified. Walks free protected by the worst possible definition of "justice."  If this is our working system, then consider this nation armed and dangerous.