You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot I said that this could have been my son. Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago.So Obama could have been a dope-smoking juvenile delinquent who likes to beat people who look at him wrong.
There are very few African American men in this country who haven't had the experience of being followed when they were shopping in a department store. That includes me. There are very few African American men who haven't had the experience of walking across the street and hearing the locks click on the doors of cars. That happens to me -- at least before I was a senator. There are very few African Americans who haven't had the experience of getting on an elevator and a woman clutching her purse nervously and holding her breath until she had a chance to get off. That happens often.I have been similarly profiled many times myself.
The African American community is also knowledgeable that there is a history of racial disparities in the application of our criminal laws -- everything from the death penalty to enforcement of our drug laws. And that ends up having an impact in terms of how people interpret the case.Yes, this is old news. Martin Luther King Jr. said in 1961: “Do you know that Negroes are 10 percent of the population of St. Louis and are responsible for 58% of its crimes? We’ve got to face that.”
Now, this isn't to say that the African American community is naïve about the fact that African American young men are disproportionately involved in the criminal justice system; that they’re disproportionately both victims and perpetrators of violence. It’s not to make excuses for that fact -- although black folks do interpret the reasons for that in a historical context.
I think it’s understandable that there have been demonstrations and vigils and protests, and some of that stuff is just going to have to work its way through, as long as it remains nonviolent. If I see any violence, then I will remind folks that that dishonors what happened to Trayvon Martin and his family.Dishonors? No, aggression, violence, and torture against innocent symbols of civilization is what Trayvon Martin was all about.
I know that there's been commentary about the fact that the "stand your ground" laws in Florida were not used as a defense in the case. On the other hand, if we're sending a message as a society in our communities that someone who is armed potentially has the right to use those firearms even if there's a way for them to exit from a situation, is that really going to be contributing to the kind of peace and security and order that we'd like to see?This is extremely offensive. Martin is the one who had a chance to exit. He went back to the house his dad was visiting, when girl on the phone goaded him into "whoop-ass" against the "creep-ass cracka". Then Zimmerman was being beaten senseless into the sidewalk, and had no opportunity to exit (as long as Martin was alive).
And for those who resist that idea that we should think about something like these "stand your ground" laws, I'd just ask people to consider, if Trayvon Martin was of age and armed, could he have stood his ground on that sidewalk? And do we actually think that he would have been justified in shooting Mr. Zimmerman who had followed him in a car because he felt threatened? And if the answer to that question is at least ambiguous, then it seems to me that we might want to examine those kinds of laws.
Obama is saying that it is okay for black people to beat up anyone who treats them with suspicion, and if the non-blacks don't like it, then they should just stay in their cars.
For 45 seconds Zimmerman cried for help while his head was being pounded into the pavement. Two witnesses came out of their homes to help, but their wives persuaded them not to get involved. So they called 911 instead.
In the USA today, most rich white liberals denounce racism in all its forms, but they move to predominantly white neighborhoods where they do not have to deal with black crime.
No politician is willing to say that Trayvon Martin was doing anything wrong. Like Obama, blaming the innocent man is the politically expedient thing to do. Likewise, no politician is willing to blame the single mom who sue for all the child support and welfare they can get. They don't want to be accused of being anti-black or anti-woman. It appears that there are common sense bits of advice that can only be said in private.
Update: Sailer points out that Obama seems to be saying that Zimmerman would ahve been a racist if he had locked his car and stayed in, and is also a racist for leaving his car.