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PostHeaderIcon The Reason Why Trayvon Martin’s Death (and Zimmerman’s Acquittal) Are So Personal

Trayvon Martin

Trayvon Martin

(This is dedicated to my one and only nephew, D, and all other young upstanding black men like him. I have thought about you every day since this nightmare began for Trayvon’s family.)

I’m mad, disgusted, disheartened, and brokenhearted. So I will do the thing that comes most naturally at this time of hurt and outrage. I will write!

George Zimmerman was found not guilty of second-degree murder in the killing of unarmed Trayvon Martin. In fact, he wasn’t even convicted of manslaughter. He was convicted of nothing. He is a free man: free to live his life, free to enjoy drawing breath into his lungs for however many more days God allows him to walk the Earth.

The last I checked, Trayvon Martin was still dead because he went for a walk to buy some Skittles and tea.

Though Zimmerman was the one in court facing charges, Trayvon was really the only one on trial. Throughout this farcical trial (after a forced arrest), he had to defend his honor from the grave and prove that he didn’t cause his own death.

It’s a mockery of our justice system that someone can admit to killing another human being, after setting in motion the chain of events leading to this death, and still be found “not guilty”.

Trayvon Martin's family

Trayvon Martin’s family

I’ll end this on a personal note so you can better understand my reaction, particularly as an African-American male, to this despicable non-verdict.

Many are outraged in this country, so I’m not special or unique in that regard. What hurts me the most, more than anything, is the knowledge that this could have happened to my nephew. He was the same age as Trayvon at the time of the killing, probably dressed similarly to Trayvon, and is like me insomuch as he’s been taught from a very young age to stand up for himself.

He’s a strong, good-looking, smart, and articulate young man. (Some might say mouthy, but as he’s picked up much of that from me I’ll stick with articulate.) I could easily see him confronting a suspicious individual who was tailing him as he walked home. And I can see him getting the better of that individual when the confrontation comes to a head.

Now that this verdict has been rendered, you can add that I can see him getting killed as a result of protecting himself, and that the killer will get off scot free because this is America: a place where you can kill young black men and get away with it!

This could have happened to my one and only nephew, and his killer could have gotten off a free man. And his mom, his dad (my brother), his grandparents and uncles on both sides would be grieving the life he would never get to live while Zimmerman goes about his business.

I just don’t know how I would be able to do that!

This isn’t what I would expect from America in 2013. It could certainly have happened to me back when I was growing up in the late 70’s that age. And let’s not forget, it did happen to Emmett Till in 1955. I guess we haven’t come that far after all.

God bless Trayvon.

God bless his brother, Jahvaris.

And God bless his parents, Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton

One Response to “The Reason Why Trayvon Martin’s Death (and Zimmerman’s Acquittal) Are So Personal”

  • I lost my 16 yr old son, by different reasons, and I just want to extend my heart and prayers out to all of you.
    Here on The island of Maui, My home, we are outraged by this verdict.
    We support the family of Trayvon!

    I just wanted you all to know that.

    God bless you all.
    Prayers of comfort and healing.

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