Law and Justice Are Not Interchangeable Terms: The Wake that Follows the George Zimmerman Verdict
Pray tell, one more time, for the record – what about Trayvon Martin drew George Zimmerman’s attention to him? It certainly wasn’t that he was doing anything particularly wrong. He was merely meandering – albeit not completely unidirectionally (he was 17, after all – not yet at that age where a venture out into the night without a car means returning to where you came from with the immediacy of someone who’s done it a million times before, is sick of it and is scared of what threats the night may possess) – back towards his father’s apartment, which was in that very complex. Had Zimmerman identified himself as the “neighborhood watch” guy, Martin may have identified himself as someone who had every right to be where he was.
So if it wasn’t his actions, it was his appearance, right? The thing that caught Zimmerman’s eye was how Trayvon looked. It’s what sparked the whole confrontation. Right?
Some people (who will remain nameless because I don’t wish to cause you any additional discomfort, since the world, in its confusing, multicultural state, must give you fits anyway) continue to insist that this wasn’t about race and that “justice” was somehow served. Somehow the verdict resulting the way it did has made you brave in voicing your ignorantly malignant opinion. “Can’t argue with the law,” I’m sure you’re thinking. It’s inarguable, immovable. Right?
Wrong. There once were laws in place that, among countless other judiciary injustices, allowed for segregation and that entitled big, strong men to beat their “uncooperative” wives within an inch of their lives without fear of reproach. There is one now in Florida that has been left up to such interpretation that a woman, in fear of being beaten by her big, strong ex husband, “stands her ground” by firing merely a warning shot (arguments about how her bullet could have hit her child in the other room have their merit, however any time a gun is discharged, unless it is directly into the ground, a possibility exists that it will hit someone) to keep herself from another beating and gets 20 years in jail while, during the same stretch of time, a man stalks and kills a young boy on his way home, who made the fatal choice to confront his pursuer, and walks.
For many of you, it’s just that you love your guns so much (and please don’t tell me this isn’t the case – you post pictures of your guns the way parents post pictures of their children). In some strange way, the acquittal of Zimmerman somehow warmed the sidearm in your hip holster. It justified its presence. For you, “justice was served,” old-west style, simply because the guy with the gun won. The fear in your heart, that you travel with every day, was validated. After all, it could have just as easily been you instead of Zimmerman, “Batmanning” the streets, who went through the terrible ordeal of having to defend his actions and came out the other end a free man.
I hope you enjoy your the rest of your life living in a box and wondering why the world continues to grow more and more confusing as you miss everything cool, new and interesting and die angry. Just please stop telling me how “justice was served.” Your stupid is showing.
(Image courtesy of The Huffington Post – Note this is not on a street but on a walkway between apartment buildings. Draw your own conclusions.)
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