I’m going to be austere on this rant. I know, a lot of the time, I sensationalize on here (if you aren’t easily offended, see my attacks on Muslims, Catholics, and Kony 2012). The main point of this web site is to be offensive, so that’s understandable. Hell, we have a “come at me, bro” disclaimer at the bottom of the page. This evening, though, I would like to discuss, frankly, the Trayvon Martin situation down in Florida. I’m not going to re-explain everything because chances are you either were linked to this by me through Facebook or you somehow located this article in the internet mélange, so you know the basic details.
I have never been, nor do I ever expect to be, an advocate for firearm bans – a position that runs counter to most of my stances and is especially curious to many since I have never even handled a gun. In fact, I consider people who would stoop to using a gun offensively or in self-defense as sissies. That is not a critique of hunters, officers of the law, service members, or gun enthusiasts who are responsible with their weaponry, by the way, more at people who carry a gun to appear tough (thugs, rednecks, etc.). Yet, even in the face of school shootings, drug wars, suicides, and other atrocities committed with guns, I still don’t support gun bans. Perhaps, like several of my other ethical positions, I would prefer to get to the root of the problem and fix that – I don’t know. In any event, while I’m not anti-guns I’m also not pro-guns, and castle doctrine laws – particularly ‘stand your ground’ laws like Florida’s – I think go a little too far.
Regardless of above, the Trayvon Martin situation has exposed some interesting things I’d like to point out. They stem from this: my social network is pretty much split on the matter down race lines. Not a peep from any white people I’m subscribed to (and, honestly, if I unsubscribed they were probably not the kind of people who would post about this) and outrage from any black people I’m subscribed to. This brings up a couple of quick observations.
Especially in light of the Kony 2012 debacle, what’s different about this that isn’t garnering more outrage?
If black people perceive this is a racial problem, why don’t we take that seriously and/or why do we try to disprove it?
About the first one. I don’t have an answer, really. I realize that I’ve been particularly nebulous so far about my feelings on the matter so let me state the following as clearly as possible: This was a racially motivated act. George Zimmerman was not acting in self-defense, he is being a manipulative abuser of an already suspicious law. George Zimmerman should go to jail for life. Yes, I’m aware Zimmerman is Hispanic. Why was it racially motivated? I’m confident that the majority of the doubting I’m hearing about Martin’s activities stem from the color of his skin and I’m also confident that if Zimmerman had killed a white child, I would not be hearing any doubts about that child’s wholesomeness. I’m also pretty confident that it would be a much bigger news story – not that it isn’t big already. My apologies if you’re experiencing some dissonance with me right now. We’ll have to disagree.
About the second one. My feeling is that if black people view this as racial, it should be taken seriously. This isn’t Al Sharpton on stage bloviating: these are your friends and coworkers expressing their concern and their feelings (though I’m surprised I haven’t heard from Al yet, maybe I just haven’t looked hard enough). At the very least, you should speak with them about it so that you can better understand what’s going on. If you’re already doing that, great – if not, it’s never too late. Why would you try to talk your friend down about a feeling or just outright discount them? Argue with them all they want about whether Obama is responsible for gas prices or the taxes being taken out of your paycheck. But I think it’s safe to say that if I’m viewing such a discrepancy between my light-skinned friends and dark-skinned friends, it’s probably a universal trend. I could be wrong, and that’s fine.
That’s all I really have to say. Please check out the links below for more information. The last one sort of explains my feelings about it being racially motivated.
Second: Castle doctrine
Third: Details of the incident
Fourth: About listening to Black people