Florida teen Trayvon Martin’s death (Feb 26/2012) has turned the lowly Hoody/Hoodie into a Political or is it a Racial — Exclamation Point!
People are donning Hoodies and what…daring vigilantes to shoot them…?
In rallies, marches and online petitions, people are demanding that the 17-year-old’s alleged killer George Zimmerman should be arrested…that the police chief be drummed out-of-town!
Hoodies have become a national symbol of Oppression…?
I URGE CAUTION!
Over and over again we see examples where we rush to judgment, especially in cases including race, WITHOUT waiting for ALL the facts to fall into place. Wait! Maybe there are no MORE facts – but wait!
Yes – 28-year-old Zimmerman could be a racist – maybe! Or a hotheaded vigilante – maybe!
The town of Sanford (median family income 2009: 50K) describes itself as: “one of Central Florida’s oldest incorporated cities, is home to brick lined streets, towering oaks, elegant store-fronts and large, nineteenth-century Victorian homes.”
Trayvon Martin could be a saint – maybe!
Those of us who were not there, who get their news from third-party sources like TV or the internet, who have NOT spoken to either of those involved, who do not KNOW the individuals involved, should NOT rush to try, convict and demand execution at this point.
There are things we know – and things we don’t know. Or do we?
OK, things that make sense – and things that don’t make sense – to non-legal brains like mine!
For instance, Zimmerman’s claims of self-defense under Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law.
People are blaming the law. Just because people abuse the law does not mean it’s a bad law! If someone wants to f-uss with you, just shoot ’em all. Self Defense…YOU ARE STANDING YOUR GROUND.
Unless the law does not care what circumstances lead up to the feeling of being threatened? So I can punch you, but if you pull out a knife than I can shoot you…? YOU follow the person and, I suspect, don’t just follow at a distance, silently, (person stops-you stop) far enough away to observe but not interact…?
- Cops tell you DON’T follow the person, but you follow anyway…?
- YOU create an environment of provocation where a likely outcome is either you confront the person or the person confronts you…?
- THEN shoot and kill in self-defense…? Because now you’re feeling threatened…? Is that why you were following and baiting the person..? You were afraid? STANDING YOUR GROUND?
- Seems to me your left your ground a ways back – way over there!
I’m obviously missing something ’cause I don’t get it.
So who was Trayvon Martin? What kind of kid was he? Information now coming out paints Trayvon in a less than stellar light. Police have leaked some information about Trayvon being suspended from school over issues like marijuana possession – traces found in his bag? Does marijuana possession make you a bad person? ‘Cause then some Presidents are going down!
What if Trayvon was the worst thug know to police. “Just walking along, minding his business in a thug kind of way?” Even then, based on what I’ve heard SO FAR, seems to me Zimmerman would still be wrong.
But…? Yeah – but! Do we know ALL? Maybe. Maybe not!
Might there be more to know? Maybe yes. Maybe no.
Still – Let’s wait. Zimmerman’s friends and counsel are hinting that there is more. Bring it! What if there is more…?
I can’t see many scenarios that would make Zimmerman look better. The kid was holding a bottle of Iced Tea and a bag of candy, for goodness sake! Not a spiked club!
Did Trayvon grab the gun? If I got into a scuffle with somebody packing a gun, I’d try to grab that gun too!
Last I checked, anyone, including blacks, can walk a public area in America without being considered guilty of a crime UNTIL the person’s actually committed a crime. We can’t shoot and kill people just because WE think the person looks likely to commit a crime.
What if I locked myself out of my home, got a ride to work, then called and asked someone to go to my house and break a window to get my keys?
Should a neighborhood watch vigilante who does not know the person I sent shoot and kill that person?
No! Mr./Ms. Neighborhood vigilante should call the cops, who will come and do their job – meaning they will not assume that my relative, friend, co-worker is a thief who is trying to break in, but will order the person to climb down and explain him/herself. Then they will call me and I’ll explain – and they’ll say sorry, misunderstanding, and I’ll say: You were doing your job.
That’s THEIR job! The cops. Paid and trained by you to handle such cases. That’s why you/we wait…for the cops to arrive.
Why we should wait now, before rushing to judgment. Much as it looks like a cut and dried case, WE DON’T KNOW.
Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton go home!!! Just go home. If it turns out that the version we’re hearing is indeed what happened, THEN come back!
In the meantime, my advice to some kids:
- No hoodies
- No Skittles
- No bottled drinks!
Any one of these can be construed as a liability. But apparently when combined, all three constitute enough of a threat that Stand Your Ground Law or NO Stand Your Ground Law, you won’t have a leg to stand on!