I would like to begin with letting it be known upfront that I have been pro-Trayvon Martin throughout this case. No, I do not have an issue with people exercising their constitutional right. No, I did not hope for justice to be served against Zimmerman because Trayvon was black. I hope that justice would be served because I do not believe that Zimmerman should have killed Trayvon Martin. There are numerous reasons why I believe this, but I won’t go into detail about that.
I’ve been following this case since the beginning, not only because it was heavily covered in the media, but because I am from Sanford. I went to elementary school in Sanford and I graduated from high school in Sanford. My family still resides there and so do a good number of friends. So, this touched home because for a good portion of my life it’s been called home. Sanford is not by any means a perfect city. It has its flaws, just like other cities around the world.
There are a lot of observations I’ve made about this case. I personally did not think it was handled properly, and that’s just my humble opinion. The fact that it took 47 days for George Zimmerman (GZ) to be arrested is mind-boggling. Not to mention, after shooting and killing a teenager, Zimmerman was not asked to take a drug or alcohol test. I also do not believe that the jury selection should have involved locals. I have other issues, but I’d rather not get too deep into those.
I was extremely disappointed when the verdict came back not guilty. I didn’t think the state proved Murder 2, but I thought GZ would have been found guilty of manslaughter. I was shocked and not shocked at the same time. I became even more disgusted to learn that the jury initially voted 3-not guilty, 1-2nd degree murder and 2-manslaughter according to one of the jurors. I have no idea what happened in that jury room; I can only speculate. I just don’t understand how they were able to convince the others to vote not guilty. I don’t respect the verdict, but I accept it.
Another observation I’ve made in regard to this case is how people are comparing this case to blacks killing blacks. I’ve seen people ask, why do blacks care so much about a half-white half-Hispanic man killing a black boy, when black people are killing black people everyday? It is my opinion that in many cases involving blacks killing blacks, the murderer is arrested in a timely manner and convicted. Since people choose to compare the Trayvon case to black on black killings, I wonder why isn’t it being compared to white on white killings, Hispanic on Hispanic killings, etc.? People are also comparing this case to other murders where in fact, the person(s) who committed the crime was(were) arrested immediately. The bottom line is that there’s a lot of people killing other people. Period. It’s an awful aspect of the world we live in. However, the reason why the Trayvon case became so wide-spread is because GZ was not arrested in the beginning; he was arrested 47 days later and everyone was aware that he killed Trayvon. It wasn’t until people started paying attention to that fact that it became so popular, for a lack of a better term, which brings me to my next observation.
If you’ve ever underestimated the power of social media, I bet you are singing a different tune now. While social media has a bad side, and at times, can ruin the lives of some of its users, it can also provide a lot of value to the people who use it. Social media, in my opinion, has played an intricate role in bringing attention to this case. Attention it so rightfully deserved. And before those who disagree with me jump to conclusions, let me say this now. I do not think that the death of one child outweighs the death of another.
I understand people’s issues with the media and how they choose to report the news. However, do people really truly believe that the media can focus the same amount of attention on every single murder case? It’s not possible. Do understand this though, the media does it’s job. It reports on things that people are focused on, and it just so happens that the world became focused on the Trayvon Martin case. If you’re bent out of shape about how they report, I have a couple of suggestions: Stop watching the news or try to draw attention to cases you believe deserve to be in the spotlight. I without a doubt believe that the news can be biased, but if that’s your gripe, you may want to go with my first suggestion.
An additional observation that I had is that people called Trayvon a thug because he had gold teeth (I’m not sure they were permanent), took pictures with his middle fingers extended, got suspended from school, smoked weed/pot, and allegedly got in fights. A thug by definition is a cruel or vicious ruffian, robber, or murderer. The aforementioned does not make him a thug by any means. How many parents’ teenage sons have gotten suspended from school, smoked weed/pot, got into fights and have shot a bird (extended middle finger)? I’m sure there are countless parents who have had to deal with the same behavior from their own sons, but do we deem them thugs? Probably not.
My last observation deals with racism. I don’t think there’s a person in this world that truly believes racism doesn’t exist. People treat racism like a taboo, when in my opinion, it should be addressed head on. Racism exists because it’s apart of a cycle; it’s taught and learned. I can’t even begin to fathom how a person could have so much hate for another human being, let alone an entire group of people. It’s impossible for me to understand because I wasn’t taught to feel hatred or dismay for anyone else. My experiences have taught me that I don’t like certain individuals, not entire groups of people.
The people of this earth are not on an equal playing field. That is the truth. If you’re tired of playing the outfield, and believe that you deserve to be the pitcher, make your own noise first. If that doesn’t prevail, get people to cheer you on. This is what happened in the case of Trayvon Martin. While the outcome is not what we hoped for, do know that had it not been for people willing to make noise for someone else, Zimmerman may have never been arrested and tried for the murder of Trayvon Martin. Also know that with knowledge and perseverance, the masses can change things.