It is increasingly upsetting to me how the press incites riots in the United States by mis-reporting on incidents and playing on racial divides. Whether it be the Duke Lacross team that was later proven innocent or many other cases it needs to stop. Let’s dissect the latest such event.
THE PRESS INCITES- Initial reports come out that a racist white man shoots an honor student young man who was simply walking by with a drink and a bag of skittles on the way to his dad’s house. Reports are that he can be screaming for help on the 911 call. The police in Sanford Florida do not arrest or charge this man. What is going on, why is this racist killer of an unarmed black youth not in jail? Picture is posted that we all see over and over – George Zimmerman racist white guy in mug shot, Trayvon Martin when he was 14 and a cute kid, three years ago.
THE RESULTS – As a result, I get tons of facebook posts and emails about this horrible racist and the horrible police. I say I don’t really understand what is going on and want more information first. I am viewed as defending a racist. President Barack Obama says it is an injustice and the man should be convicted. The Black Panthers come out and offer a $1 million reward for the capture (kidnapping) of this man because they do not follow “white man’s justice.” A former black panther Congressman appears on the floor of the House in a hoodie. “Hoodie protests” sweep the nation. Spike Lee tweets what he thinks is the man’s address. He gets it wrong. It is an old man and woman that live there. They are attacked and harrassed and have to leave their home and go into hiding.
MORE INFORMATION: Suppose you had heard the police report first… George Zimmerman, a Mexican-Amercian man and Captain of His Neighborhood Watch was on patrol. There were an increase of robberies in his neighborhood. He had called the police 46 times during previous patrols without an incident. He had taken initial training to become a police officer. In his spare time, he tutors black kids on how to read in his home. He has black relatives. On patrol he sees someone wondering around, not from his neighborhood. He calls the police. While on the phone he follows the man who takes off running. He tells the police he thinks the man might have a gun in his belt. The police tell him to stop following and he does. He goes back to his car.
The youth then follows him to his car and asks, “You have a problem? George replies, “No.” The youth says, “You do now!” he punches George in the face, breaking his nose. He jumps on top of him and begins to slam George’s head into the ground over and over. George is the one heard on the 911 call yelling for help. He is afraid the boy is going to kill him. He asks a neighbor for help, and the man goes inside his house. In desperation as his head is battered, he pulls out his gun and shoots the boy, killing him.
The neighbor confirms the story and tells police he saw Trayvon on top of George beating the crap out of him with George yelling for help. Doctors examine George and find he has a broken nose, his skull is cut open badly on the back of his head from being slammed in the ground, and his clothes are stained with grass on his back. Trayvon had no injuries other than the one gun shot. Tayvon was in the neighborhood because he was under suspension from school for a drug violation. Suppose you had then seen these pictures:
Yes, the same two people. Racism enflamed by the press through guilty until proved innocent and public reputation lynchings are going to result in people getting killed and us being even more divided. When real racist acts occur, we need to jump right on them. But please, try to wait until the facts are out. The Duke Lacrosse players hired a black prostitute to provide them sex. She lied and said they raped her, beat her and drew a swastika on her head and called her the N word. She later recounted and said that was all a lie to get money. But how many of you know that? Most still believe it happened. We have enough terrible racism without fanning the flames of division over events that are not clearly racist.
I don’t know if George fired in self-defense or if he should be charged with manslaughter for over-reacting to a stranger in his neighborhood. I don’t know if he followed Trayvon because he was black. I don’t know if Trayvon attacked him because he was angry for being followed because he thought it was because he was black. I just know it was a tragedy. But the second tragedy is the way the press and our national figures have reacted, inciting hatred, racism and anger without all the facts.