My Take on the Zimmerman Verdict
Everyone can agree on the fact that the American justice system is far from perfect but in the end it works pretty well. In this country, people are still presumed innocent until proven guilty by a judge or jury of one’s peers.
It used to be that when a jury spoke that was the end of a case. Regardless of how many people agreed or disagreed with a jury’s decision, everyone accepted it as being the last word on a legal matter. Oh yes, a case might be discussed and re-discussed for months or years to come, in homes and around water coolers across the country, but a jury’s word was still the final word. Even while having heated discussions about a particular case people did not resort to violence if they disagreed with a jury’s decision though. Fast forward to today and now it seems that a jury’s decision is accepted by one and all IF, and only IF, mob rule agrees. Otherwise we get signs and mobs yelling, “No Justice, no Peace”. In other words, the mob must approve of everything or they will riot and cause untold trouble.
Neither the Prosecution nor Defense in the George Zimmerman versus The State of Florida case presented evidence of race. Yes, there was “profiling” suggested but NOT “racial profiling”. The profiling that went on had to do with past neighborhood disturbances including robberies and home break-ins. So any profiling that went on had to do with a “suspicious looking character”, out for a snack on a dark rainy night, not profiling a particular race. Had I been the “neighborhood watch person” I too would have found someone out for a snack on a rainy night a tad suspicious.
Oh, but leave it to our 24-hour a day media and media encouraged mob to find something to focus on after the Zimmerman case was decided. After the jury decision was announced on live TV, people hoping to be real news casters when they grow up spent days discussing and re-discussing every possible angle of the entire case. There were times when cable TV personalities, parading as news reporters, would actually say something like, “You don’t think race had anything to do with this decision?” We also got the latest performance of a European tabloid personality trying to resurrect a “Daily Mirror” type career for himself in this country. It’s been obvious for some time this wanna-be talk show host would like to redesign this country’s laws to match the laws he doesn’t currently live under himself. The issue of looking “across the pond” for leadership was settled some 230+ years ago, and we haven’t cared to look back since either. Another time, a TV personality similar to those in the tabloid world said, “Wait, George Zimmerman is white or Hispanic and Treyvon Martin was black, you don’t think race was involved?” Talk about hammering someone over the head into agreeing with a particular opinion. I was shocked with that little performance, but I guess I shouldn’t have been the least bit surprised. When 24 1-hour time allotments need to be filled the so-called media will find something to fill those time slots, whether that fill material is legitimate or not.
What I was absolutely speechless about was CNN’s interview with Treyvon Martin’s friend Rachel Jeantel, after the trial. We watched Rachel Jeantel rightfully point out that five of the six jurors were white and one was Latino, which according to her was the only reason for a “not guilty” verdict. Oh, and we aren’t supposed to interpret that as being just as racist as Miss Jentel claims George Zimmerman was? Never mind Florida law allows for one thing and a race baited mob wants something different.
Since then the Florida Governor himself has announced the “Stand Your Ground Law” is the law of Florida and it will not be revisited. On top of all that, we have Attorney General Eric Holder, the top prosecutor in the country, calling for an end to the “Stand Your Ground Law”. Suggesting that Americans should no longer have the right to defend themselves, their loved ones, their property, and their neighborhood, regardless of where they are. WOW!! Then we wonder why many in our society continue to arm themselves to the max??
Even the President of the United States decided to weigh in on the Zimmerman case. He pointed out that African American males are regularly viewed with suspicion and that racism is quite often blatant. That may well be true but where is the President as “black on black” murders occur each and every day in his own home town?? Or are those lives not viewed as being of equal value as a life lost at the hands of a Latino??
If anyone wonders why there is such a racial divide in this country the Prosecution’s star witness should answer that question. Everyone is allowed to speak any way they want to among family and friends. On the other hand, there are certain ways of acting and speaking while testifying in court if a person wants to be viewed as equal to others. Are these expectations unfair? No!! These expectations would only be unfair if they applied to just one race, one ethnic group, or one gender. Instead of adhering to those expectations Miss Jentel used what some view as “gutter language”. She used words and phrases such as “n*gga” and “white cracker”. In using such language Miss Jentel came across as being sarcastic, uneducated, and, uncooperative. Is that being racist? No! I’d be saying the very same thing about anyone, of any race, who acted in a similar manner while on the witness stand in a court of law.
The main issue in the Zimmerman case and everyday situations that African Americans are involved in is wanting to be treated fairly and equally. That much should be a foregone conclusion for African Americans as well as all races and ethnic groups. The problem arises when African Americans insist on reminding everyone, every chance they get, how different they are from others in society. At the same time African Americans ask to be treated the same as their fellow citizens. It never has worked that way and never will. People who want to be treated equally to everyone else around them must take the ups and down involved in this society. Or, they can demand to be treated differently and live with the consequences of that choice. Caucasians, Asians, Mexicans, and many other racial and ethnic groups in this country all endure their fair share of inequality, yet they aren’t constantly complaining and hammering others over the head with it. They endure the inequality and try even harder in the future to “fit in”.