Monday, July 15, 2013

Federal Civil Rights Prosecution Zimmerman-Martin Case

It's been a really long time since I have been on my "soapbox" but after watching the closure of the 210 freeway in LOS ANGELES this morning on the news, because of marching protesters, angry over the verdict of the Zimmerman/Martin case in FLORIDA, I simply had to jump in on the fuss.

I believe that Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman are both victims in this sad affair. It is sad when any person, regardless of race, is lost due to violence of any kind.  My heart goes out to all of the family and friends who are effected on both sides of this tragedy.

I happen to believe in the current justice system that we uphold as a nation, flawed as it is, it is the best out there. The prosecutions duty was to provide evidence beyond a shadow of a doubt that Zimmerman murdered Martin, and did not act in self defense.  They obviously did not provide that evidence.  Period... the end. Then why has this turned into a national crisis over "civil rights"?
Anything to divide. That is the job of the media.

Perspective given by the media.

I posted the following in a Facebook status update:

Seriously, please put away the "civil rights" movement card and the "racism" card as well. This is the United States and we have a black president for heavens sake.

My favorite response came from my son:

Racism does still exist, but it is primarily contained to the hearts of individuals! It is not an institution that is systemic today warranting the same actions as the noble men and women who lead the struggle for civil rights in the US in the 50's-60's! Is the system perfect? NO. Can it be improved? OF COURSE. But today we live in a nation where any ethnicity can become a CEO, Millionaire, Celebrity, or even President of the United States. Today there are probably more intercultural and interracial marriages and unions than any other time in the history of our country. Today a person can improve on their situation no matter their socioeconomic situation, race, or sexual orientation if they are individually motivated and desire to do so! 

So why then are people marching in the name of civil rights and equality across the nation?! Because one person was killed by another person? Whether his death was justifiable or not, it can not be classified the same as the martyrs of the great civil rights movement. When I first heard about the Trayvon Martin case from different media outlets it conjured an image in my mind of an African American child, maybe 11, being gunned down by an old white man who followed him from a store or something in like manner. From images and posts I have seen, I am clearly not the only one who had such an image in their mind. Unfortunately this image is simply not true. In reality, Treyvon was not as young, innocent, or helpless as made out to be and Zimmerman is not the hood-wearing, racist, champion of the white supremacists as he has been made out to be. In fact, I doubt that any white supremest group would even grant him entrance into their twisted backwoods clubs let alone membership! It seems to me that it was two grown men whose individual prejudices resulted in a confrontation that resulted in the tragic death of a young man. It appears to me that both men were neither saints, nor solely responsible for the altercation. Fortunately for Zimmerman and unfortunately for Treyvon's family and loved ones the tragic altercation didn't leave enough evidence for a jury to convict Zimmerman of a crime beyond reasonable doubt. 

This isolated incident has sparked racial tension across the country only because of the media and other public figures like Rev. Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, who need to the feed the fire in order to stay relevant in an ever increasing tolerant world! These once great men who learned at the feet of Dr. King and marched for equality have outlived their usefulness and instead of promoting peace and greater tolerance sew the seeds of discrimination and divisiveness in order to glorify their own personal profiles and agendas. And the various media outlets of today only increase the tension by spinning lies and contention to sell a story. These people are the real villains!

 Case and point the carefully planned timing of denouncing Paula Dean because of her admittedly racist comments made 20 years ago. Very opportunistic of the media to place this story in the forefront of everyone's minds just prior to a nationally publicized trial that had been racially charged due to media hype! It is ok to decimate the career of a repentant former racist to justify the means of selling a national story of the need for more civil rights for equality!? What possible outcome can come from people rioting, or marching, or protesting the Zimmerman verdict across the nation? Greater equality in the nation or more fame to the aforementioned parties? I doubt it will change the hearts of individuals in the fight for people to judge other based on the content of their character rather than the color of their skin.

 I have read African American celebrities posts saying "obviously they don't care about us" and "We have to take care of our children!" Presumably they're not talking about all American children but African American children. Who are "They" and who is "Us"? This doesn't help promote the civil rights that came at an extremely high cost! This doesn't help people of all ethnicities come together and break down prejudices and other barriers for equality. This doesn't teach the next generation of Americans to be a little more tolerant and a little less racist than each generation before them! 

So what then, does it accomplish!? Put the "civil rights" flag down and go serve your neighbor no matter what they look like! Teach your children to have friends of all shapes, colors, cultures and religions! The ultimate definition of equality can only exist when everyone is able to eradicate prejudices from their hearts. That will happen individually, not collectively at an organized demonstration. It has to happen in our homes and in our families in order for it to happen in our hearts.

 Division will never end racism. It happens in our homes, in our families, and most of all in our hearts.  Love that kid!



  1. I agree with many points in this post. However, racism is more systemic than we want to believe or admit. If the races had been reversed in this case, there is NO doubt in my mind that (black) Zimmerman would have been convicted of killing (white) Martin. Ignoring the disparity in the justice system seems like an effort to assuage white guilt, in my opinion. "Stand your ground" laws have been notoriously racially unequal. White guy shoots his wife's lover three times in the back (killing him) and gets no prison time. Black mother of three shoots warning shot at estranged husband who is about to attack her, harming no one, and gets 20 years. These are actual cases in Florida. While race should not matter, and we would like to believe that everyone gets justice, this is simply not the case. And nothing can be done about it if we say that there is no problem.

    1. The disparity in the system that you speak of largely exists because individuals who run the system have their own prejudices. Jury members, judges, policemen, congressmen, senators, are all imperfect individuals entrusted with running this system. How do you completely overhaul the justice system without changing the hearts of individuals? I’m not ignoring the disparity but I don’t believe the “system” itself favors any particular race over another. The administrators of the system may. The purpose of the Civil Rights movement was to remove such laws as “Jim Crow” laws that made the system unequal. We fight a different battle today in order to improve equality but the media and divisive racial leaders continue to use the same rhetoric of the Civil Rights movement that claim the system needs to be changed. The racial inequality gap closes one person at a time in the hearts of the individual, who can then change the way the system is administered. You cannot change the system to change people; people have to change individually in order to improve the way justice is administered.