By Alan Caruba
I can only speak for myself, but I want to be relieved of having to change the channels in order to get away from too much talk about Trayvon Martin and too much talk about George Zimmerman.
From all that I have read and heard, Trayvon was a wannabe street thug with a taste for drugs, tossed out of school a couple of times, and George was a wannabe police officer who ended up on his back, getting his head pounded into the cement, and concluded Trayvon might just kill him. George should have left after calling the police. Trayvon should have kept going too. But people make bad decisions and it sometimes gets them killed or on trial.
The trial was a self-defense case from start to finish. That’s what the jury found even though Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law wasn’t even introduced by Zimmerman’s attorneys and, even though race was not introduced as a factor during the trial by either the prosecution or defense.
The trial, though, was all about race.
As a student of history, I and others can tell you that race has always been a factor in the life of the nation. In America it divided the states and required a horrendous war to resolve. Even then, after the end of the Civil War and for a century more, despite Constitutional amendments to end slavery and extend full citizenship, race remained an ugly factor, especially in the South where Jim Crow laws were especially obnoxious. In the 1960s the nation had to revisit the issue of civil rights.
I know all that, but I still want the endless discussions about race to end now that the jury has arrived at a perfectly common sense conclusion that Zimmerman, straddled—not by a “child”, but by full grown young man—had no real option other than to shoot him or risk suffering further injury and possibly death.
I know I am contributing to the millions of words written and spoken about this case at this point and I wish I were not. I don’t want to write about how weary I am of the media orgy that continues to feed off the way a minor incident in Sanford, Florida, metastasized into a trial and a national discussion of what has been discussed to death—race relations.
It is passing strange to me that the killings of white men and women, boys and girls—often killed almost randomly—have not evoked such supposed “outrage” in neither the black, nor white, community. Indeed, they are treated as little more than brief local news. Why do we expect, barely report, and not even publicly condemn such killings when the racial component is reversed?
Whites watched the Saturday protest rallies in cities across the nation with the resignation that comes with having concluded that nothing they say or do is going to have any effect on this kind of political, racial, kabuki theatre. Indeed, the Zimmerman-Martin affair was deliberately turned into a political event even though local police investigating it had concluded no crime had been committed. That was the jury’s conclusion as well.
What rankles are the “Justice for Trayvon” posters and chants. Trayvon Martin got justice. George Zimmerman got justice.
What Zimmerman has not gotten is a President who should not have intruded himself before and after the trial. I don’t really care that Obama is the first black President, even though he is half-white. He should have kept himself out of the discussion. Instead his community organizer instincts and not his degree in law kicked in. Nothing he said before and after the trial was helpful and all seemed to have little purpose than to stir up the divided passions on both sides, black and white.
I do not want to hear or read any more of this event. I do not want to hear more about Trayvon Martin. I do not want to hear more about George Zimmerman.
This nation is on a runaway train to the kind of bankruptcy that we just saw occur in Detroit. If it isn’t reversed—insane government borrowing and spending—then it won’t matter what color you are.
© Alan Caruba, 2013