‘Aint I A Progressive?
Observing the George Zimmerman case peripherally, I was nonetheless crestfallen when the jurors were announced as five white and one perhaps Hispanic, women, all mothers. Florida State Attorney Angela Corey’s team is accustomed to playing against young black boys, not being on the same team let alone having to serve as chief strategist and coach for one. The silence after the inevitable verdict blasted like a cacophony, louder and louder. Even prior to that sad Saturday night, my good progressives had ostensibly vacated the field. Few have spoken up. Notably, Chris Matthews made an attempt to be empathetic but admitted he believed the jury made the correct decision, justifiable in light of the prosecutors’ arguments. Matthews reminded us that he was fiercely outraged at the decision made in the O.J. Simpson criminal trial despite considerable evidence supporting reasonable doubt. Michael Moore has been extremely present on social media repeating the popular refrain that if the protagonists’ races had been switched the verdict would have been the opposite, and helping spread word about the scores of peaceful protests that took place the following day. But a few days before the trial ended, Lawrence O’Donnell wondered on camera why people were upset by Trayvon being referred to as a suspect. Noticeably quiet, initially, were christened progressive patron saints like first black President Bill Clinton, then Newark Mayor Cory Booker and comedian Bill Maher. Their uncharacteristic silence allowed women to step into the pulpit – Joy Reid, Melissa Harris-Perry and newcomer, prosecutor Lisa Bloom. And how madonnafully did the female pundits magnify the humanity of a very typical, sugar-chugging, LeBron James loving teenager in a way the jury and many non-blacks seemingly could not. Ms. Rachel Jeantel, guilty of nothing but being a black female child of immigrants, living in an inner city and attending an inner city school, even she was resurrected and redeemed after the trial, explaining to “old” Americans that Zimmerman seemed to be a predator and pedophile in her, and likely, Trayvon’s eyes. Ms. Jeantel makes a compelling point. http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/07/george_zimmerman_sex_abuse.php If only the prosecutors had argued that, or coached her prior to her taking the stand, or at least mentioned Trayvon was an honor student who looked forward to being an aviator. http://www.inquisitr.com/832039/was-trayvon-martin-an-honor-student-with-a-3-7-gpa/
I graduated from law school the year O.J. was acquitted. Even so, I never watched the proceedings because I knew firsthand juries can be unpredictable and I do not continuously re-live tragedy well. When uninitiated, i.e. white, folks would ask me about O.J, trying to bait me into the conversational equivalent of a sinkhole, impatiently propped, waiting to for the “gotcha” moment they could proclaim, shout from the mountaintop “see we’re all racist;” I would simply reply I thought he would be acquitted but would never again be free. The NRA, ALEC, Mr. Zimmerman and your congregants take heed.
Our country is in an economic Depression brought about by wealthy white men at a time the country is no longer majority white. http://www.upworthy.com/think-racism-isn-t-an-issue-anymore-oh-have-i-got-an-infographic-for-you-css?c=ufb1 Black voters turned out at a higher rate in the 2008 and 2012 elections. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/04/29/black-turnout-was-higher-than-white-turnout-in-2012-and-2008/ Our President is black but continues to ignore basic civil rights issues keenly affecting black and brown people. http://colorlines.com/archives/2013/06/why_the_spying_scandal_is_a_serious_racial_justice_issue.html People who use the term “minority” no matter what color, always strike me as baptized proselytes, messily soaked and dripping in racist inferiority/superiority doctrine. Calling someone a “minority” whether in the media or casual conversation, is a warning flag that informs a Philistine has been steeped and stained by the belief that whiteness is the standard that all others must strive to. In truth, black Africans make up the majority of people on earth no matter what you’ve read or been told. Ideas, thoughts and oft repeated mistruths color expectations, emotions, psyches, futures, lives. Rachel Jeantel says in the future she’d like to work in Criminal Justice. Sanford County, Florida sure could have used her.