Whatever you do, don’t read the comments on any story about Trayvon Martin… ever.
I don’t know why I keep doing this to myself. When the Trayvon story was hot some months ago, I would read a story about it everyday. And everyday I would check the comment section. Everyday I would leave said comment section highly ticked off at the ignorance of some people.
Guess what? I did it again this morning. This morning the most recent news surrounding the Trayvon story are the pictures that were released of George Zimmerman’s injuries, pictures of the gun and the crime scene, a video of Trayvon buying candy and a drink from a convenience store, and an autopsy report that proves that Trayvon had traces of marijuana in his blood.
The comment section of the article I read on CNN.com was on fire. People were chiming in to claim that this is all evidence to justify Zimmerman’s self-defense claim and that Trayvon was a “thug drug dealer” because of the marijuana in his system. Others added comments that said things like, “[expletive deleted] black people. They’ve done nothing but be a drain on society, while contributing nothing,” or referencing the black man that was arrested for the killing of two white people in Mississippi claiming “we’re even, now let it go.”
My stance on this case is pretty simple. The fact is that Zimmerman got out of his car and shot and killed an unarmed teen. Regardless of what else happened, regardless of any other facts, that is an offense that absolutely HAS to go to trial. My outrage with this whole situation was not only in Trayvon’s death, but in the fact that Zimmerman was not arrested for killing him. Do I believe Zimmerman is a racist? That’s hardly relevant. Whether racism stemmed his profiling of Trayvon or not, the kid was profiled. In that respect, I’m for all the facts being brought out. I’m for learning exactly what happened that night. Do I believe Zimmerman is guilty and should be locked up? Absolutely. And I’ll believe that until the evidence proves me wrong. That’s opposite of the “innocent until proven guilty” mantra, but I tend to have a pro-Trayvon view of what happened that night. Realistically, whether Zimmerman is locked up or not, he will never be free. If he goes to prison, he’s doomed. There are too many of “us” in prison. If he goes free, he’s doomed. There are a even more of “us” not in prison who will have a vendetta against him.
But back to the point at hand–the comments. It no longer amazes me how much white people in this country have the inclination to take the opposite stance of an angry black person and/or group of angry black people. I’ve seen it time after time. It’s happened to me. That, my friends is a form of profiling. For whatever reason, an angry black person is more often than not seen as being on the side of wrong. The media has done us no favors here. And if Jesse and Rev. Al get involved, it’s a wrap. You’ve got no shot of convincing the majority of white people that you have a legitimate case.
This is all painfully obvious in the comment section of these stories. The hidden biases that people hold can pour out of them without consequence when they can hide behind the anonymity of an online comment. So if you have any plans to have a decent day, free from rage directed toward stupid people, take my advice and stay away from them. You’ve been warned.
Until next time…