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Every year far more Americans lose their lives in street crimes than died in 9/11. The reason you hear so much about 9/11 is because President Bush, never one to miss an opportunity, blew it up for political gain.
Trayvon Martin, a 17-year-old boy visiting his father in a gated community in Sanford, Florida, was walking back from the store armed with only an iced tea and a bag of Skittles when the neighbourhood watchman, George Zimmerman, shot him dead. Zimmerman, amazingly, claimed self-defence. Even more amazing, the police did not doubt it!
I stumbled upon this while keeping tabs on the Trayvon Martin case. It’s written by Kathleen “Texas Sparkle” McKinley, who currently blogs on the Houston Chronicle.
I want as many POC to share their thoughts on this before I say anything. The portions in bold are my own emphasis.
Does Trayvon Martin = Emmett Till?
Emmett Till was a young boy, just at the cusp of his manhood. Just learning how to appreciate the beauty in a woman, and to articulate his appreciation. He was murdered in cold blood for trying to pass the threshhold towards the goal of his black manhood. He was forever denied the chance to mature. In other words, he was a boy shot down dead in the gates on August 28, 1955.
“If I could take all my parts with me when I go somewhere, and not have to say to one of them, “No, you stay home tonight, you won’t be welcome,” because Im going to an all white party where I can be gay, but not Black. Or I’m going to a Black poetry reading, and half the poets are antihomosexual, or thousands of situations where something of what I am cannot come with me. The day all the different parts of me can come along, we would have what I would call a revolution.” ~Pat Parker
When my mom first told me she was a lesbian, I was 16 years old and in my Junior year of high school. I remember she asked my older sister and me to come into the living room because she wanted to talk. She looked so serious and slightly concerned that my best guess was that she was pregnant. Clearly, I was off the mark. When she hesitantly told us her news, I think part of her was expecting us to be upset, despite knowing she raised us to react better than that. Perhaps she recognized there’s a difference between teaching your kids to be tolerant and actually being the person they need to “tolerate”.
Tuesday March 20, 2012 was the start of The Dovetail Project. This is my 5th class of fathers and 61 fathers have graduated from the program out of two years. This was a big day for me and I was wondering if all my hard work paid off. I was recruiting on Facebook, in the hood and tweeting like crazy. It was time to see if anyone of the young fathers that I talked to would come out to be a better father.
White Mississippi teenager Deryl Dedmon has been sentenced to life in prison for murder and committing a hate crime, after running over 49 year-old James Craig Anderson with a pickup truck.
As you may recall, Dedmon and some friends were out partying last June 26th when he got the bright idea of hunting down a black person to harass. They stumbled upon James Anderson at a gas station and beat him mercilessly, before Dedmon hopped back into his truck and ran him over, killing him.
Two years ago Lisa Iyotte, a rape survivor of Sicangu Lakota and White Clay descent, stood at a White House podium and explained why the Tribal Law and Order Act President Barack Obama was poised to sign was so significant. Between long pauses and persistent tears, she recounted how she was beaten and raped in front of her daughters on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota 16 years prior.
Miami Herald is reporting Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee has temporarily removed himself from office Thursday, a day after city commissioners gave him a vote of no confidence.
Nothing exists in a vacuum, so when looking at the tragic shooting death of unarmed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida because he appeared ‘suspicious’ to a self-appointed Neighborhood Watch captain named George Zimmerman, it can not be viewed in isolation. It’s part of something that’s much larger and systemic.
Many of us don’t like to admit it, but the fact is, this country has a long and sordid history where those who appeared ‘different’, meaning not white and male, were often deemed suspiciousresulting in deadly consequences. Call it a Culture of Suspicion if you will, but it one that’s helped shaped social and political policy and impacted damn near everything we’ve done throughout the years.
Outrage continues to grow over the killing of the unarmed African-American teenager Trayvon Martin in Florida last month. On Wednesday, Martin’s parents, Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, joined thousands of people for a “million hoodie” march in New York City.
At 9:45 p.m. on Friday March 16th, 19 year old Anthony Scott was called over to a parked car and then shot point blank. He was transported to St. Francis Hospital where he was pronounced brain dead and on Sunday March 18th his mother made the devastating decision to take her son off of life support. Anthony was dead. He was among the more than 50 people shot and/or killed in Chicago over the weekend. There have been no marches and there is no outrage over this.
Those tweets, though unpremeditated, were intentional in their irony and seriousness. I did not write them to score cheap points, much less to hurt anyone’s feelings. I believed that a certain kind of language is too infrequently seen in our public discourse. I am a novelist. I traffic in subtleties, and my goal in writing a novel is to leave the reader not knowing what to think. A good novel shouldn’t have a point.
My heart has been heavy since I heard about Trayvon Martin. I’ve read all the coverage and signed all the petitions. I’ve talked about it with family and friends and sat my own teenaged son down for yet another “talk.” I have read the commentary of a lot of very smart people on this case that make the historical and social intellectual connections better than I could have. Like Mark Anthony Neal, here. R. L’Heureux Lewis here. And the Crunk Feminist Collective here.
John McWhorter offered up a smart and quite incisive piece about the murder of Trayvon Martin in today’s edition of the New York Daily News. His lede? a kind mention of me, “Chauncey DeVega.” I have at times disagreed with Dr. McWhorter’s opinions regarding folks such as Herman Cain, as well as black cultural politics, more generally. However, I have a deep respect for his thinking and argumentation.