By now many of you have more than likely heard about the shooting of the black unarmed teenager by the name of Treyvon Martin. He was walking back to his father’s girlfriends house after buying a tea and some Skittles at the store, when a self appointed neighborhood watchman chased him down and eventually shot and killed him. Claiming self defense, the shooter George Zimmerman, has not been arrested due to Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law. There are many questions in the minds of people as to why Zimmerman has not been arrested and the very questionable acts of the Sanford, FL police department. Since all of this has happened, there have been rallies where thousands have attended calling for justice for Treyvon Martin with the arrest of George Zimmerman. The police chief, Bill Lee, has also stepped down. Most do not think that is enough, he should actually be fired. To the masses of all races, the senseless killing of Treyvon is a classic case of racial profiling. If Treyvon had he been a young white male, he would probably still be alive today.
My intent on writing this post is not to recount the tragic events of the killing of Treyvon. My motivation for this post is the response to a comment I received on my personal Facebook timeline after posting these words: “ This whole Treyvon Martin thing has me all messed up in the head. Will someone please explain to me how a young man is dead for no reason, police know who did it and no arrest has been made? Sad…so sad…” Many of my friends who commented felt the same way I did but I was surprised by one. Here is part of what was said:
Them: ”You should be careful not to draw conclusions or assumptions on what the media has presented you. They have their own agenda and goals.”
Me: “All I know is an unarmed young boy is dead and no arrest has been made. That is all I need to know.”
Them: ”Young men die every single day and the media doesn’t splash it across every television screen. The only difference here is that the shooter is a middle aged white guy rather than someone less attractive to sensationalizing.”
Me: I am not going to argue or debate this issue with you (name omitted). I have my opinion and you have yours. The shooter is Hispanic by the way.
At this point another friend of mine posted a response to this person’s comments and they replied with a response that is too long to post here. To sum it up, they insulted me as a person involved with social media for not understanding the “manipulative effects” of the media and questioned whether I was so passionate about other useless killings that are not headlines on the news. I still did not agree with this person on their opinion of the Martin shooting but responded only by expressing my disapproval of attacking me as a person. Regardless of the topic, I do try to respect people for their opinions whether I agree with them or not. The truth of the matter is, there are many issues that I care and are passionate about. I use my Facebook profile to express only a small part of who Belinda is.
Since the time of this conversation, I started to think about what this Facebook friend had to say about why this case. What is the agenda of mainstream media? Well, I can not speak for the media or anyone else. I can only speak about what I have experienced and this is what I see. I see a majority of America that is pissed off about this case and know in their hearts that if Treyvon had been white, this probably would not have happened. They have heard the 911 tapes of the racial slurs Zimmerman made about the young boy and the young man’s screams for help. The majority of decent Americans are disgusted and want justice served to this killer. What I see on my social media outlets are my friends of all races standing up for what is right. The arrest of George Zimmerman for the racially motivated killing of Treyvon Martin is what is right and they all know it!
Since the election of Barack Obama, as our first African American President, race relations have been brought to the forefront and those who are against the election of a black President do not try and hide it. Bumper stickers stating “Do not re-nig” and photos of the most powerful man in the world with watermelon, fried chicken and food stamps have become more of the norm than not. As a country, we should all be appalled by these things but many are not! Why? Because he is a politician? Maybe the death of Treyvon Martin is being highlighted in the media to show us how far we really have not come as a country. That we have a lot more work to do to achieve “The Dream” that Dr. Martin Luther King wanted to see. Treyvon was not a politician. He was a normal 17 year old kid going to the store to get some snacks and going back to a home where he was supposed to be. Those of us who are touched by his death know that this could have easily been our child.
I am not naive enough to think that this will make those who are already racists see the light, but I think it is bringing those of us who are not together in a unified manner. Isn’t that what this country needs? To have more understanding and tolerance for one another? I am a firm believer that if we all learned to care for one another more, this world would be a much better place to be. Hating a person of any race, religion or sexual preference is wrong. I do not care who is doing the hating. As we continue to fight for the justice of Treyvon, let’s not let his death go in vain. Let’s learn to love one another for our differences, instead of tearing each other apart for them .