Let me give you MY bottom line and then I'll back up and tell you why.
George Zimmerman needs to at least be tried. Could this have been a tragic mistake? Yeah - but George brought it on himself.
Did you hear me?
Trayvon would still be alive today if ol' Georgie didn't play cops and robbers. So what if he was the neighborhood watchman. So what if he tutored 'young african american' kids. That made him even more responsible. Remember spiderman? 'With great power comes great responsibility.' George Zimmerman had even more responsibility to not make a harsh judgment call. He should have been the last one to judge 'a black kid in a hoodie' since he tutored them and probably has had conversations with these kids about how they feel being racially profiled.
You know what else? Too bad if he did have a broken nose and a gash in his head. This 17 year old boy was being followed by a dude he didn't know. If someone approached me in a dark alley on a rainy night, flight or fight would kick in for me too. Remember Stranger Danger? I hope he did get hurt by Trayvon. If someone approached me, I'd probably do some damage too! I walk downtown everyday and I am just waiting for a person to try and grab me. That ain't gonna fly far. They'll be hurting a lot more than me. Unless they take the easy way out like Mr. Zimmerman. Easy to be a tough guy when your the one with the gun. I bet those skittles were going to leave some real damage, huh?
So you have an option...you can start hating me now or wait until the end of this post.
I have seen some things in the news lately that have made me sick to my stomach. Like, seriously ill, I want to throw up or at least punch someone.
First of all - let me put THIS rumor to rest:
Have you seen this pic floating around? Yeah - IT'S NOT TRAYVON.
Now that that's been handled...let me tell you about my background.
I grew up in a school that had a wonderful mix of ethnicities. Did I realize it growing up? Not in the least. As a kid, I was oblivious to the fact that someone was supposedly 'different' than me because of their skin tone. I can't imagine having gone to a school that was any different. In fact, my parent's moved out of district my junior year and I still chose to stay at Godwin.
I remember one year the school brought in a traveling drama group to point out the differences in each other and how we should all get along. I remember walking out of the school auditorium in a daze because until that moment, I hadn't noticed skin color. I remember I sat next to my friend Latrice and after it was done I looked over at her and said, 'Whoa! You're black! When did that happen?!' I never realized my friends were of any different background than me. I only knew we all lived in the Godwin district, grew up together and the only differences we had were some lived with their grandparents and we played different sports.
It never dawned on me that most of our football team was 'black' because it was MY football team. We were blue and gold, the fighting Wolverines.
It never dawned on me the kids in the ESL class were different than me. They just grew up in a different country and hadn't learned English completely yet.
It never dawned on me the boys I had crushes on I 'probably shouldn't date'. People would look down on us because our skin color was different. You know what I say? SCREW THEM.
And I look at the world now and think...why are we still dealing with this?! Why is the color of our skin still an issue?! Why hasn't Martin Luther King, Jr's dream come true yet?!
“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” ~Martin Luther King, Jr.
I used to be embarrassed to say I went to Godwin...but now that I'm older, I can't be more proud to come from a school where race wasn't an issue. If it was, I had no clue, because I considered everyone a friend.
I read this blog post today and am still in shock: Our Baby is Going to Experience Racism Someday
And what about The Hunger Games racial issues flying around. I haven't read the book or seen the movie so I'll let Jen explain the angst surrounding that whole stupid issue: People who can't read
I know I'm just 'some white chick' who doesn't have a clue about what people really face. But I do. Just because I haven't experienced it first hand, I've seen it.
And it breaks my heart.
I found this video a couple weeks back and I thought it was such a great illustration for kids to learn the difference between races. You want to know what it is? Watch this video.
This is what we should be teaching our kids about the differences in each other. The other differences should solely rely on Dr. King's dream - Judge the content of character. Of each individual's character. This will eliminate racial profiling.
Please people...stop looking at people on the outside. Get to know them first and then make a judgment call based on character.
And one final note: If you're told to step off by dispatch...step off and let the real law handle it.