This is a blog for journalists, authors, and those who enjoy reading and learning. Here you will find a variety of posts about all forms of writing--from fiction and non-fiction to the news media and journalism. It is produced by a former foreign correspondent and journalism school dean.
(To receive automatic updates of my blog just enter your e-mail address in the box below and please check out the www.ronaldyatesbooks.com website)
For the past few days I have resisted weighing in on the
George Zimmerman murder case and the fact that he was found not guilty of both Second
Degree Murder and Manslaughter charges.
It is a verdict that doesn't sit well with many. But it is,
nevertheless, the verdict. And no amount of rioting, looting and breast beating
will change that.
Of course, Americans have become accustomed to seeing turgid
goons rampaging through city streets on the heels of just about any trial perceived
to involve race. It has become almost a given that stores will be burned and
looted. How that helps the victims in these cases remains a mystery.
But hey, when you have an excuse to get "free
stuff" from "cracker" and
"Buddha-head" store owners why not go for it. After all, don't they
deserve it? So go ahead and smash those windows and take a few flat screen TVs
in Oakland, Cal. That'll show those Florida Gomers that they can't get away
with letting white/hispanic man go free for shooting a 17-year-old black guy in
Anti-Zimmerman Protesters After Verdict
That is what the evidence in this case revealed. One evening
in February 2012 George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch captain, confronted
Trayvon Martin who was walking through an area that had experienced home
invasions and break-ins in the past several weeks. Testimony and evidence
revealed that an altercation began with Martin knocking Zimmerman to the ground
and pounding his head into the concrete walkway. Zimmerman, with Martin on top
of him, managed to pull a pistol and shoot Martin in the heart, killing him
It was terrible tragedy--one that I am confident Zimmerman
will regret for the rest of his life. But he had a right to defend himself and
that is what he did. Criminal case closed.
Now, comes round two. With the Obama White House intent on
exacting some kind of retribution on Zimmerman, Attorney General Eric Holder vowed
Monday to proceed with a civil rights inquiry.
In his first public comments since Saturday's jury verdict,
Holder told a convention of the nation's largest black sorority that the
federal government is "determined to meet division and confusion with
understanding and compassion – and also with truth. The Justice Department
shares your concern. I share your concern," Holder told the Delta Sigma
Theta delegates to thunderous applause.
Talk about preaching to the choir. What else could Holder
say? Had he declined to persecute (whoops, I mean prosecute) Zimmerman for
violating Martins civil rights. He would have been shouted off the podium.
The portrayal of Trayvon
Martin as an "innocent child" is ludicrous.He was on his way to
becoming a thug or even worse, a gang banger.
Police records that were suppressed before and during the trial show that
Martin was suspended three times for
'drugs, truancy, graffiti and theft. In addition, it appears he even attacked a
Trayvon Martin: Innocent Child?
Trayvon was kicked out of school after he was caught with a
'burglary tool' and a bag full of women's jewelry.
Child? Innocent? I will let you decide that one.
No matter how you slice it, anytime there is an issue
involving a white person (or in this case, a half Hispanic-White person) and a
black person, the race baiters will crawl out from under their rocks to accuse
whites of racism. Of course blacks are NEVER racists. Right? Wrong.
As black journalist and author Kevin Jackson put it
"To get a race of
people to riot over a case of an overzealous neighborhood watchman shooting and
killing a teen who attacked him takes some doing. If you remove the race
elements from this story, black people would have as much interest in this case
as they would reruns of The Lawrence Welk Show.
"Yet here we are.
The Zimmerman case front and center—a 21st Century OJ trial, except this one
black people want the defendant declared guilty. Thousands of black teens have
been murdered since Martin’s death, yet Liberals have chosen to fixate on
Martin’s death? Black Liberals should ask themselves why they have
disproportionate emotion in this case versus the thousands of others.
"Recall the young girl, Hadiya Pendleton who had visited with Obama at the White House, then two weeks later was unceremoniously gunned down in a drive-by shooting in Chicago? If only her murderer had been Zimmerman!"
Meanwhile, life as an average guy in the Florida suburbs has
ended for George Zimmerman. Some people have vowed vigilante justice against
him. My brother will likely live in fear for the rest of his life, his
brother Robert Zimmerman Jr., told CNN Sunday.
George Zimmerman: What Now?
"There are people who would want to take the law into
their own hands as they perceive it, or be vigilante's in some sense," he
told CNN. "They think that justice was not served, they won't respect the
verdict no matter how it was reached and they will always present a threat to
George and his family."
So what are the lessons learned here? Number one: Don't
volunteer to be a neighborhood watch captain. And if you do, do not carry a
Instead, allow yourself to be beaten senseless with possible
brain damage for asking a hoodie-wearing 6-foot tall black teenager what he is
doing in your neighborhood. It's the least you can do in order not to be
accused of being racist.
It's the same mindset that materializes when a white person publicly
criticizes President Obama or his caustic policies. Beware, because once you
do, you will forever be branded a racist.
But you know what, I don't care. Because the term "racist"
has become so diluted by its relentless overuse for any perceived affront,
slight, or transgression that it has lost all meaning.
I am no longer sure just what racism is. One thing I do know is this: Racism is not a man acting in self-defense to protect life and limb, which
is what the jury, after weighing tons of evidence, found in the George
Zimmerman trial. Case closed!