Forgiveness After The Slaughter
Black people have been programmed to think that it is some kind of virtue for us to always take the higher ground when we’ve been wronged. You see it a lot when some poor soul who has spent the last twenty years behind bars convicted of a crime they didn’t commit. When evidence is uncovered that their DNA didn’t match the DNA sample that was recovered from the crime scene after years of legal hurdles put up by the prosecutor’s office to keep the truth from seeing light, the poor guy who has had his life stolen from him will say something virtuous like he’s not mad at anybody and just gives thanks to Jesus for never losing his faith that one day he would be set free.
While people want to point to this guy as a model of civil behavior and the epitome of understanding, our larger society is never so forgiving and understanding to black people. It’s pretty rare to hear somebody say that they forgive the black man they believed has committed a crime against them. Hello No! Black people are more likely the scapegoat for somebody else’s crime. How many times have we heard some white woman claim that a black man stole her children from the back of her car only to realize that the woman killed her children herself? I might be wrong so I won’t say it’s a fact, but I’ve never heard anyone say that the black man did me wrong but I forgive him because somebody has so much faith in Jesus. The black man is rarely forgiven or given a break. It is standard procedure to come down on black people with the heaviest hand available, whether they or guilty or not, which explains why so many innocent black people get released from jail.
So it wasn’t much of a surprise to see Trayvon Martin’s mother offer a few words of understanding to killer man Zimmerman. After weeks of freedom after he murdered Trayvon under very suspicious and dubious circumstances, George Zimmerman was finally charged with second degree murder and was finally in police custody. Zimmerman says that he killed the young black teenager in self defense because after Zimmerman got out of his SUV to run after Trayvon on foot armed with his nine millimeter pistol, Trayvon decided to attack Zimmerman with a bag of Skittles and a can of iced tea. Zimmerman said that Trayvon knocked him down with a punch that broke his nose and then jumped on top of him to bash the back of his head into the sidewalk. And then Zimmerman claimed that while he was on the verge of blacking out from Trayvon’s attack, he remained conscious enough to scream for somebody to help as he maneuvered his hand to his concealed weapon and killed Trayvon with a single shot to the chest.
At least that was one of the stories that were told. Another one has Trayvon coming out of the shadows and telling Zimmerman that he was about to die. After he made his announcement like some over the top bad guy from a Dolemite movie, Trayvon then went after Zimmerman’s concealed weapon because even though Zimmerman never pulled the weapon out, somehow Trayvon knew it was there. There was a struggle between the two men that wound up with Trayvon being accidentally shot.
Regardless of what story or stories or combination of stories he told to the police, the authorities quickly wrapped up their investigation and declared the incident an open and shut case of self defense based on Florida’s stand your ground law. Zimmerman went home and Trayvon’s body went to the morgue for three days before his parents were allowed to claim him.
Now I’m a parent. In about a dozen years my son will be Trayvon’s age. What in the world would possess me to forgive somebody who would shoot my defenseless son as he walked home from the convenience store minding his own business? Not a goddamn thing is the answer that comes quickly to my mind. Why would I want to offer compassion to a man that started stalking my son as he walked home because he looked suspicious, a man that looked down on my son because he was black and wearing a hooded sweatshirt with the hood up because of the light rain that was coming down? What could possibly motivate me to show sympathy to the man that had no sympathy for my son?
Then after he slaughtered my son, why would I forgive the man that would then slander my boy? The man with the smoking gun tells the police that my son attacked him. I hear the 9-1-1 tapes of my son screaming for help. I recognize my son’s voice. But the man that murdered my son says that the voice on the tape wasn’t my boy screaming for help. Zimmerman claims it was his voice screaming at the top of his lungs as he took aim at my son’s chest and pulled the trigger.
I don’t know Sybrina Fulton, Trayvon’s mother. I don’t know why she would say that she believed that the shooting of her son was an accident. Maybe she misspoke. Maybe she meant something totally different. But when I saw her say that she believed that the shooting of Trayvon was an accident and all she wanted was an apology, I could’ve reached through my television and slapped her out of her delusion to appear as upright and moral as possible. She probably didn’t want to look like just another angry black woman because that’s a racist and sexist stereotype against black women that has all kinds of connotations.
But the truth of the matter is that Ms. Fulton has lost her son because of the actions of a single individual with delusions of grandeur. She has every right to be angry and to focus that anger on the man that took her son’s life. She doesn’t have to forgive him and she doesn’t have to wait for George Zimmerman to apologize to her. Mr. Zimmerman has already exercised too much control of her life. Sever that link and be done. If that was my son, Zimmerman could apologize until he was blue in the face and I’d still want him to rot in hell for the rest of his life and the rest of his unnatural life.
Me show compassion for my son’s killer if I was in this situation? Fuck that shit!