Clarence V. McKee's Perspective:
I get so tired of racial hypocrisy.
The George Zimmerman trial is a reminder of one sad fact — in America a black life has more value when taken by a white than by another black.
Trayvon Martin was black. Zimmerman is not. In census jargon, he was a “white” Hispanic.
Martin’s problem that fateful night in February 2012 was that he was “WWB” — walking while black, and wearing a hoodie to boot. The hidden fear of many parents of young black males is that either while WWB or “DWB” — driving while black, they will be targeted by police or others.
Even after his parents, reported him missing, his body still remained in the morgue for three days as a “John Doe”— just another dead black teenager.
Thankfully, Martin’s parents were persistent in seeking justice and action by local authorities. They asked for others to get involved and seek justice for their son — they never made it about race.
What really spurred the national uproar when local officials first refused to charge Zimmerman with any crime was the fact that Martin was the black victim and Zimmerman, even if Hispanic was the “white” shooter.
Regardless of the jury ‘s verdict, before the trial even started and any evidence was introduced, Zimmerman was tried and convicted in a sea of racial politics by much of the black civil rights and political establishments and the mainstream media.
Congresswoman Frederica Wilson, D-Fla., who represents Martin’s hometown of Miami Gardens, said that “Trayvon was hunted down like a rabid dog; he was shot in the street; he was racially profiled.”
She was not alone:
- There were marches and protests by national civil rights leaders, Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and black politicians shouting “justice for Trayvon”;
- The Miami Heat team had a photo with them wearing “hoodies.”
- The president of the United States said “Trayvon could be my son.”
The mounting political pressure resulted in Zimmerman eventually being charged with second degree murder.
Would any of this have happened if Zimmerman were black? Would anyone but their families have cared?
It seems that if you are in an uproar over a white killing a black; why not show the same outrage when countless numbers of blacks, including innocent little children, are killed by other blacks on a daily basis?
For example, over the Fourth of July holiday, more than 60 people were wounded and nearly a dozen were killed in Chicago alone.
The real tragedy is that if Trayvon had been shot by another black male in his South Florida hometown of Miami Gardens, it may have gone unnoticed by the same celebrities, civil rights leaders and entertainers who rallied around him in the Sanford tragedy.
In the past five years, Miami Gardens has ranked among the top Miami-Dade cities with the highest murder rates per 100,000 residents. It’s young and dynamic Mayor Oliver Gilbert, a lifelong resident, has said:
“We won’t allow an entire community of people to be identified by the horrible actions of a small minority of people . . . Most of the people in Miami Gardens are great decent people.”
With Gilbert’s leadership, members of the clergy have called for an end to the violence; police have hosted meetings with local crime watch groups and ministers and city leaders have held vigils in memory of victims.
The victims include the “Trayvons” that those rushing to protest the Sanford killing — including Wilson — never heard of or apparently cared about.
A few of them were listed in The Miami Herald:
- An eight-month pregnant mother who succumbed to her injuries after being shot on her boyfriend’s porch. The unborn baby did not survive.
- A high school football player gunned down while he sat in a car in front of his friend’s house.
- A local car wash owner killed while trying to stop a robbery.
- A corrections officer shot dead in front of his home.
So why not the same national protests and calls for action by these black leaders, politicians, Obama, and concern in the mainstream media for the national plague of black on black youth crime in Chicago and other cities such as Miami Gardens?
Why no mass protests or marches from celebrities, athletes, and politicians rallying around and supporting Mayor Gilbert and his police force to put an end to such violence?
Why no calls to the president and the attorney general’s Community Relations Service to invest hundreds of millions of dollars for mayors and local law enforcement in Miami Gardens and other cities to launch an all-out war on such urban violence as the administration is doing to educate and sign up people on Obamacare?
Don’t hold your breath.
Most of these black on black killings occur in poorer inner city neighborhoods.
A new study by Georgetown University's Center for Applied Research shows that Obama has actually mentioned the poor less frequently (26 percent) than any of his modern predecessors in the Oval Office.
It is fine to demand justice for Trayvon in Sanford and let a jury decide on Zimmerman’s guilt or innocence.
But, it is hypocrisy to make such demands when a white kills a black; yet remain silent when black youths are killed by other black youths.
Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as the Reagan presidential campaigns and has appeared on many national and local media outlets. Read more reports from Clarence V. McKee — Click Here Now.
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