You know, I had started this whole long thing earlier today about the shooting to death of Trayvon Martin. I had all these reasons and lists and… you know what, fuck it. I am disgusted. By the lies, by the evasions, by the whining about “what about meeeee???” from certain quarters. I’m sick of it. The making fun of his name, the mocking of his parents, the frantic searching for anything to make it look like the kid deserved to be shot (OMG! He might have attacked George Zimmerman first! With, um, his fists. That totally lets Zimmerman off the hook for being the one with the gun, right?), the weak attempt to disown Zimmerman because his mother was from Peru as a get whitey out of racism accusations card, the bizarre deflections onto “all those other black kids killed by other black kids” as if that had fuckall to do with what happened to Trayvon Martin — all of it.
I’m also sick of the complete ignorance about the state of Florida where I was born and raised and basically lived for nearly fifty fucking years, most of them in Miami, and the last ten in the Central Florida area until I moved to Virginia in 2009. In short, no, asshole, Sanford is not a “seedy little gator hunting town.” It’s part of the Greater Orlando area and also the administrative center of Seminole County. I got my associates degree at Seminole Community College (now Seminole State College). I had friends who lived there. I lived there for a while. It’s mostly very bland and suburban. It’s not perfect, but it’s not a cute stereotype of wacky Florida either.
But enough of Reality 101. Thanks to the incompetence of the Sanford police department, we’ll probably never get the truth now. I still can’t believe they just let Zimmerman go. Sorry, even if it was an accident — like the gun just went off by itself because evil elves or I don’t know, there was still a dead body on the ground and you don’t just send the gun owner home, you take him into custody. I don’t even know if racism had anything to do with it — this looked more like sheer stupidity. They even had the 911 call where the dispatcher told him not to get out of the car. (Or rather, said “we don’t need you to do that.” Which puzzles me. What, is this Japan all of a sudden? English is a declarative language and our culture allows us to state things bluntly. When your volunteer cop who already had a reputation for being, say, a little over-alert, asks if he should leave his car and physically confront an unknown “suspicious” male you don’t kinda sorta say he can maybe not do that, you say “NO. STAY IN THE CAR.”)
But it all comes down to in any other circumstance with a dead kid on the ground who had no gun, and a man standing over him with the death weapon in his hand, the man would be in the back of the squad car with cuffs on. George Zimmerman had the gun, Trayvon Martin ended up dead of being shot by it, and Zimmerman was just told to go home because the cops were “satisfied” with his story. What the hell is that. That’s wrong is what that is. I don’t care who punched who. I don’t care about that stupid law (a law that apparently allows someone to shoot an unarmed person is a stupid law). I don’t care what ethnic groups were involved. I don’t care what your politics are. I don’t care about white people status games using dead ethnics as pawns. I don’t care about your need to deflect your racism and/or fears of being called a racist onto someone else. I don’t care.
Update: okay, from the conservative side, here is the most level-headed analysis of the case I’ve come across so far. I really haven’t come across anything useful from liberal blogs, though right now I’m tending to side with them when it comes to condemning the disgusting racist things many conservative bloggers are saying. Basically, just because the kid may have smoked pot and talked smack among his friends doesn’t mean he deserved to die. Attack a guy who has a gun? Your life is in your hands. But that still doesn’t get the guy with the gun off — it’s not like Zimmerman had to be there in the first place. He should have stayed in the car and waited for the cops.
But. Liberal bloggers really aren’t helping either. As Steve points out, liberal restrictions on gun laws and their tendency to want to coddle criminals just ends up hurting the people they claim to want to help most. Conservatives may be jerks, but liberals are useless.