Trayvon Martin was not a young man carrying a gun with a history of violence. He was a young black man with two loving parents out buying snacks.

I’m not sure what the point of Mr. Hayutin’s opinion piece, “What’s Wrong with this Picture?” was except to re-enforce the mistaken idea that somehow Travon Martin’s killing was justified because there are serious problems in poor black communities.

I completely disagree with this train of thought. Trayvon Martin was not a child raised by a single mother without the presence of a husband and father.  Trayvon Martin was not a young black man living in a poverty-ridden city belonging to a gang.

Trayvon Martin was not a young man carrying a gun with a history of violence.  He was a young black man with two loving parents out buying snacks.

Why then was Trayvon killed? I believe he was killed by George Zimmerman because Mr. Zimmerman was acting on the stereotype of young black men as violent and threatening. Instead of seeing a teenager who was out to buy snacks, he saw a criminal, a danger to the community. Even when directed by the 911 operator not to get out of his car and not to follow Trayvon, Mr. Zimmerman felt compelled to confront Trayvon. Mr. Zimmerman initiated the confrontation and bears the responsibility for the death of Trayvon Martin.

There is something wrong with laws that allow a person to carry a gun, harass a person and then “Stand and Fight” because he perceives someone to be a threat, even if they are not. The racism is in the judgment that a young black man is guilty by being black.

As a teacher I’ve spent 32 years trying to help students see our biases and stereotypes so that we will not injure others based on false assumptions and fear. This is why I found this [opinion piece] to be so harmful. Trayvon Martin was the victim and, regardless of whatever problems exist in black communities, he lost his life because of a false perception he was a threat. Mr. Zimmerman’s behavior provoked the confrontation.

Barbara Cella

Del Mar

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Posted by Staff on Aug 23, 2013. Filed under Letters, Opinion. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

4 Comments for “Trayvon Martin was not a young man carrying a gun with a history of violence. He was a young black man with two loving parents out buying snacks.”

  1. Walford Sterling

    STILL perpetuating the damned lies. The 911 operator DID NOT tell Zimmerman to stay in his car. Listen to the recording. Zimmerman was already out of his car and following Trayvon when the operator asked him if he was following. You can hear him get out of the truck. You can hear him breathing as if he’s running or at least walking quickly. The operator could hear it, too, which is why he asked if Zimmerman was following, and why he said, “We don’t need you to do that.”

    Furthermore, there is absolutely zero evidence that Zimmerman continued to follow Trayvon or that he confronted Trayvon after the dispatcher advised him to stop, including the testimony of Rachel Jeantel. Trayvon died only 200 feet from Zimmerman’s truck, but 400 feet from Brandy Green’s door. Three minutes and forty seconds passed from the time the operator told Zimmerman to stop and the end of the phone call between Rachel and Trayvon. At a normal speed of 5 feet per second, Trayvon and Zimmerman had time to walk (not run, merely walk) 1100 feet in 220 seconds. If Zimmerman had continued to follow Trayvon, how could he remain so close to his truck? How do you pursue someone without going anywhere?

    Most importantly, your beatification of Saint Trayvon is the greatest lie. No, he did not have a gun. Yes, he was returning from buying snacks (and two “blunts”). But, you leave out the FACTS that Trayvon had a history of involvement in burglary, having been caught at school with stolen jewelry and burglary tools; that he is now known to have trafficked in illegal, probably stolen guns; that he is now known to have distributed marijuana and probably “lean” to minors; and that he is now known to have very recently taken a swing at a bus driver.

    I know you will now protest, “But Zimmerman didn’t know all that!” That’s right, he had no possible way of knowing Trayvon’s bad recent history, which makes it all the more remarkable that he was RIGHT to have found Trayvon suspicious. He “guessed” or “assumed” or “presumed” correctly. Trayvon was a bad kid, not just a sweet little angel coming home from the store with candy. He was a burglar, a drug dealer, and a gun trafficker.

    Now that you know all those things, why do you find it impossible to believe that Trayvon really might have been behaving in a manner that would make a reasonable person suspicious on the night of February 26th? Why do you insist on saying Zimmerman found him suspicious solely because he was black? Why, 50 years after Dr. King told us of his dream, do you insist that Trayvon must be judged by the color of his skin, not the content (or lack thereof) of his character?

  2. Florence Schiman

    People should stop talking about Race. Instead talk about the loss of a life. Talk about a WW2 vet 87 years old beaten to death or about the young couple in the south that was beaten mutilated and both victims raped, male and female, talk about the victims that are children in inner cities, babies that are shot by drive-byes. It does not matter the what part of the fifteen shades we are. Everyone is entitled to justice and peace.

  3. Nisqually

    Trayvon Martin might have had loving parents, but , when he tried to kill Martin, he demonstrated that he was not, to say the least. The “bad guy” isn’t the one who’s carrying a gun, its the one who initiates the violence, which is what Martin did. Didn’t matter if he had no prior history of violence, he was committing violence then.

  4. The Yakima Kid

    Trayvon Martin was walking behind townhouses on their patios and cutting through side yards in a high crime area at 3AM. Zimmerman had every reason to be suspicious. Martin attacked Zimmerman and was seen punching him MMA style by an eye witness.

    I guess it is considered racism now to defend yourself against a thug.

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