By Paolo von Schirach
August 23, 2013
WASHINGTON – The Florida killing of Black teenager Trayvon Martin by White (actually half Hispanic) George Zimmerman was successfully reinterpreted by all the self-appointed civil rights leaders as racially motivated and therefore as yet one more piece of evidence of Whites oppressing a defenseless Black minority. No, America, contrary to what you believe, racism was not abolished by the civil rights legislation passed back in the 1960s. No, oppression motivated by prejudice is still there. And the killing of Trayvon Martin reconfirmed this sad truth. Even President Obama, himself half Black, had to intervene in order to stress this point. He did say that it is totally understandable that Black Americans would look at the Trayvon Martin killing through the lenses of a long and painful history of segregation, oppression and persistent racism. There you have, this was a racially motivated killing, even the President said so, sort of.
Assumed racial bias
What is most extraordinary in all this is that the racial bias that supposedly motivated George Zimmerman to target and then murder Trayvon Martin has neither been alleged nor proven by the prosecution during the lengthy trial in which the State sought to have Zimmerman convicted of second degree murder. But it does not matter. Since racial bias on the part of the killer is a critical element to justify the narrative of a racially motivated murder, it is simply assumed. And here we see how a convenient invention becomes “fact”, at least for all those who want reality to fit their pre-formed ideas.
Blacks killing Whites? Not interesting
Well, in order to have a closer look at how this selective outrage works, fast forward to the killing of Christopher Lane, an Australian student in Oklahoma. A fairly detailed CBS News website account of how this innocent jogger was targeted by three “bored” teenagers and shot dead, omits the rather significant detail that two of the three, including the alleged shooter, are Black. Furthermore, no mention that said shooter, according to the police, was dancing and joking after he was arrested. Needless to say, no reaction on the part of the Black leaders. So, there you have it: White killing Black, an outrage. Black killing White, just another murder.
What if Lane had been Black and his killer White?
Now, imagine a different scenario, with the races of the key characters flipped. Imagine that the innocent jogger had been Black and his killer, (who, after being apprehended appears remorseless, making fun of the whole thing), White. Occurring right after the tempest caused by the George Zimmerman trial, do you think that the media and the Black leaders would have failed to point out that this murder would be indeed further evidence of the climate of intimidation created by White violence constantly visited on a defenseless Black Community?
Sure enough, the dynamics of the two incidents are quite different. It would appear, so far at least, that the Oklahoma shooters did not have any special agenda in mind. Most incredibly, the claim is that they were “bored” and that therefore they killed someone just because they needed a bit of thrill. But even in the case of George Zimmerman, as indicated above, there is no shred of evidence that in the fateful evening in which he shot and killed Trayvon Martin he had gone out with the goal of killing a Black person.
The established prejudice needs to be reaffirmed, the facts are irrelevant
Be that as it may, none of this matters. Facts do not matter. What matters is that there is an established narrative of persistent White on Black violence motivated by deep racial hatred. The Trayvon Martin killing was consciously cherry picked and conveniently reinterpreted so that it would fit that narrative. The killing of Christopher Lane in Oklahoma obviously cannot be reinvented. Therefore, while talked about for a few days, it will simply be ignored.
This is how we conduct our mature national conversation on race, violence, and our totally untethered, amoral youth who go out and kill total strangers, apparently just for fun.