A Thought Provoking Essay.

ronalawn82(z9FL)July 21, 2013

I am still digesting the contents of this article.
Can it be the start of a wholesome conversation here?

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lily316(z5PA)

Very well written article , and I agree with everything he said. What got me was I bought my grandson that very same Hollister shirt in the photo with Trayvon and his mother.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 3:08AM
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alexrander

No, not really. I'd rather not hear white 'guilt' or whatever. Jesus we have heard these remarks for decades and it starts to get sickening- especially after a horrific event. Meanwhile they're tearing up the streets in Oakland.

Everything this kid is saying, our president said it better and in a more meaningful way. Why not link to that speech? Rather than some white guy mimicking Obama. I mean it feels like a minstrel show- song and dance but without the 'blackface'. No thank you.

Blame the gun lobby. Blame the National Rifle Association. Blame fear mongering. Blame class warfare. Blame racism, just remember that Zimmerman is Hispanic too, even a bit of Afro-Peruvian, from what I've read, and there's a lot of racism towards Hispanics in this country right now. Plenty of racism still. I wish there was this kind of uproar over Oscar Grant- well maybe with the new movie "Fruitvale Station" ...

Watched a program tonight about farm workers and the way they are treated on Bill Moyers' show.... what does this writer think or say about that ?

And certainly as a white kid and later as an adult I have had some of those dreaded experiences that this writer says doesn't happen- including being stopped by cops for just walking along a street.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 3:33AM
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tobr24u(z6 RI)

Ditto, Alexa, well said...

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 6:28AM
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pnbrown

"remember that Zimmerman is Hispanic too, "

That is an irony in the whole spinning of the unfortunate incident as an entirely black/white statement, seeing as not long ago in this country Z would not be considered white (even if he may identify himself as such) and still would not in some places, and by some.

I think race had little or nothing to with what happened.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 7:17AM
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marshallz10(z9-10 CA)

Too much "white guilt" from even those wannabe whites

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 7:51AM
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jodik_gw

We can't change the past... but we CAN learn from it and make the future better... if we want a better future.

"...the rights I take for granted are only valid if I fight to give those same rights to others."

Unless we're all thought of as American citizens, or citizens of whatever country we inhabit, and unless we all are granted and guaranteed the very same rights and freedoms, there will remain an imbalance within our society.

We really do need to work to close the gap, to ensure that every segment of our population is given equal consideration. And that includes consideration based upon gender, orientation, race, socio-economic class, and any other differences we either overtly or extraneously divide ourselves by.

And any sort of change really does begin within us.

Personally, I think this necessary public conversation is long past due. We have certain hate groups and extreme schools of thought trying hard to divert our attention away from coming together as one... as one citizenry, Americans.

The past is the past, and we should leave it lie and absolve ourselves of any guilt... for we have no control over what our ancestors did. But we do have control of ourselves and of how we think and act, and we do have control over the things we teach our offspring.

We can push those who hate and seek to divide, and those stereotypes and stigmas we hear out of the spotlight, and relegate them to the fringes, to the echoes of the past... and we can seek to change how we view one another now, in the present, and how we treat one another, and that can become our future.

Division is a part of our society. It's so much a part that we don't even see it... so much a part that it's institutionalized... but it doesn't have to be.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 10:08AM
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ronalawn82(z9FL)

For the record, I thought Mr. Zimmerman was of German extraction.
It sounds trite to remark that we tend to interpret events against the backdrop of our experiences.
I wrote this on another forum; and I can relate very many instances where a person's color was the spark that lit a fuse that caused an explosion - or sometimes, an implosion.
A gated community is a haven of safety for those within it.
All those within it!
Both Mr. Zimmerman and Mr. Martin should have no reason for fear ... provided that each was there legitimately..
From what I could glean, Mr. Martin did not display any sign of fear at first.
Mr. Zimmerman? His words betrayed an emotion that certainly was not brotherly love. Was it fear, paranoia, frustration, anger or animus?
Read THIS and we will (or can) continue the conversation.
Or maybe you have some suggested reading for me.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 6:27PM
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pnbrown

"Those reducing this tragedy to racism miss a more accurate and painful picture. Why is a child dead? The rise of âÂÂsecure,â gated communities, private cops, private roads, private parks, private schools, private playgrounds ��" private, private, private ��"exacerbates biased treatment against the young, the colored and the presumably poor."

Very well put by Mr. Benjamin. I think he pretty well nailed it.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 6:54PM
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alexrander

I enjoyed the last two links including the Guyanese gated community story.

Getting back to the original post, maybe I was too harsh to say "white guilt", maybe I should have said "white enlightenment"...

... why does a statement like:
"So I've made the choice today to tell my white friends that the rights I take for granted are only valid if I fight to give those same rights to others" , bother me?

It's like he just 'woke up' and discovered prejudice and racism and he's going to make buttons that say "hug a black man" or something...

... you know what, it sounds paternal, like now that a white man has recognized racism, he's going to take care of the problem for his black brothers?...

We still have a long way to go.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 11:21PM
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heri_cles

I agree with Benjamin about the bunker mentality. In the Zimmerman case it enabled and encouraged a pycho cop wannabe to exercise Police power over other citizens at the end of a gun.

You know, there are homeowners who could use a neighborhood watch volunteer like little Georgie on the West side of Chicago. I wonder if he would be interested in volunteering there. I would like to see how tough this fatazzed little thug really is.

There was an expression in an old Western movie I recall. It was "live by the gun, die by the gun." Maybe justice will eventually be served for Zimmerman next time he trys to bully someone, draws his weapon, but ends up drawing it too late. Boom... but oh so sorry, Mr. and Mrs. Zimmerman, it was God's will and of course, remember that Stand Your Ground defense?

This post was edited by heri_cles on Tue, Jul 23, 13 at 1:20

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 1:14AM
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ronalawn82(z9FL)

So, can we draw a few conclusions? Here is how I think.
A gated community exists because its residents have a proclivity to insularity.
This tendency has its roots in their feeling of insecurity or paranoia.
The community can be likened to an organism because it displays many of the characteristics of a living organism.
One such is the rejection of 'foreign tissue' as in an organ transplant or a transfusion of incompatible blood types.
Mr. Martin died of a deeply organic cause.
Over! (but not necessarily out!)

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 10:30PM
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alexrander

"Live by the gun, die by the gun" or "live by the sword..." whatever the expression, I see civilization is making headway.... I mean now that we're encouraging this sort of hubris. I'm not much for Biblical quotations, but this one follows nicely:

"And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell."

That would be the gun lobby.

Or maybe it's meant in the "Onward Christian Soldiers" sort of way, that is, the spiritual sword of God or shall we say "Gun of God" - Live by God's word and die with God's word ? or as William Blake wrote:

..."Bring me my Bow of burning gold;
Bring me my Arrows of desire:
Bring me my Spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire!.."

A bit ridiculous ?

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 11:49PM
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