The trial has ended, the jurors have been dismissed, and George Zimmerman has been set free to presumably resume whatever normal life he can have. In the wake of what many view as a crime against all of the African American Community, many are wondering what it all means and where are we to go from here.
Many see a system that has failed to bring justice for a young man who was completely defenseless both in life and death. Regardless of how open and shut you believe this case should have been, a poorly argued case is bound to crumble when a person is presumed innocent until proven guilty. What needs to be done now by those who feel the most let down by this trials outcome is multifaceted.
The first and foremost thing that needs to be done is for people of color to hold themselves and future generations to a higher standard. This does not require you to come from a family of any particular socioeconomic station. It only requires that you determine that despite where you are or come from, you can still conduct yourself with dignity and mutual respect. There needs to be more expected of those who have the eyes and ears of our youth in the various mediums; i.e. the music industry, sports and entertainment industry, magazine, film and television industry have to do more to display decency, moral integrity, and a healthy well being.
Men like Dr Martin Luther King Jr and Hurricane Carter came from different places. Each faced imprisonment. Both of these men conducted themselves with the utmost respect for the system in spite of the injustice they faced. Dr King was fighting for equality of all people through non-violent methods. Although many opposed his methods and efforts, it was because of his character and conduct that he earned favor both by the government and many who had taken different measures. Though wrongly imprisoned, Hurricane Carter refused to behave as a prisoner, but as a free man who happened to be in a confined space. In time, Mr Carter was respected by both inmates and the guards, and received a was exonerated.
Secondly, there needs to be more people willing to take up the mantle and charge to work for justice for all, through the legal system; whether that leads to your becoming a lawyer, a politician, a lobbyist, a member of an organization like the NAACP, or Rainbow Push, becoming active for justice is a more positive endeavor than sitting on the sidelines complaining about what and why the system isn’t working for all equally.
No matter what has gone on in the past, what matters now is how we will respond today. We cannot continue to sit idly by and expect things to change. We also cannot expect that simply crying, bemoaning, acting as fools and degenerates with violence in the streets is an answer to this situation. There needs to be actual participation in the process of justice. This does not mean seeking revenge or retaliation. In the end, God is the ultimate judge of all. However, in the here and now, we all have a part to play in ensuring that equality is available to all.
QUESTION: How do you plan to respond in the wake of this trials decision?
- Trayvon Martin’s family reacts to verdict via social media (miamiherald.com)
- Protesters rally across US after Zimmerman acquitted of Trayvon Martin murder (telegraph.co.uk)
- George Zimmerman found not guilty of murdering unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin (independent.co.uk)
- George Zimmerman Found Not Guilty in Death of Trayvon Martin (people.com)
- Zimmerman can get gun he shot Trayvon Martin with back (thegrio.com)
- Zimmerman Not Guilty Verdict Fuels #JusticeForTrayvon on Twitter (mashable.com)
- FBI Docs Show No Zimmerman Bias (foxnews.com)
- Robert Zimmerman, Jr: Trayvon Martin Caused His Own Death [VIDEO] (newsone.com)
- Zimmerman could still be held responsible for Martin’s death (fox2now.com)