Since George Zimmerman’s recent arrest and arraignment on charges of aggravated assault, battery and criminal mischief all I have thought about is how different this outcome is than when he shot and killed Trayvon Martin. Don’t get me wrong I am glad he was arrested on these charges; domestic violence should never be ignored, but it makes you wonder. Why is it that it took six weeks for Zimmerman to be arrested when he shot and killed an unarmed black male, but is immediately arrested on far less serious charges when the crime is perpetrated against a white female? The answer sadly is that even now, in 2013, the life of a white woman is still worth more than that of a black male’s.
Full disclosure; I am a white female, but I am also the wife of an African American man and the mother of a biracial child. When I first heard about Trayvon Martin being killed it made me worry about my son. He fit the general description of Martin; he was 17, large and tall, darker skinned, and often wore a hoodie. Apparently fitting this description makes you a threatening individual that one must use deadly force against. Then when Zimmerman was acquitted it felt like open season had been declared on African American males. Yes, many were outraged by the lack of action by the police, and then by the subsequent acquittal, but so many were not. So many people believed that Zimmerman was justified in killing Martin simply because he was a ‘scary black man’. It made me wonder how many people would now say he was justified in his actions towards his white girlfriend? The answer is none. No one has said it was because of the way she dresses, or because he ignored his instructions, or because she was in the wrong place. No, nobody is blaming the victim this time.
Perhaps the best place to view the difference of coverage is Fox News. When Zimmerman killed Trayvon Martin, according to Fox News it was because he was a dangerous thug. Geraldo Rivera said that “the hoodie was as much responsible for the death of Trayvon Martin as George Zimmerman was.” But now that Zimmerman has been arrested for domestic violence against a white women he says Zimmerman “is a borderline psychotic”. Rivera goes on to list Zimmerman’s brushes with the law, conveniently leaving the killing of Martin off the list. So killing a young black male is understandable because Martin was dressed like a dangerous thug, but the assault on a white woman turns Zimmerman into a dangerous criminal.
No one is running to Zimmerman’s defense, there have been no monetary funds set up for his lawyer fees. During his arraignment his high priced attorneys were absent, his family was absent, there were supporters this time. Apparently, assaulting a white woman is taking things too far.
(Article by Kori Whittaker)