Who Has the Right to Self-Defense and Life in So-Called “Post-Racial” Society?

8 thoughts on “Who Has the Right to Self-Defense and Life in So-Called “Post-Racial” Society?”

  1. For me, looking from a psychological vantage-point, GZimmerman’s “softness” led him to act out his amplified fears in an attempt to conquer them. Up until that fateful encounter with a teen who was trying to get home before anything bad happened to him, GZimmerman’s performance of manhood was untested. He was seeking self-assurance of his testosterone-based adequacy. That’s why he felt so relaxed and confident after shooting and killing the boy. In his mind, he just “passed the test.” People who carry a gun with common sense and training know not to nullify the advantage the gun gives them by getting so close they get into a long physical altercation and get their ass kicked because they’ve been watching too many “tough guy” movies. His inability to recognize/admit how “soft” he was [“.5 on a scale of 1-10″], his wish to prove he was a man, and his lack of knowledge and experience of physical engagement (getting into a fight) were a bad mix. Same for a lot of people who blow someone away with a gun, regardless of race, color, creed, and political affiliation: Didn’t go to the army, didn’t learn to respect firearms, didn’t learn the scope of effective defensible postures, didn’t know what it feels like to wrestle someone who made the football team, didn’t know how punch something besides shadows: He was out of his league on every count. His decision to kill someone was made the moment he got his hands on a gun. He wasn’t going to “win” any contest without it that night. He just could not admit it to himself. The decision of the jury to provide him absolution from stupidity makes sense only in their own experience of America’s traditional overwhelming fear of the Black male. I wonder how young TMartin would have to have been before a jury refused to buy the argument that it was reasonable for GZimmerman to have that much fear…?

  2. For me, looking from a psychological vantage-point, GZimmerman’s “softness” led him to act out his amplified fears in an attempt to conquer them. Up until that fateful encounter with a teen who was trying to get home before anything bad happened to him, GZimmerman’s performance of manhood was untested. He was seeking self-assurance of his testosterone-based adequacy. That’s why he felt so relaxed and confident after shooting and killing the boy. In his mind, he just “passed the test.” People who carry a gun with common sense and training know not to nullify the advantage the gun gives them by getting so close they get into a long physical altercation and get their ass kicked because they’ve been watching too many “tough guy” movies. His inability to recognize/admit how “soft” he was [“.5 on a scale of 1-10″], his wish to prove he was a man, and his lack of knowledge and experience of physical engagement (getting into a fight) were a bad mix. Same for a lot of people who blow someone away with a gun, regardless of race, color, creed, and political affiliation: Didn’t go to the army, didn’t learn to respect firearms, didn’t learn the scope of effective defensible postures, didn’t know what it feels like to wrestle someone who made the football team, didn’t know how punch something besides shadows: He was out of his league on every count. His decision to kill someone was made the moment he got his hands on a gun. He wasn’t going to “win” any contest without it that night. He just could not admit it to himself. The decision of the jury to provide him absolution from stupidity makes sense only in their own experience of America’s traditional overwhelming fear of the Black male. I wonder how young TMartin would have to have been before a jury refused to buy the argument that it was reasonable for GZimmerman to have that much fear…?

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  3. I’ll be the first to agree that we’re not post-racial. Not by a long shot. Though I’d like to think we’ve made advances, Black Americans still get mistreated by the justice system all the time. (http://www.sentencingproject.org/doc/publications/rd_sentencing_review.pdf) This is a problem that needs fixing.

    Yet, I’m often left wondering why people exemplify such injustice with Zimmerman’s trial? For example, this article assumes that Zimmerman racially profiled Martin, but fails to cite any evidence demonstrating such. Racial profiling is one Heck of an accusation, one that directly weighs on the accused’s charges, so it requires… you know… evidence. Which I’ve seen nobody provide.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m aware that judicial racism is less overt than it was during Jim Crow. Yet, we cannot realistically assume that every interracial confrontation happens because of racism.

    So I ask: on what premise do we assume Zimmerman racially profiled Martin?

    — Ashkuff

    1. My question to AshKuff is what do you think racial profiling is? Please explain how you define racial profiling. I am thinking that you are not familiar with the term.

      1. Darn good question!

        Racial profiling, as I’ve been taught, is “using race as grounds for suspicion.”

        If Zimmerman had provably racially profiled Martin, that may’ve constituted the “spite” necessary to make 2nd degree murder charges stick. (http://touch.latimes.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-76667456/) Which, like I said, is a big accusation.

        So I’m still left asking: on what premise did Zimmerman racially profile Martin?

        — Ashkuff

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