On the Murder Of a Black Youth

July 17, 2013 3:31 PM56 comments

nfbentonpicThe murder of young Trayvon Martin was as clear and unambiguous a case of deadly racial profiling as there could be.

All of the obfuscating blither-blather notwithstanding, all the endless nitpicking over the evidence and the way the jury that found his murderer innocent last weekend, does not disguise this fact. Indeed, the interview with one anonymous juror on CNN Tuesday showed the extent to which that jury, all female with not one black person, was dripping with assumptions rooted in a structurally racist view of the world.

There is a paradigm narrative at work, with the help of the pliant major media in this land, that racism is no longer a serious problem in America, part of the advancement of passivity and indifference in the population.

Yet all the twisted exercises and logic to hold that notion together in the Trayvon Martin case has only betrayed its glaring fallacy.

The juror’s interview was a startling apologetic for the defense of George Zimmerman. She called the defendant by his first name, and declared without a doubt that a scream on a 911 recording was Zimmerman’s, even when no expert could come to such a definitive conclusion.

The jury’s embedded presumptions – it was not a jury of Trayvon Martin’s peers – were reinforced by courtroom rules prohibiting race from being introduced as a factor in the case, thus removing the very basis for the crime.

Still, there was no disputing what happened. A frustrated quasi-vigilante with a loaded gun sees a young black man walking through his neighborhood. He tells a 911 operator, “He looks like he’s up to no good,” and draws an assumption, saying, “He looks like he’s on drugs or something,” and adds, “He looks black … these assholes always get away … fucking (garbled).”

The 911 operator asks, “Are you following him?” Zimmerman says, “Yeah.” The operator says, “OK, we don’t need you doing that.”

Zimmerman disobeys the operator, taking his loaded weapon with him out of his vehicle to begin stalking his prey.

Zimmerman did not identify himself or his purpose. He assumed he had the right to stalk his victim. When the victim challenged Zimmerman, the aggressor, an altercation erupted and Zimmerman shot the boy dead.

If anything, the claim to “self defense” belonged with Martin, not Zimmerman. Because Martin did not meekly submit to Zimmerman’s bizarre intimidation, somehow Zimmerman was bestowed the right to claim “self defense.”

“It is terribly frightening that an unarmed teenager walking home from a routine errand, in his own neighborhood, could be confronted and ultimately killed,” read a statement from the United Church of Christ, a progressive national Protestant denomination.

Tavis Smiley, the PBS commentator, said forcefully on ABC Sunday morning, that the jury verdict was “just another piece of evidence of the incontrovertible contempt that this nation often shows and displays for black men.”

He added, “In just a matter of weeks we will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and that wonderful brilliant speech by Dr. King, ‘I Have a Dream’… (Dr. King said) ‘I want my children to one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.’ George Zimmerman knew nothing of Trayvon Martin’s character. All he saw was his color. … Trayvon Martin was a child, racially profiled and gunned down.”

Columnist Eugene Robinson wrote in The Washington Post Tuesday, “Justice failed Trayvon Martin the night he was killed. We should be appalled and outraged but perhaps not surprised that it failed him again Saturday night with a verdict setting his killer free.”

During the trial, there was a deep cultural divide between the court and the world of Trayvon Martin, as evidenced by the court’s inability to appreciate (or even understand, according to the jurist on CNN) the testimony of Martin’s friend, Rachel Jeantel. Being on the phone with Martin when Zimmerman’s stalking ensued, she was the closest thing to an eyewitness of the crime.

That divide, which Americans normally don’t see, is more an economic than a cultural divide, and it is the most endemic problem in America today.

  • FallsChurchCitizen

    This was a horrible tragedy all the way around. If only the evidence of the case corroborated Mr. Benton’s fantasy rendition. None other than Jimmy Carter has opined that the jury reached the correct verdict, and it’s been amazing to see the left’s vitriol cast upon the acquitted Hispanic-American. You need only watch MSNBC to know that Benton’s claim that the media wasn’t egging this on the whole time is ridiculous. About 80 African-American youths have been gunned down in Chicago in the past year or so. Does anyone know their names?

    • oregonbird

      An old white southern dude thinks the verdict was correct. Wow, I’m convinced now.

      • FallsChurchCitizen
        • oregonbird

          I’ve never understood why conservatives think herd mentality is proof of accuracy. You’ve had intelligent people telling you since before the days of Rome that a mob has no mind.

          • FallsChurchCitizen

            Let me get this straight. You criticized my mention of President Carter’s logical support of the jury’s decision because one “old white southern dude” is hardly convincing. Okay, so I respond with a poll showing that many more people agreed with the verdict than disagreed with it, and you turn around and argue with your earlier point by stating that a “herd mentality” doesn’t mean anything, either! Which is it? You can’t have it both ways.

          • Michael Gerardi

            Libturds hate polls except when the polls support their agenda. Libturds hate “old white southern dudes” except when they support their agenda. Libturds hate “racism” except when they target “old white southern dudes”. What a bunch of frauds and hypocrites.

          • dubb

            The vast majority agreed with slavery but that doesn’t make it right. Carter probably was looking at how the trail proceedings went and the laws according the the Florida legal system. Also, the defense did a better job than the DA. We all know that what really matters is who is more believable to the jury. Look at how many folks spent 15 plus years in prison, only to be found innocent years later. The verdict and the polls that agree with the verdict doesn’t mean it was correct. It just means that the defense did it’s job and the people that were polled views are more geared towards Zimmerman’s.

        • Marquis Matthews

          Multiply that by the people who did not poll.

        • Lowe

          and 77.9% of the population identify as being white .. meaning they are part of the dominant culture and have the privilege of not experiencing the inequalities the rest of face through institutional racism. One person was the aggressor, one person was armed, and one person provoked a confrontation and killed the other. One was also a grown ass man and the other a child. but you and many like you are conditioned to fear people of color. That was the only thing threatening about martin. Also there was no proof of an actual struggle happening. Autopsy report showed no signs of a struggle, no marks, no bruises, no scratches, no dna. Nothing to corroborate zimmermans story. Martin was on trial here .. and all the defense had to do was play into the fear that already existed.

          • JFallsChurch

            no proof of a struggle? not sure about that. Nothing to corroborate Zimmerman’s story. That is not what I have seen but I was not on the jury/in the courtroom.

          • JFallsChurch

            Institutional racism…has created a culture were atleast 70% of the babies are born out of wedlock?

    • Marquis Matthews

      Why is Chicago an excuse?And why do you give a sh##t about it?DO YOU KNOW THEIR NAMES?!

      • FallsChurchCitizen

        Chicago matters because the death of any teenager is a tragedy, but apparently there has to be a racial angle for any of them to garner publicity. Of course I don’t know their names, because the Al Sharptons of the world dominating cable can’t be bothered to talk about those murders.

  • Alex

    While it was a horrible incident I suppose the fact that a probe by the FBI that revealed no evidence of race being a factor is something we should just throw out the window. Or maybe we should disregard the fact there is little to no evidence to back up that Zimmerman in racist the the DOJ, after their own FBI conducted a probe, have set up a tip line and email address for people to send in anything they might think indicate Zimmerman is a racist. You might even think that the jury doesn’t understand a black teen or the black culture, but that had nothing to do with their decision, and it shouldn’t. They weren’t there to decide if Martin had a right to to confront Zimmerman and get in a fight with him because that’s how he was raised or because as a black teen this is how they roll. They were there to decide if Zimmerman was guilty of a crime, and that rested primarily on whether they felt Zimmerman reasonably feared for his life and in turn used deadly force to defend himself. Now I’ll admit considering the whole incident and my understanding of the definition of manslaughter I think Zimmerman very likely might be guilty of that. But by no means do I think race played a part. I suppose if the jury was all black and understood the black perogative they’d have convicted him because the only reason this happened was because Martin was black in a white world, disregarding that ZImmerman is half hispanic in a white world. Fortunately that is exactly how our judicial does not work, justice is supposed to be blind, and it’s far more important that the guilty man on occasion be wrongfully set free than the innocent man wrongfully convicted.

    • oregonbird

      What we’re all trying to figure out is how y’all can skip right over the fact that a teenager being stalked by a large man in the dark must reasonably be assumed to be in fear of his life… and therefore had the right to defend himself.

      • JFallsChurch

        “being stalked by a large man in the dark and to be in fear of his life”….how do you know that?

        • Marquis Matthews

          Really?Im glad social media has shown me what white people dont say in public.

          • JFallsChurch

            Your comment makes no sense.

        • dubb

          How do you know that is not the case? He was the one coming from the store with his bag of skittles and ice tea.

      • Alex

        Aside from the fact that Martin was larger than Zimmerman, I can understand apprehension, concern, even a level of fear having someone follow you, but unless they did something other than that I can’t understand fearing for your life. If he was so concerned why didn’t he call 911 and tell them he was being stalked? Cause he didn’t trust the police? Maybe I can understand that, but if I feared for my life I’d trust them enough to that I’d want them involved.

        • JFallsChurch

          so you attack the guy?

          • Alex

            Of course not, maybe you ask him what he’s doing, but that’s it unless he gets aggressive

        • oregonbird

          Yep. Zimmerman being 40 pounds heavier makes Trayvon larger. That’s conservative math, and I think it’s just excellent math. Say, I wonder if it would have mattered if Zimmerman didn’t “trust” the police enough? Of course not. Because Mr. Z trusted them enough to call them… and then ignore what they said. I’m sure that if Trayvon had called, and ignored the dispatcher, that wouldn’t have been a problem either.

          • Alex

            40 pounds heavier kind of a stocky build as he was anywhere from 3-7 inched shorter than Martin, I guess it’s six of one half a dozen of the other Martin was taller, possibly significantly taller with a much leaner build, While Zimmerman was shorted and about 40 pounds heavier. Perhaps I am wrong, but I’m pretty sure I would be afraid of somebody with that kind of build, particularly if i was taller. I can only imagine the people I must scare from my size 6’2″ and about 500 pounds, sadly it’s not muscle.

            If I am scared for my life I don’t call my Girlfriend, I call the PD and tell them somebody is suspiciously following me. And Yes I think it would have made a significant difference if Zimmerman didn’t trust the PD, if he did not they would not there would have been a lot more of pure he said, she said. But the fact that he called establishes why ZImmerman was trying to follow Martin and that he did trust the police to handle it. As he thought Martin was acting odd, he was afraid that Martin might be gone before the PD arrived. Of course I’m sure there are those that think Zimmerman’s call to the PD was all about letting him get away with murder. They probably believe he saw a black boy and thought to himself “yeeha, I’m gonna kill me a ******” The he decided to call the PD to make it look like it had nothing to do with what he thought was suspicious behavior.

          • dubb

            You can’t be too afraid if you are following them (after you were told not to) and you have a gun. I don’t know too many people who are scared of an unarmed person when they are armed. I think if Zimmerman wasn’t armed then he might have been afraid but that’s what the gun is for. It’s makes cowards feel brave.

          • Alex

            How did he know if martin had a firearm or not? I’m not saying Zimmerman was afraid, at least not until Martin was on top of him, but seems a little foolish to assume he could know if someone was carrying or not.

          • dubb

            What you are saying doesn’t make any sense? If I have a bag of skittles and ice tea in my hand what was the purpose of Zimmerman following him. What made Zimmerman want to follow this person unless it was pertaining to his race. Zimmerman didn’t see him robbing,raping or breaking into someone’s house, so what would make him follow or feel threaten by this individual. We are innocent until proven guilty in this country unless you are black, it that what you are trying to tell me. There was no reason other than that for Zimmerman to be following Trayvon. If he doesn’t follow Trayvon, none of this happens. Let the police do their job that’s why citizens who are not trained get themselves or others hurt. Police who are trained still make mistakes so what do you expect of a citizen.

          • Alex

            I’m not saying Zimmerman followed Martin because he thought Martin had a firearm, but I am saying he was following him because his behavior seemed odd. If your behavior seems odd doesn’t matter what you have in your hands. He followed him because he was concerned that a stranger who was acting oddly was in his neighborhood, a neighborhood that had been having break-ins. And Zimmerman did call the cops to have them do their job. He should have heeded the dispatchers advice to not follow Martin (and that I agree was part of what lead to Martin’s death), but he did follow martin he wanted to be able to relay to the PD where Martin was when they arrived, and I would also imagine keep an eye on him to make sure he didn’t try to do something like break into a house or something else. Had Martin been any other color I am convinced Zimmerman would have still acted the same way.

        • dubb

          I don’t know too many black youths that would call the police in any situation not even if they were robbed. Once you become a teen in our culture officer friendly is not so friendly. Please talk about stuff you have a clue about. If you haven’t been pulled over by police for driving while black or followed in the mail by police because you don’t look like them you really can’t comment on why Trayvon didn’t call the police. He shouldn’t have been followed in the first place and he didn’t do anything to be followed except be the wrong skin color. Maybe it’s not meant for you to understand especially if you are not open to trying to understand thinks outside you scope of comprehension.

          • Alex

            Pardon me but I worked in a city for many years and let me tell you the cops in the city were more likely to pull over white people because they were in areas where there were few of them, Out of place can be out of place regardless of skin color.

            As far as being followed or the police being called he did not do anything illegal, but he was engaging in suspicious behavior, what do I mean by that? Walking around between houses, in the rain, sort of meandering around. Not too many people seem to aimlessly wander around in the rain, and since there had been break-ins in the neighborhood someone that you don;t recognize walking in and around the residences would be suspicious.

            You don’t know me by the way, why do you say that I can’t understand because it’s out of my scope of comprehension? How do you know I’m not black? I’m not but you are making assumptions about me and at the same time insulting me. I understand that many black youths have not trust or love for the police, I also know that’s probably why Martin didn’t call them.

            How is it though that I know several black people that I’ve worked with in the past that don’t have the “black” experience you are talking about? I think, whether you want to believe it or not, that there are often other reasons someone is being followed than their skin color. Mind you I am not foolish enough to say that skin color never plays a role, and sometimes their is a deep seated profiling based on color, but more often I think that when skin color is a factor it isn’t about racism, it’s about being out of place.

            Quite frankly, and this doesn’t just apply to black kids, it applies across many skin tones, but if youth today didn’t act like hooligans or look like them half the time I think they’d be left alone more often by the police and not harassed.

            I’m sure you’ll disagree with me on the arguments I’ve made and opinions I’ve stated. But I think we are in a more post racial society than people want to give society credit for. Perhaps it’s the foolish optimist in me, but I don’t see color as being a factor in my impressions of people, and I like to think most others don’t either.

          • dubb

            You working in the city and seeing cops pulling over white folks because they were probably going into a well known drug area but to just be riding along and get pulled over because you have a nice car but the wrong skin color for that car is a different case. I could tell you were not black by some of your comments. I didn’t assume anything. We are a lot further along as far as race relations are concerned but we still have a long way to go.

            Blacks are as diverse as any other race so I know there are quite a few blacks that might not have had some of the experiences I have had but that was not the point I was trying to make. Basically you can’t judge a person until you know what challenges they face on an every day basis. What is good about Trayvon Martin trial is that it starts a conversation like we are having now where you can actually get some insight on conditions others face and why they view the world today the way they do, instead of assuming that everything that happens to a black person they think is racist which is not the case.

            We don’t know that he was just walking around looking crazy … I’m paraphrasing. For all we know he might have seen Zimmerman following him and tried to cut between houses to loose him. Regardless of why Zimmerman followed him, he shouldn’t have been following him. He was told not to follow him which we all know to be a fact. You don’t have to be a racist to profile someone so let’s stop saying he’s not a racist. It doesn’t matter, he profiled him, followed him and then shot and killed him. He should have gotten at least manslaughter. He got nothing. If I am a black parent I don’t feel safe letting my child leave to house to get something from the corner store. What I am to do if the legal system doesn’t protect me and my child or consider our lives of any value. Please tell how would you feel if that was your child.

    • dubb

      We all know that you don’t have to be a racist to racially profile someone. You racially profile someone when you assume all chinese folks or white folks are smart. Does that make you a racist, no it doesn’t but you have just racially profiled someone whether it is positive or negative. Let’s keep it real on here.

      • Alex

        Actually that’s called stereotyping. And maybe it’s just me, but I try not to make such assumptions. I might make a joke about such sterotypes buy I’ve learned that they certainly aren’t a truth about an individual.

        • dubb

          Really … what’s the difference? Any preceived notion is either sterotyping or racial profiling. It can be something as simple as a person being tall and you assuming that person can play basketball. We all make assumptions whether good or bad. That’s human nature. Let’s keep it real. To me sterotyping it broader than racial profiling. For example all blondes are dumb is sterotyping. Where as blacks are better athletes is both but racial profiling is mainly used when it comes to law enforcement but basically they’re both the same thing.

  • JFallsChurch

    “stalking his prey”? Really……
    not a Jury of Trayvon’s peers?
    bizarre intimidation….
    Mr. Benton, were you in the courtroom and listen to every detail, every fact of evidence in this trial? If not, please stop writing about this trial.

    • Marquis Matthews

      I watched every second.DVR baby!You have selective views.I knew Zim was going to walk just because of the FL laws but to say he did not profile T.M. is just being a dikkhole.I hope you feel this same way when the roles are reversed.Everything that goes around comes around.

      • JFallsChurch

        To say that police/law enforcement/community watch do not profile is skeptical at best.

        Roles reversed? What does that mean. Okay, If I am approached by a police officer/community watch person and he asks me what I am doing. I answer “Just walking home sir(mam), have a nice night?”.

        You are the one with selective view.

    • Michael Gerardi

      Benton is even more ignorant and dishonest than the typical liberal in wailing about how the jury wasn’t a jury “of Trayvon Martin’s peers”. Juries are intended to be the peers OF THE DEFENDANT!!! Of COURSE they weren’t Martin’s “peers”. When a defendant is tried by the (alleged) “victim’s” peers, that’s called MOB JUSTICE. I am absolutely certain that the next case in which a young black male is on trial for killing a white victim will see Benton DEMANDING a jury of the victim’s peers. Er, wait . . . never mind.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1301564078 Tom Kidd

    What I cannot put behind me is the constant trashing, even now, of Trayvon Martin. To hear many of these posters on these websites just gleefully raking this dead lad into the mud; they blame him for practically everything from Pearl Harbor to 9/11. Sickening. George Zimmerman is the one alive. God sees you people; you won’t escape Him later. Word.

    • Antwoine Pennix

      You see this Tom because it shows just how much a black child’s life is worth and respected in the hearts and minds of the people trashing him and supporting his killer. America has its way of rearing its ugly, racist head when things like this present themselves. It is nothing new……. things have always been this way.

      • JFallsChurch

        who is racist?

  • FCC

    George Zimmerman was attacked by someone with a history of violence. George Zimmerman defended himself. Case closed. Justice is blind.

    • oregonbird

      Zimmerman has, in the past, attacked a police officer and his girlfriend, and was dealt with through the court in both cases. Feel free to post the court cases in which Trayvon was charged with crimes of violence.

      • JFallsChurch

        Did not make it to court does not equal not violent. He sure did act violent on the night he was shot.

    • Marquis Matthews

      Zimm attacked the cops.

      • JFallsChurch

        TM attacked Zimm

  • JM

    The media was biased against Trayvon Martin!? Do you now work for “The Ministry of Truth” because that is some fine re-writing of history to fit your ideological ends there. And you continue one of the most glaring cases where the media showed their bias – the editing of the 911 call. You wrote;
    [“He looks like he’s on drugs or something,” and adds, “He looks black … these assholes always get away … fucking (garbled).”]
    The 911 transcript is:
    [
    Zimmerman: Hey we've had some break-ins in my neighborhood, and there's a
    real suspicious guy, uh, [near] Retreat View Circle, um, the best address I can
    give you is 111 Retreat View Circle. This guy looks like he’s up to no good, or
    he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around, looking
    about.
    Dispatcher: OK, and this guy is he white, black, or Hispanic?
    Zimmerman: He looks black.
    Dispatcher: Did you see what he was wearing?
    Zimmerman: Yeah. A dark hoodie, like a grey hoodie, and either jeans or
    sweatpants and white tennis shoes. He’s [unintelligible], he was just staring…
    ]

    The transcript goes on for quite a bit before and after the other two statements you included in your quote. The only reason Zimmerman mentions Trayvon is black is because the dispatcher specifically asks him if he was black (or white or hispanic). But that inconvieniently goes against the narrative you want to help continue.

    Shame on you. I know this is commentary and not a news story and so more leeway is given, but please, this can only be extreme ignorance or extreme manipulation and deceit on your part. The worst part is, you are contributing to a false story that will do more damage to race relations in america than the damage that would have been done if in fact Zimmerman was actually motivated by race. It is you, Mr. Benton, that is judging based on the color of skin (i.e. Zimmerman’s skin was a different color than Trayvon’s so that HAS to be the motivation) instead of the content of their character (or the complete facts of the case).

    And for the record, I do have issues with the vigilante aspects of this case, and that is a topic that is worth public discourse, too bad you and the national media wanted a race based story and had to make one up when it wasn’t there to begin with and so using this case as a means to discuss vigilante “justice” is no longer possible.
    I just hope that your actions and the actions of the national media to twist this story doesn’t make this tragedy worse by motivating some unbalanced person to the point of harming Zimmerman or members of his family or the defense team.

  • dave4848

    If it was so clear to you… Why didn’t you tell the prosecutor? Holder is looking for your evidence right now! Pick up the phone and call the DOJ. Your new evidence could swing this case to progressive bliss. Stop being a racist and call now.

  • Crowds Gather

    It was clearly a case of self-defense. Too bad you’re so close-minded. You probably had your mind made up the first time you heard about the shooting and nothing would make a difference to you.

  • Michael Gerardi

    Gee, another disgruntled libturd whining about a jury that didn’t drink the anti-white racist Kool-Aid. A TEEN-AGE WANNA-BE GANGSTA (not a “child”), who was on the way back from the 7-11 with ingredients to get high on “lean”, and who had dope in his system, thought he would have an easy time beating a smaller “white” man (who is NOT “white” but multiracial, including BLACK ancestry) into a bloody pulp. He found out, to his cost, that sometimes gangstas get what they ask for.

    Zimmerman had every right to be on the look-out for young black males in ghetto attire, since his neighborhood had already been burglarized by a number of previous young black males in ghetto attire. That isn’t “profiling”, that’s reasonable suspicion based on evidence.

    Zimmerman acted in self-defense. THE jury (not “a” jury) found him NOT GUILTY. Get used to it, libturds and anti-white racists. Pretend you’re like the non-black community after the OJ Simpson verdict and DON’T riot! In the meantime, we’re enjoying watching you get angry, write stupid columns, and generally act like idiots.

  • stellamojo

    90 percent of all serial killers, pedophiles and serial rapists are white middle-aged men and are usually church-goers. I cross the street when I see one walking toward me on the street in favor of ANY black person on the other side of the street. Are you kidding? Zimmerman profiled Trayvon followed him in vehicle and on foot, created the circumstances that caused the 17 year old’s murder. The man was fully guilty of “manslaughter.”

    • JFallsChurch

      creating the circumstance by following him….that’s a tough buy.

    • JFallsChurch

      ..

  • Sean Steel

    Hands down the most ridiculous article I have read on the subject.

    • jimbledsoe

      Now that is something I agree with Sean. Mr. Benton has no
      business writing this commentary, but he can’t help himself. No one that has
      commented was there when this happened. I don’t know the law in Florida. From what I saw, I do not think you can judge a ‘life or death’ struggle unless you have been in one. If Mr. Benton has a life experience that relates to his
      commentary, he should have led with it. I wasn’t there, or was I a juror who heard all the evidence. The loss of Trayvon Martins life is a tragedy that could have been avoided. I think Mr. Zimmerman went looking for trouble and he forced a confrontation. That said, peoples life experiences are different. Maybe what Mr. Zimmerman thought was a life or death struggle really was not. What pisses me off is an ultra liberal wind bag that never shuts up. This crap detracts
      from the fact that a young man lost his life whether you think it was self
      defense or not. Thanks Nick

  • David

    “Murder?” Hopefully Zimmerman sues you for defamation.

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