by Playthell Benjamin
There is a lesson arising from the George Zimmerman trial that must not be lost on Afro-Americans. It is better to kill a white attacker than attempt to reason with them – especially in states with “stand your ground laws” like Florida. If they step to you with any sign of aggression shoot first and ask questions later. And if there are no witnesses just go on about your business.
For the two most valuable lessons we learned from the Zimmerman case is that white boys will shoot and kill you if you kick their asses in a fair fight, and not only will the judicial system exonerate them, they will scandalize your name and give the “creepy ass cracker” his gun back. So you might as well take his ass out and take your chances. The one thing we know for sure is that had Trayvon Martin Killed Zimmerman it is his narrative that would have dominated the discourse and not Zimmerman’s transparent lies during trial.
The eyes of a Crazed Child Killer. Trayvon should have killed him
It is a cruel irony that the killer should be the author of the story relating the circumstances of the killing. It is in the nature of things that the story will be self-serving, given the severity of the penalty for murder. The extent to which Zimmerman’s version of events, recast in the hands of smart amoral lawyers who were totally ruthless in their courtroom tactics, influenced the way jurors saw the case was made clear in the testimony of one of the jurors.
Appearing behind a veil of darkness to conceal her identity the juror, known only as B37, provided us a peek into the mental process by which they arrived at the verdict that Zimmerman was not guilty on all counts. The most revealing aspect of her testimony was the extent to which she bought Zimmerman’s version of events. She kept referring to him affectionately as “George.” She said his “heart was in the right place” but things got out of hand. She held Trayvon equally responsible for his death, and said the issue of race never came up in their deliberations. And to add grievous insult to fatal injury she said she felt equally sorry for both Trayvon and “George.”
It was a shocking revelation to most, but it confirmed my theory of how the case was decided. I have argued all along that the most important factor influencing the way this case was adjudicated is the race question. It was clearly apparent to me, as it was to everyone that is not totally clueless, that if the racial identity of killer and victim was switched – Zimmerman an angry black man and Trayvan a middle class white teenager going about his business in a gated community- the response of the police, the judge and the Jury would have been radically different.
To argue otherwise is a fool’s errand or an exercise for charlatans. Who is naïve enough to believe that a black man could have stalked and killed a white teenager and be allowed to walk away from the scene instead of being arrested? Who can believe they would have allowed him to go on about his business after the murder of the white teen without being arrested for over a month?
Is there anybody in America who believes that it would have required a mass movement just to secure an arrest? And nobody believes that the black child killer would have been found not guilty on all counts! Although white apologist try to confuse the conversation by arguing that the judge’s instruction – which was almost 30 pages – to the jury were too complex and therefore confusing, the fact remains they would have had no problem convicting the killer of Second Degree Murder if the Trayvon was white and Zimmerman Black!
Alas, if a white jury in Florida could find a white sleaze ball with a record of odious offenses like Zimmerman – who molested a child, battered his wife and assaulted a cop before murdering Trayvon – not guilty on all counts based on his word that he did nothing wrong, the chances that they would have found a black perp was justified in shooting down an unarmed and unoffending white kid is about equal to a snowflakes chances in a pizza oven!
One does not have to be clairvoyant in order to predict that in a violent encounter between a white and black American Mighty Whitey will get the nod in court. Both history and present circumstance tells us so. Hence the conclusion reached by Robert Williams in Monroe North Carolina in 1960, over a half century ago, is true in Florida today: “We must judge and convict our white attackers on the spot!
For Afro-Americans living in the big cities of the north, Midwest and the pacific coast, it is hard to get firearms legally. But in the south it is relatively easy to get a gun, and every law abiding black person should own a few: a shotgun, a rifle and a side arm. Let me make it clear that I am not a gun freak, and I do not share the National Rifle Association’sfetish for guns or their ambition to put a gun in the hand of every American.
In fact I have written a persuasive historically based essay arguing for repeal of the Second Amendment, the constitutional basis upon which laws conferring the right to own guns is based. Alas, it did not convince the princes and powers who rule the nation to correct the error of their ways. So I have arrived at this decision that black Americans must take up guns and shoot white aggressors by the logic of events.
As Abraham Lincoln said when he signed the Emancipation Proclamation, although he had not been an abolitionist when he assumed the presidency but had been converted by the blood and fire of southern succession and Civil War: “clearly I have not controlled events…but events have controlled me.” It is unreasonable, indeed an invitation to disaster, foe Afro-Americans to stand idly by while whites buy guns by the tons.
Although Trayvon Martin was too young to get a gun permit, if he had a legal gun, or managed to take Zimmerman’s gun and shot the pig through his fat head, he would be alive today, and even if convicted we could mount a movement for a presidential pardon. Black men have as much right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as white men, despite the fact that many whites still swear by Chief Justice Roger B. Taney’s opinion in the 1857 Dread Scott Decision: “Black men have no rights that white me are bound to respect.”
Alas, in Florida today it seems with some belligerent whites respect only comes from the barrel of a gun. If that’s the price of the ticket so be it. When in Rome do as the Romans, and when in “The Land of the Flowers,” my ancestral home, get you some guns!
Southern Black Folks Set the Precedent
Monroe North Carolina 1960
Benjamin is a veteran political journalist out of Harlem NY. His essays can be read on his blog site Commentaries on the Times.