HomeOpinionCommentaryTrayvon Martin-George Zimmerman A Cultural Tragedy!

Trayvon Martin-George Zimmerman A Cultural Tragedy!

When each of them started what was to be the last day of Martin's life, there was no indication that the day would be different from all of the previous ones. They were both living in a small town, and not many exciting things happen there. Each of them would likely do essentially the same things that they had done the day before. They had absolutely no idea what was in store for them.

The social customs of the area would make it unlikely that they knew each other, or that they would be friends, even if they did. So, each traveled in his own circle and they lived their lives as best as they could. Martin was a teenager and he lived with his mother. Zimmerman was an adult and he lived at home with his parents. His father was reported to be a Magistrate, which according to Webster, is "an official entrusted with administration of the laws."

Although Zimmerman came from a successful family with social and economic advantages, he was still looking for ways to become successful. He apparently sought the same kind of prestige that his father had. He had the desire to become respected, and possibly even admired.

One possible step in that direction was to become a Volunteer Member of the Neighborhood Watch. It has been reported that there were some burglaries in his neighborhood, although it is difficult to imagine that they would be a real crime spree in such a small city. However, that is what he did.

It is easy to imagine a scenario whereby he received his credentials, and then armed himself with a concealed weapon. Before he would go on duty, he could carefully check his pistol and ammunition, his flashlight, cell phone, and possibly his handcuffs. He was also likely to be very careful of his appearance, since he was seeking to earn the admiration of his neighbors.

At the same time, a part of him had to recognize that not much was likely to happen on his tour of duty. After all, he was living in Mayberry, USA, and the image of Barney Fife comes to mind.

However, there he was patrolling his beat, and carefully watching the neighborhood for any possible threats. Hoping against hope, that there would be at least one, or possibly several real incidents for him to resolve.

Then, along came someone that he did not know. His suspicions probably rose to a fever pitch. He called 911, and reported his suspicions. In what must have been a disappointment to him, he was advised to not approach the other person. However, he simply could not resist the temptation to try to become a hero.

So, in my mind, the most likely scenario is that he attempted to stop Martin from walking on his street. He would have the confidence to do this because he was armed with a concealed pistol, and he had already received Mixed Martial Arts training.

He confronted Martin, and the result was a scuffle between the two of them. He was older, larger, and outweighed Martin by about 50 pounds. So, he felt good about this opportunity. Martin probably did not know, or suspect, that Zimmerman was armed. He responded to the challenge, and was apparently getting the best of Zimmerman. The desperate Zimmerman managed to get his pistol and fire at Martin.

It was disappointing, but not surprising that the Jury came back with a not guilty verdict. Zimmerman is the only person who actually knows what happened. As a result of this verdict, there have been hundreds of protests all over the world.

The sad reality is that these protests were not caused because Martin was killed, but because he was not killed by another African American. I do not know how many African Americans have killed each other, since this incident occurred. However, I expect that the number is greater than one hundred. There are so many such killings that they are no longer news. So, it will benefit all of us if the energy and leadership that have come together for this cause, is also used to work on solutions for much larger and more serious problems.

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