July 18, 2013

Trayvon's Weapon of Choice

“That is a sidewalk and that is not an unarmed teenager with nothing but Skittles trying to get home,” O’Mara said, summarizing the state’s case against Zimmerman. O’Mara argued that Martin was using the cement sidewalk as a weapon against Zimmerman as they fought on a Sanford street in February 2012.

“And the suggestion by the state that that’s not a weapon, that that can’t hurt somebody … is disgusting,” O’Mara said.

via Mark O’Mara Uses Cement Prop In George Zimmerman Trial: ‘That Is Not An Unarmed Teenager With Nothing But Skittles Trying To Get Home’ (Howard Koplowitz – IBTimes.com)

Call it “assault with a deadly sidewalk.” As the Zimmerman verdict fades into the news cycle, this lesser-circulated image keeps rattling around in my brain. If it’s hard to look past the spectacle of Zimmerman’s lawyer risking a hernia, what heightens the irony is the black officer and his glance. As Florida actually managed to conduct a trial on Zimmerman’s killing of Martin without every addressing race, so many shots from the trial now serve as windows and testimony of the elephant in the room. As an officer of the court, I imagine the law man with the badge, the stripes, the keys and, yes, the service weapon is supposed to fairly poker-faced. Even if the look is instantaneous and actually pure curiosity, however, the gaze can’t help but stand for some skepticism, even antipathy.

Surely as we have the ability to walk solid ground, nature bestows the African-American with lethal means.

(photo: Joe Burbank-Pool/Getty Images. caption: Defense attorney Mark O’Mara carries a slab of concrete toward the jury during closing arguments in Zimmerman’s murder trial July 12, 2013 in Sanford, Florida. Judge Debra Nelson has ruled that the jury can also consider a lesser manslaughter charge along with the second-degree murder charge in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.)

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Michael Shaw
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