Written by Julian Kimble (@JRK316).
Once again, this is Trayvon Martin.
As you may have recently heard, he was suspended from school for tardiness and truancy, possessing an empty bag of weed, graffiti, and having a "burglary tool" on him when school police saw him write "W.T.F" on a locker door with a marker. Jewelry was found in his backpack, which he says belonged to a friend, and there's no proof that it was stolen. For these reasons, the murder of Trayvon Martin becomes more complicated, right?
Wrong. George Zimmerman wasn't aware of any of these facts the night that he killed Martin, and even if he was, so what? This information has nothing to do with the only fact that matters—an unarmed teenager has been dead for over a month, and the man who shot and killed him has yet to be charged.
In the past week, Zimmerman's side of the story has emerged, thanks to some suspiciously well-timed leaks from the Sanford, Fla. police department. According to the leaked account Zimmerman allegedly gave police after the killing, he shot Martin in self-defense because the teen attacked him. If Zimmerman sustained injuries, wouldn't the police photograph them? Where are these photos? And if they exist, why weren't they leaked? The account of what happened on the evening of February 26, coupled with irrelevant info about Martin that plays on racist stereotyping, are attempts to paint Zimmerman as the victim. However, this story contradicts that of Martin's girlfriend, who was on the phone with him shortly before the shooting.
News broke yesterday that Sanford Police initially wanted to charge Zimmerman with manslaughter. Lead homicide detective Chris Serino, who was part of the initial investigation, allegedly called for Zimmerman to be arrested and charged from the jump because he didn't buy his story. However, multiple sources have told ABC News that the State's Attorney's Office declined to make an arrest due to a lack of evidence. This new revelation is far more damaging than anything people can drudge up about Martin via social media.
Instead of trying to blame Martin—or his hoodie—for his own murder, why aren't people asking why he sat in a morgue for three days as a John Doe before his parents were notified?
The New Black Panther Party has placed a $10,000 price tag on a citizen's arrest of Zimmerman. Justice is necessary here, though not vigilante justice, which is precisely what Zimmerman, with his refusal to listen to the police dispatcher on the night of Martin's murder, is guilty of. He should be charged and stand trial.
Thanks to certain media outlets, Trayvon Martin is being profiled in death the same way he was profiled by Zimmerman the night he was killed.
We're blaming the victim. And he's no longer here to defend himself.