Houston Forward Times

07 August 2013 Written by  Amarie Gipson

Only in America

The Issue: George Zimmerman’s acquittal in the fatal 2012 shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin has sparked widespread protests and reactions across the country. Zimmerman was found not guilty of second-degree murder for fatally shooting the teen. The case’s verdict has brought racism to the forefront of the nation’s attention. Many protestors, politicians, celebrities, and other public figures continue to voice their sympathy and overall disbelief. The case has fallen in line with several other examples of unjust acts against African American citizens, particularly males.

Question: What is your take on the Trayvon Martin case and how has the verdict affected you as an African American male in America?


 Dennis Davis Dennis Davis - “As a young black man growing up in the community I live in, it’s unfair to see a man walk away for murder. I’ve been stereotyped with similar things by other races. There’s always another side to the story. Justice should be served.”
 
 

 Marcus Walker 

 

Marcus Walker - “The case has raised an aware consciousness. It helps black men understand that there are still things we need to deal with. I have two young boys, so the verdict has definitely affected me personally. My heart dropped when the verdict came, but I cannot say that I was shocked.”


Marcus Washington  Marcus Washington - “Zimmerman made a wrong decision that unfortunately cost a young man his life. Our court systems are against black people. We as a race have to put aside our differences, come together, and fight for what is right.”

 Grant Sylvester  Grant Sylvester - “The verdict has reminded me that I should do all that I can, as a young black male, to project the most respectable and positive image possible. I know that society is waiting on my failure, but I will do all that I can to prove t hem wrong.”

What do I think?

In the midst of the case and its verdict, I could only pray for justice. The verdict has inevitably placed our nation centuries back, highlighting the issues of racial prejudice that have been swept under the rug. The justice system has oppressed black males for several decades, and it is unfortunate that this has not prompted our race to unite rather than succumb to the stereotypes. This case should have served as an extreme wakeup call from the rising African American generation. We should make it our personal goal to challenge and defeat the expectations set by the system and today’s society.