Much has been made of Trayvon Martin’s age, a relatively young 17 to his shooter’s 28. It has been used as an emotional trigger to inhibit all rational analyses of the events that occurred 16 months ago, during which a high-school student with drugs in his system blindsided a neighborhood watchman, George Zimmerman, by attacking him from behind, out of nowhere, with a jarring, wrap-around punch to the nose, and, climbing atop the toppled Zimmerman, grabbing and slamming his skull into the pavement.
Sure, the on-duty Zimmerman had been following Trayvon to see what he was up to in walking along the gated walls of the upscale community that had recently been having trouble with robberies at the hands of youths whom Trayvon resembled, but I’ll remind the liberals reading this that following someone is not a crime, even if the motives are a racial animus toward the person being followed.
I’ll also remind you, speaking of racial animus, that racism is not a crime. It’s hard to believe, given that the Left is so vigorous in hurling racism accusations, as if racism is a legal matter and not one of personal taste, but it’s true: racism is not a crime, racism is not against the law, racism is perfectly legal. Now, is racially profiling someone racist? I use the word “racist” here in the same sense the simpleminded use it, defined indiscriminately as being against all members of a particular race, specifically because of their race. The answer is No, racially profiling someone is not racist; it is taking notice of and caution against patterns observed. Would it have been racial profiling for Zimmerman to have the intellectual integrity to acknowledge in his own mind that Trayvon looked like the criminals the community was specifically warned against? According to accounts of Zimmerman as a person, he was a bit wimpy and he had a hero complex; so it stands to reason that he probably would have followed any person of any race were that person lurking in the shadows of a neighborhood with a fresh history of crime. People with hero complexes don’t discriminate against opportunities to be heroes, but regardless, Zimmerman was not looking to hire Trayvon for a job; the intent of racial profiling would have been for the defense of others, and, as with racism, this is not a crime.
So far, no crime had been committed that night.
Zimmerman, who, contrary to what the media says, was not told by police not to pursue Trayvon but was merely informed he didn’t have to (“Sir, you don’t have to do that,” said the police dispatcher), gave up after a few minutes of looking for the hooded figure he had seen. That was that; the person got away, in his mind, and the situation came to a close. Nobody was going to get arrested, nobody was going to get punched or beaten or shot. Zimmerman walked away.
At that point, Trayvon began following Zimmerman. Again, that’s not a crime. Trayvon had the right to follow the person who had been following him. Still, no crimes committed.
But then Trayvon jumped Zimmerman and assaulted him. Crime. Trayvon was the instigator in the ensuing tussle on the pavement. Whether Trayvon feared for his life does not matter because nobody did anything illegal against him and therefore he was not defending himself. He wanted who he thought was a white guy to pay the price for following him while being white, even though Zimmerman is half-Hispanic and looks fully so. Trayvon threw the first punch, committed the first crime on the scene, and he paid the price for it. Maybe he assumed that because Zimmerman wasn’t a gangsta like him, he didn’t have a gun on him. Sadly, he was wrong.
When the FBI does undercover sting operations to catch a terrorist in plotting to commit a terroristic act, a ridiculous complaint sounds from some people who say that the terrorist is an innocent victim of the police. But if it is not in a man’s heart to bomb a populated building, he would not have gone along with the feds’ sting operation in the first place. It’s similar in the Zimmerman-Trayvon episode.
It is completely irrelevant that Trayvon was 17 years old. Trayvon’s actions that night—jumping and bludgeoning a man (“ground-and-pound” style, according to an eyewitness) who was doing nothing illegal, nothing harmful, and, at the time of being attacked, was minding his own business—proved that Trayvon was a dangerous kid and not at all the innocent portrayed by the media. Even if Zimmerman provoked him, it was Trayvon who commit the crime, and eagerly.