Zimmerman Verdict Shows How Still Divided America is by Race

Yahoo Contributor Network

Yahoo News asked Sanford, Fla., residents and others across the nation to react to the not-guilty verdict in the George Zimmerman case and cultural issues surrounding the trial. Here's one response.

COMMENTARY | One of things the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman case proved was how divided America is still by race. Blacks and white, in general, regard almost everything (not the least of which criminal justice) from a different perspective.

Just looking at the facts of the case, the verdict of not guilty was inescapable. The evidence, at least from the perspective of someone who has just followed the case in the news, was that George Zimmerman honestly believed that his life was in danger and, using his right of self-defense, shot Trayvon Martin to death.

On the other hand, because Zimmerman and Martin were of different ethnic backgrounds, the matter at hand was never just about the facts of the case. It was about the fact that the United States is further away than ever to that golden age when people are judged by the content of their character and not the color of their skin. And that means no matter if that character is pure or flawed and whatever the skin color, black, white, or something in between.

The sad fact is that young men like Trayvon Martin are murdered ever day. But as the Daily Caller pointed out, these other cases do not cause the kind of nationwide passions that this case caused, because they tend to be killed by other young black men. That is despite the fact that these other young black men are just as dead as Martin and just as mourned by those they leave behind.

There is another said fact that there is a racial divide in America because too many people find it convenient to maintain it. President Barack Obama, too clever by half, helped to inject race into the case when he claimed that if he had a son, he would look like Trayvon Martin.

So America will continue to be divided by race so long as it profits the unscrupulous to maintain it. Beyond the death of one young man and the branding of another for life, that is the essential tragedy of this case.

View Comments