Jul 14, 2013

more powerful to recognize that we are zimmerman?

in light of the ruling, my last post seems painfully prophetic.

my friend Jorge Salazar posted the following on facebook:

"Instead of saying "I am Trayvon Martin" it would do more good for white people [and non-Black people] in solidarity with the Trayvon Martin case to recognize all the ways they (we) are Zimmerman.

As in, if you live in a "safe" suburban or gated community that is mostly white and that is considered a "good" neighborhood because it excludes people of colour [especially excluding Black people] then you benefit from the same conditions that created Zimmerman.

If you benefit from "police protection" to your property that depends on racial profiling of people of colour [especially Black people] and brutality towards them then you take part in the same systems that create Zimmerman.

If you have the racial privilege to work, move, live in mostly white spaces and have limited contact with... [Black people], particularly "low income" ...[Black people], then you live with the same social and economic policies of casual segregation that create Zimmerman.

It's good that people recognize the injustice of Trayvon Martin's death, but if that recognition is not accompanied by the work to recognize and undo the systematic economic, social, educational and employment policies that create neighborhoods where Black people are seen as threatening trespassers - and how people benefit from this racial privilege - then no true anti-racist work can occur.

Nobody wants to say "I am Zimmerman" but until we recognize how Zimmerman reflects institutionalized racism there will continue to be more Trayvons."

: El Jone
— with Melanie Matining.

1 comment:

Sara Koopman said...

along similar lines is the great video post I am not Trayvon up at http://www.upworthy.com/a-perspective-on-george-zimmerman-that-every-person-should-hear?g=5