Dear Robert Zimmerman: Flipping the bird isn’t an offense punishable by death
While we were putting today’s issue to press, a new bizarre drama surrounding George Zimmerman, the man who shot Trayvon Martin to death in Sanford last year, was unfolding. And Zimmerman has his brother to thank for this one.
The Wonkette blog pointed out Zimmerman’s brother, Robert Zimmerman Jr., went on a Twitter rampage yesterday and compared Martin to another teen in Georgia who allegedly shot a baby in the face while attempting to rob his mother. Zimmerman posted an image to Twitter showing photos of 17-year-old De’Marquise Elkins flipping the bird and an image of Trayvon Martin doing the same thing, with the line: “A picture speaks a thousand words. Any questions?”
He then goes on to expound on his egregious photo comparison:
After he was called out for his completely racist commentary, he insists that he’s not being racist – it’s the system. The only reason his brother was arrested, he says, is because Martin was black and George Zimmerman was “alleged white.” Not, you know, because Zimmerman killed an unarmed kid.
He also insists tweets (repeatedly) that everyone has a right to self-defense.
And most recently, he insisted that George Zimmerman would have been brutally murdered by Trayvon Martin if he hadn’t shot the teen to death first.
Why? Because Trayvon Martin was “threatening2kill” the large man who was pursuing him, and “moving2disarm some1″ who had an (allegedly) concealed weapon. And in doing so, clearly, he was guilty of “causing” his own death.
Zimmerman’s not helping his brother’s case (or public perception) any. All his posts have managed to do is dredge up the bottom-feeders who eat this kind of thing up, galvanize the people who are racist and are dying for another reason to take potshots at a dead kid, and disgust everybody else.
1. Reverse racism is also racism, and playing the white (or “alleged white”) victim card is no better than playing any other racial card.
2. Flipping the bird is not an offense punishable by death. Neither is having a Twitter handle that’s crude, stupid or obnoxious (something Robert Zimmerman repeatedly takes Martin to task for, as if it’s also proof that the unarmed Martin was a threat).
3. Self-defense is a fundamental right. Even for an unarmed 17-year-old kid being followed by an adult man after dark. There’s a pretty good chance Martin was also pretty scared for his life when he was stalked by a dude who obviously came close enough to him to get into a fight, then shoot him.
4. Martin allegedly punched Zimmerman and broke his nose, but he didn’t have a weapon on him. How was he planning to kill Zimmerman exactly?
5. If Zimmerman’s weapon was not already out or revealed, why would Martin have been “moving2disarm” him? How would he have known Zimmerman had a gun? If Zimmerman revealed that he had a gun, doesn’t that mean that Martin had even more reason to panic and try to defend himself? And doesn’t that take us back to the right to self-defense again?
Finally, Zimmerman makes a big issue of the alleged attempt by the media to hide negative images of Martin from public view. He wants to know why everyone’s “hiding” photos of the kid giving the finger, dressed in gangsta-looking clothes, looking sullen. Well, here you go, in plain sight – and pretty easy to find with a simple Google search – is a photo of Trayvon Martin. Being a 17-year-old. Giving the finger. Like kids on Twitter and Facebook do all the time. BFD. It doesn’t make him a killer. It doesn’t make him an aspiring murderer. It’s not a crime. And it doesn’t make it acceptable to compare him to a kid who shot a baby in the face.
Whether George Zimmerman is guilty or not, Robert Zimmerman Jr. is definitely guilty of being an idiot.