The tragic case of Trayvon Martin we’ve all heard about has spurned an extraordinary discussion on the inner racial tensions in this country. The President himself highlighted this point in his speech, but I wish he emphasized how the law played out in this case. The trial went on for over 4 weeks, and the jurors that heard it spent 14 hours discussing it behind close doors…who else has spent that much time with it? Every one of the jurors came back with the same decision: innocence for Zimmerman. There simply wasn’t enough evidence, and I liked how one person I heard said it: every witness to the case is either dead or biased. That in itself also highlights something that no one seems to be talking about: the failures of the American court system. Granted, I’m no lawyer, and one of the prosecutors of the case in a press conference admitted the mistakes of our system, but defend it as the best in the world. I think I could agree with that. How to fix a system where so much bias exists is a challenge, and I wouldn’t know where to start to accommodate for the failures of man. On an off note, the jury system is something that has also always baffled me. I certainly wouldn’t trust the justice for the death of my child to a random selections of six Americans…would you? But then again, would I trust justice to some old white guy that has never been out of a gated community in his life if I was from the hood? That’s another challenge for our system.
But back on to race: how important is it, really, to this trial? I find it difficult to believe that Zimmerman just shot Martin because he was black. Certainly, Zimmerman profiled him. He followed him, and the phone tapes show that he was an obvious racist. But what happened that night is speculative, and the thousands of protestors around this country have probably no better speculations than me. I think it much less fair to call out the jurors as racists. The prosecutors spent some serious time picking 3 of those jurors…why? Those prosecutors weren’t stupid. They had reasons. The media probably won’t just say, because when does the media ever explain things properly? That said, I don’t think protesting the trial changes anything at all. The protestors need to ask themselves: does screaming and flailing your signs around on the streets change racial tensions? There are better ways that they should involve themselves with. The justice system has decided, and there isn’t much else it can do.