Below are some postings on these subjects. First, on the connection with violence against Indians:
Stand Your Ground for Trayvon Martin and All Our Children
By Ruth Hopkins
Unfortunately, this is not a new phenomenon. The United States has a long and twisted colonial history of exercising brutal vigilante justice against men who are not white. Often these horrendous murders had little to do with the actual procuring of justice and more to do with enforcing white supremacy. While most people are aware of the lynching of innocent African American men in the south, most do not know that Asian, Hispanic, and Native American men have all been victims of lynch mobs too.
Thousands of Native men have been lynched since European invaders arrived. One of the earliest lynchings happened in 1642. After his village of over 100 men, women and children were slaughtered, a young, unidentified Native man was hacked to death by Dutch settlers in the area now called New York City. That’s just one example.
In my mind, Zimmerman being acquitted of murder and manslaughter was an absolute travesty, but I can’t say that I was shocked. There are two Americas. There’s the old guard, the ‘white picket fence’ colonial America, built on land stolen from Indigenous peoples over the broken backs of African slaves, where PoC are still second class citizens who are seen as less than equals, and where although not all of its actors maybe white, the agenda of white privilege indeed dominates, and then there is the new guard--a progressive 2013 citizenry comprised of those the old guard would call ‘the Other,’ who face oppression every single day yet push forward with determination and hope. When Zimmerman was found not guilty, the old guard flexed its muscle. But I believe this is one of a few last gasps before it dies for good. We will pull together. We must, for the sake of Earth and all our children.
Trayvon Martin Verdict: The Difference Between The Law and What's Right
Many human rights groups and activists decried the verdict shortly after it was announced with protests across the country, yet as usatoday.com addressed, the verdict was no surprise to many lawyers. Those protests as usatoday.com reported were by many people who feel that the bigger issues of race and justice are unresolved.
“The most important thing we can do as Native Americans is to raise our voices against injustice, to affirm our love for one another, and to show that we stand together with the Black community. Indian country knows in the most profound way, the hurt and historical legacy of centuries of oppression, war, termination, and disease all now deeply baked into a system of institutional racism. The lesson is that we as a nation cannot be afraid to look at race. And as a nation, America cannot grow into who it is supposed to be until we address race and racism head on,” Chris Stearns, chairman of the Seattle Human Rights Commission said in an e-mail to ICTMN. “From a human rights perspective, not only is there a fundamental human right to life, there is also a central human right to be free from discrimination. Article 7 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that all people ‘are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law.’ Article 2 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination requires all governments to ‘take effective measures to review governmental, national and local policies, and to amend, rescind or nullify any laws and regulations which have the effect of creating or perpetuating racial discrimination wherever it exists.’ We have a right to not only expect, but to demand, better from our government.”
Violence toward blacks, Indians, and other minorities exemplify what America is all about. Namely, demonizing anyone who isn't a white, male Christian in the (fictional) image of Jesus.
Zimmerman verdict: A green light for racist vigilantes
This verdict allows every paranoid, sub-intelligent, vigilante with a gun to go on victimizing black youth
By Rich Benjamin
Not just a cautionary tale on racial profiling and vigilante justice, Trayvon’s needless death is a devastating lesson on the paranoid logic of gun capitalism. Zimmerman claims he didn’t feel safe. Did Trayvon feel safe? What about his safety? After all, the youth was shot by a multi-racial vigilante assailant—with a troubling history with law enforcement—in a multiracial gated community.
When will we muster the resolve to stop deaths from gun violence? For goodness sake: Why wouldn’t the Aurora shooting and the Newtown massacre force us all to confront the illusory sense of safety in our communities?
Regeneration Through Violence, The Fatal Environment, Gunfighter Nation: Richard Slotkin’s masterful historical trilogy on this country’s long-standing love affair with vigilantism, cruelty, and gun violence reveals as much about Zimmerman and this tragedy as does his trial transcripts—or any news media. This tragedy rips bare all the thorny issues Richard Slotkin exposes in that brilliant trilogy.
The questions demand: How does a legal establishment maintain justice in a world getting browner by the day? And in a nation that feels the need to “regenerate” itself through violence? What will this country do to keep young people safe?
The Slotkin trilogy shows us how America’s frontier myths still dominate our violent politics and culture.
George Zimmerman killed the presumption of innocence
In an era of drones and NSA excess, the Zimmerman verdict reaffirms that like Trayvon, too many are presumed guilty
By David Sirota
Explaining the Zimmerman-like aggression against the Awlakis and thousands of others who find themselves targeted by U.S. drone strike missiles, the federal government later offered up the Zimmerman Principle, repeating the same sentiment that Zimmerman expressed during his cellphone call to non-emergency responders.
Whereas Zimmerman told non-emergency responders that Martin “looks like he’s up to no good,” the New York Times reported that Obama’s indiscriminate drone bombing, which “counts all military-age males in a strike zone as combatants,” presumes that people in a targeted area are “probably up to no good.” In other words, when it comes to military policy, the Obama administration is George Zimmerman perceiving the world as filled with Trayvon Martins supposedly “up to no good”—and who supposedly therefore deserve to die.
It is, of course, no coincidence that, whether African-Americans like Martin or Arabs like the Awlakis, those most affected by the Zimmerman Principle’s presumption of guilt tend to be people of color.
As has been the case throughout this country’s history, being racially, ethnically or religiously classified as non-white or “other” by America still means being presumed guilty (and certainly more guilty than others). Indeed, despite all the vapid paeans to our allegedly “post-racial” or “colorblind” ethos, we see that truth everywhere.
We see it in the disproportionate targeting of minorities through programs like “stop and frisk.” We see it in a CIA-directed police department targeting Muslim communities for surveillance. We see it in Arizona’s racial profiling law that aimed to weaken the requirement for probable cause. We see it in the proliferation of “stand your ground” laws that disproportionately protect white folk whose presumption of black guilt leads them to gun down African-Americans. And we see it in a drug war whose deployment of resources presumes that communities of color are more guilty than other communities.
Columbus brought this mentality from the Old World and it's still with us today. It needs to stop, now.
For more on the subject, see:
America's culture based on violence
Changing our gun culture
Newtown shootings show America's pathology
White = sick, brown = deviant
Sikh shootings reflect white supremacy