Tag Archives: hoodie

Even when Richard Cohen’s a racist, he’s a joke

I can’t believe how much time I’ve spent parsing this “On the issue of racism I’m more or less a centrist” editorial of Richard Cohen’s currently dropping jaws across the internet. I’m not about to indulge him, or his dimwitted attempt to shake up what he believes is America’s too-polite racial politics [Mr. Cohen? Can I get you a seat near the window?], but I really do want to understand what he’s trying to get at. So here goes:

I don’t like what George Zimmerman did, and I hate that Trayvon Martin is dead. But I also can understand why Zimmerman was suspicious and why he thought Martin was wearing a uniform we all recognize.

If it’s something ‘we all recognize’, it must be true. So is Cohen saying we can tell a criminal by his clothes?

But I’m tired of politicians and others who have donned hoodies in solidarity with Martin and who essentially suggest that, for recognizing the reality of urban crime in the United States, I am a racist. The hoodie blinds them as much as it did Zimmerman.

Yes, he is. Criminals do like to wear hoodies. That’s how poor George Zimmerman recognized the ‘uniform’ yet knew nothing of Martin’s literal underlying innocence. On the other hand, it was politicians who remained willfully ‘blind’ to this:

. . the public knows young black males commit a disproportionate amount of crime. In New York City, blacks make up a quarter of the population, yet they represent 78 percent of all shooting suspects — almost all of them young men.

Black kids do like to commit crimes. So, to sum up:

The result was a quintessentially American tragedy — the death of a young man understandably suspected because he was black and tragically dead for the same reason.

. . that’s just how the dominoes fell. </cohen>

For many Americans, the tragedy came about because George Zimmerman made dangerous assumptions based on someone’s appearance. For Richard, it happened once Zimmerman made realistic assumptions for the same reasons. Or, in shorter fashion, it was Trayvon’s fault.


Say goodbye to Trayvon

Well he’s been dead for awhile. But it’s the Thrilling Big Trial that’s now about to go away, forever. So you all better hurry up and get in your final shots.

Cuz didn’t you think he was a loser? A gol ‘teef welfare waste? A quintessential n*gger? Didn’t you figure him for a gangsta punkass? And haven’t you seen him before, somewhere? This (snort) Tray-Von? Wasn’t he quite the strapping young buck, and didn’t George Zimmerman give him just what he deserved that fateful night?

At that point, the defense attorney displayed a shirtless photo of the 17-year-old African-American wearing only a hat with his bare chest and shoulders exposed. In the photo, which was originally released to the media by Zimmerman’s defense team in May, Martin sits expressionless on a couch.

O’Mara continued to show the photo to the jury for nearly two minutes as he explained that autopsy photographs did not show Martin’s “muscle tone.”

“But here’s him three months before that night, it’s in evidence, take a look at it,” he said. “Because this is the person… who George Zimmerman encountered that night. This is the person, who all of the evidence was attacked — or attacked George Zimmerman, broke his nose or something close to it and battered him on something.”

Don’t blame the establishment. It was his defenders that trafficked in race. His family, his friends. The liberal media. They wanted to make the criminal a hero. Haven’t they tried to turn this killing into a Thing? Isn’t it appalling? Isn’t it disgusting? To hang a murder rap on some poor fellow for no reason?

“This was a case brought because of political pressure — race politics in this country. I hate to say it: I hold the Rev. Al Sharpton in much higher regard than many of my colleagues . . but I totally believe that the Rev. Al is the catalyst behind the murder-two charge six weeks after the incident . . I think it is a self-defense situation, a classic self-defense when you strip it of all the trappings.”

Because, tell me. Wasn’t Sanford, the community – stripped of other considerations – overrun with these thugs? And weren’t they all black? Be honest with me now. They’re all black. He was black, too.

“I see those six ladies [in the jury] putting themselves on that rainy night, in that housing complex that has just been burglarized by three or four different groups of black youngsters from the adjacent community. So it’s a dark night, a 6-foot-2-inch hoodie-wearing stranger is in the immediate housing complex. How would the ladies of that jury have reacted? I submit that if they were armed, they would have shot and killed Trayvon Martin a lot sooner than George Zimmerman did.”



Thomas Sowell: Trayvon Martin – know what I mean?

Pictured (l to r): Tommie O'Guinness, Victim O'Fashion

Shorter Thomas Sowell, National Review:

“Geraldo was right. I have no idea what happened in Florida. Minority youths dress like hoodlums. You can fire at unarmed men when they want your gun.
I nearly shot a guy. Irish neighborhoods are tough. I look Irish.”


When everybody looks evil to you, racism comes naturally

One a.m. here in Los Angeles, in the Venice area. Time to take a walk. I’ve been doing this recently, going on 2 or 3 mile walks. It gets me thinking, and it gets me around to see the neighborhood. I assume it’s good exercise as well. I can imagine myself doing this when I’m older, when walking a few miles will be a big deal. I’d run the three miles, but my back is beat to hell, so it’s walking for now.

I’m not keen on doing this so late, but I’m not worried. There are a few criminals around, but the odds of being accosted by one are very low. I also assume they’d prefer to pick on a better target. At 5’8″ and 185 lbs., I could be a dangerous victim. Being a blue-eyed Irish American with a shaved head and a beard probably adds to the safety factor. People are far more likely to approach and ask me if I could help push their cars than to cough up my wallet.


So I go down to the corner, and I cross the street. The two penny-ante drug dealers are there. After about midnight or so, they’re always there. One of them is wearing a hoodie. Half a mile up an eerily quiet neighborhood street, some guy rides slowly by me on a bike, and he’s wearing a hoodie. And me, I’m wearing one, too. Like I said, I have a shaved head, and the early morning is cool, so I haven’t warmed up yet. That’s three out of four.


The Martin tragedy has played out in a nearly perfect way to reaffirm both sides of the political divide. To conservatives, Trayvon’s a candy-thieving, dope-smoking teen who played gangsta on his Facebook page by calling himself “nigga.” Those punks, when you want to know what they’re doing in your neighborhood, they knock you down and beat you. To liberals, Trayvon’s just a black kid out to do no one harm, merely walking down the sidewalk when he’s 9-1-1’d, accosted, beaten and shot dead. You take the kid’s skin color out of the story, and he’s alive and well today. The two sides are now staring into looking glasses, shouting at the perceived other, “See? SEE?!?” I doubt anything we now learn of the murder will ever change this expression of dual righteousness. We’re stuck.


This is where I began to try to get past the entrenched thinking, when I began my walk. Here’s the thing:

To conservatives, it is proper that Americans see themselves first as debased souls. This is the legacy of historic, self-hating Christianity, to be drummed into you in childhood. You stink. And because of that, there’s not much you deserve to get in life. Sex, pleasure, money, leisure time, even healthcare — these should not be given to the ugly and dirty. You have to earn these things. And you earn them through sacrifice.

Until then, you have no right to be blessed with American Spoils. Those are the rewards you get by accepting your nasty self and killing it. You want sex? You must sacrifice your freedom by entering into the marriage covenant. You want money? You must sacrifice your free will by doing what the boss tells you. You want healthcare? You must sacrifice your choices by staying with one employer for five, or ten, or twenty years. Then you can have it. Good boy, now run along and get yourself a check-up.


What’s this got to do with the Martin killing? It sets up the essential tragedy and divide. Long before there was a fist fight, conservatives saw the politics of whatever could happen clearly. I’m not sure, to their minds, if it mattered at all what happened next.

Zimmerman is the man. He’s been married, he’s been employed. He’s accepted his true nature and sacrificed it for a share of the Spoils. He’s doing everything he should, in just the right way. And he’s a neighborhood watch guy. He knows about the essential rotten ways of people. Hell, he’s doing whatever he can to fight it.

Trayvon is the boy. With his iced tea and candy, he’s just your mindless pleasure-seeking force of defiant nature. You can bet he doesn’t do what his teachers tell him to do. He breaks the law and smokes pot. And he brags about being a “nigga,” as if that weren’t the height of anti-social narcissism.

You contrast the two, and, for conservatives, it is epic drama. To them, the guy who’s playing the Christian role is in the clear. He has every right to confront the unrepentant kid. Who are you? What are you doing here? Who the hell do you think you are? A good conservative will prefer to live in a world full of these neighborhood watch captains. Evil, as always, must lose out.

But what Zimmerman did was wrong. In a civil society, absent actual evidence of wrongdoing, he’s got no business stalking and harassing a teenager because he’s black. Right-wingers, of course, would protest the indictment. No, they’re not being racist at all, they’re just being careful. After all, look how many evil people there are in the world. But when your personal and political beliefs command you to be contemptuous of everyone else, secure in knowing your neighbors are inferior beings — to the point of accosting and occasionally killing them — what’s the difference?


The Trayvon Martin reaction getting bizarre

You know how certain events get caught in the wind? How, at a certain point, the reactions get unhinged from the tragedy? How the waving and yelling become a spectacle all their own? We hit that point yesterday.

You know the Martin tragedy has hit the Fellini phase when:

1.) They trot out the shooter’s close black ‘friend,’ who’s twice his age.
2.) The friend can’t hear “fucking coons,” but he can hear “fucking goons.”
3.) The friend informs America that “goon” is a “term of endearment.”
4.) And, trust him, no one uses that racial “epitaph” any more.

I’m to assume the killer’s black buddies, a bunch of TV anchormen in their 50s, he calls “goons” because he’s not about to shoot them as they’re all good friends. Right. Meanwhile, the Fox News merchandise site has stopped selling hoodies. Because they’re just journalists, folks, and they don’t take sides on the news. Audio/video:


Geraldo Rivera blames Trayvon’s gangsta style

The breakfast bunch at Fox News decided to toss the tragic killing of teen Trayvon Martin around this morning. Hey, no wonder the other networks have been doing it — this is fun.

Anyway, with mountains of Murdoch’s scratch only bedding silverfish, they figured they could afford a Colored Guy for analysis. Geraldo Rivera threw his Vault Cracker brand detective kit into the back of a Chrysler Asshole, and streaked away.

Thinking hard, he pressed himself:

“What really killed Trayvon Martin? Fox News wants to know. It won’t be good enough for me to say, ‘Racism.’ Or ‘White paranoia.’ That’d be like me telling Wile E. Coyote about ACME gunpowder. I’ll have to give them something else.”

And with that, the legendary TV sleuth set off to re-create the entire murder in his head. The neighborhood watch captain, the police phone call, the warning to leave Trayvon alone, the kid running from the murderous lunatic, the confrontation, the shot ringing out. All of it played out in slow motion in Colored Guy’s movie memory. And that’s when He figured it all out. Wow. He came upon the missing piece of the puzzle: what really killed Trayvon Martin.

Excitedly, Geraldo puttered off to Fox studios. He sat down with the breakfast bunch:

“Geraldo, homie, tell us. What really killed Trayvon Martin?

“I’ll tell you, Brian. What really killed the poor boy was . . his jacket.”

“I think the hoodie is as much responsible for Trayvon Martin’s death as George Zimmerman was. When you see a kid walking down the street . . People look at you and what’s the instant identification? What’s the instant association? Its crime scene surveillance tapes. Every time you see someone stick up a 7-Eleven, the kid is wearing a hoodie. Every time you see a mugging on a surveillance camera or get the old lady in the alcove, it’s the kid with a hoodie. You have to recognize that this whole stylizing yourself as a gangsta — you’re going to be a gangsta wannabe? Well, people are going to perceive you as a menace. That’s what happens. It is an instant reflexive action.”

Trayvon could have picked a less provocative coat. So both sides are to blame.

“I understand that the reaction might be overzealous or even irrational in some extent, I mean, when you look at the statistics. But you’re not going to rehabilitate the hoodie. Stop wearing it! You know the old Johnny Cash song, ‘Don’t take your gun to town, son. Leave your gun at home.’ There are some things that are almost inevitable.”

Personal responsibility, folks. Now you know.