In the wake of the conclusion of the George Zimmerman trial, in which Mr. Zimmerman was acquitted of any wrongdoing in the death of Trayvon Martin, a number of pundits and personalities of all types have decried the racial element of the process. Because Mr. Zimmerman is white, they allege, he was set free after killing a young black man. Never mind that Mr. Zimmerman is actually Hispanic; they believe his ethnicity was a decisive factor in his vindication.
Those same voices appear now raised in opposition to the acquitting jury’s verdict – that is, in de facto accusations of racism against a majority of those jurors. No such voice has produced a viable scrap of evidence Mr. Zimmerman acted in any way other than that necessary to defend himself when confronted with deadly force. Despite that absence of evidence, they appear dead-set on believing that Mr. Zimmerman was set free because of his race, not because of the lack of any evidence contrary to his explanation. The logical corollary of the fact these commentators believe Mr. Zimmerman was wrongfully set free is that they also believe he should not have been set free, which in turn correlates with the fact they believe he was guilty of killing Mr. Martin without justification. They have yet to identify proof in support of that position, which leads to the conclusion that those same people who believe Mr. Zimmerman was acquitted because of his race now appear intent on assuming his guilt based on nothing more than that same race. The absurdity of the double standard is palpable.
Editor’s note: The post above reflects no opinion regarding the facts of the case; rather, it is simply critical of those who assume a defendant’s guilt (or innocence) on the basis of nothing more than race, regardless of the assumption or the race. It is as wrong to assume a man is guilty (or innocent) of a crime because he is white as it is to assume the same thing because he is black. The post above is critical of knee-jerk racial assumptions.