In pondering the verdict in the George Zimmerman case and the hostility it caused in the minds of the minority community, it dawned on me that perhaps the biggest cause of this hostility was the role of the press. In all of the press photos for the duration of this case, George Zimmerman was portrayed as a large man. In fact, he had gained so much weight over the course of the trial from excessive eating due to stress. On the other hand, Trayvon Martin was portrayed as a 14-year-old goodie two-shoes when he was in fact a 17-year-old young man. The press never showed comparable photos of how the two men looked at the time of the shooting. In fact, Martin was much taller than Zimmerman and his weight may have been closer to Zimmerman’s, if not more. So this wasn’t a case of a grown man killing an innocent little boy as portrayed by the press, but rather an apparent confrontation of equals. When you factor in that Zimmerman was a rather soft individual (physically) and Martin had a better physique, it is no wonder that Zimmerman feared for his life.
The constant portrayal of these two men fostered a feeling of racial hostility among the black community. I wonder if the situation would have been the same if Martin were white and Zimmerman were black. It seems to the minority community that any time there is an altercation between the races, the black individual is always innocent and the white party is always guilty. It’s time to put this political correctness behind us and get on with the business of life.
David J. Didimamoff