If not death then what will inspire blacks to abandon belief in post racial ideology? The Case of Trayvon Martin

In the wake of the Trayvon Martin jury verdict that declared George Zimmerman, not guilty for taking the life of the unarmed black teen, it is my hope that blacks are rethinking whether America is post-racial, coming to the conclusion that she is not and abandoning their embrace of this false ideology. The election of Barack Obama to the U.S. Presidency in 2008 for many blacks, young and old alike signaled a break from America’s founding blemish. If a black man could make it to the White House, surely America must have transcended race; America must be post-racial.

If so, this meant blacks had no more excuses for not succeeding. No more excuses has become the black post-racial mantra the implications of which have been detrimental for blacks in general and deadly in the case of Trayvon Martin, specifically.

Post-racialism dismisses the net effect of more than 250 years of black slavery, 100 years of state sanctioned and Jim Crow racism and the persistent, insidious current day structural racism as reasons for the status of blacks. Instead, post-racialism speculates, racism has just been a pretext blacks use to explain their group’s socioeconomic status relative to whites and other minorities. After post-racialism convinces blacks to believe that racism is not the reason for their deficits, it encourages them to believe that their resulting situation is really their own fault, the result of their irresponsibility.

Confession of post-racialism is widespread among blacks, reaching fever pitch with the election of Barack Obama as President in 2008 about which Will Smith exuded:

“The history of African Americans is such that you want to be a part of America, but we’ve been rejected so much it’s hard to take the ownership and take responsibility for ourselves and this country. It was like, at that second, at that moment, all of our excuses were gone.”

In response to a January 2009 Black Enterprise article No More Excuses, an online comment by an individual named Mary Alice read:

“Praise the Lord!!!

Now we know anything is possible (we knew all along—that is why we kept pushing day after decade after century). No more excuses. It is time for all of us to up our game. Because we can. No more excuses.”

Even President Obama embraces this narrative and frequently uses it when he addresses blacks in general and black males specifically. Using it in his commencement address at Morehouse this past May, he told these black men:

“We know that too many young men in our community continue to make bad choices. Growing up, I made a few myself. And I have to confess, sometimes I wrote off my own failings as just another example of the world trying to keep a black man down. …We’ve got no time for excuses … nobody is going to give you anything you haven’t earned. And whatever hardships you may experience because of your race, they pale in comparison to the hardships previous generations endured….”

And if blacks believe and openly profess these patently false things about themselves then why shouldn’t and why wouldn’t the “Zimmerman’s” of America believe and profess them too?

After all, when asked about whose fault it was that Trayvon was dead, Robert Zimmerman Jr. in his post-verdict interview with Piers Morgan proffered “…I would find… that unfortunately uh he [Trayvon] had the greater hand in his own demise which was causing by his own hand his death. That’s unfortunate but that’s the reality.” When pressed further by Morgan as to whether Robert Zimmerman Jr. believed Trayvon was responsible for his own death, he responded “Absolutely, I believe that.”

It was a bullet in the heart that killed Trayvon Martin, discharged from a gun in the hand of George Zimmerman, yet, post-racialism blames Trayvon Martin for his own death. America is not post-racial and this lie is robbing blacks of their lives and their liberty. Without these, there can be no happiness. That’s the reality.

One thought on “If not death then what will inspire blacks to abandon belief in post racial ideology? The Case of Trayvon Martin

  1. I agree that American should abandon its post-racial ideology, and I will give reasons for thinking so.

    President Barrack Obama “being allowed” to enter into the White House as POTUS should not have been a signal to blacks that America is post-racial. Blacks have been “allowed” to do many things here in America, but not because we were equally qualified nor because we had earned these places. What is happening is that blacks are being given “handouts” so to speak. The idea behind this is that, if they give us a little leeway, a promotion here and there, a little pay raise, just something to make us feel like we are progressing and doing better, we will keep quiet, and remain in this modern day form of slavery. This has been going on for many, many years. We see it as far back as the plantations, when one slave got “promoted” to be the “house negro”, while the others remained to be “field negroes.”

    With regards to President Obama’s speech at Morehouse, I am not surprised at his statements. President Obama has to be in some tough spots at times, and one of them is to appease the masses. He has to publically agree and side with issues that he may not necessarily agree with for the sake of staying in his political office. The POTUS fed into the stereotype when addressing the graduating class at Morehouse. Black people have been “upping our game,” as that poster by the name of Mary Alice told us to. However, again, we can only move as “allowed.” The excuses that some people make are just that, excuses. However, making excuses is not a “black thing”, it’s a people thing. There are lazy people in all ETHNICITIES, not races. There is only one race, and that is the human race. Denying that America is one-sided against blacks, and denying that we are not given the same opportunities as our white counterparts, does a grave disservice to the black community. It keeps us in a perpetual state of delusion. It makes us feel safe and warm inside and we start to forget that even in the year 2013, we are still being racially profiled. We are still being underpaid in corporate America; our black men are still becoming victims of unjust and unwarranted police brutality. Our black men are still being imprisoned at alarming rates, and serve more time than whites for the same crimes. This is not my imagination, nor is it the imagination of anyone. It is OUR reality just for being black in America. I know I will likely be labeled as “racist” by many, mostly by my own people because of my statements. I am not racist by any stretch of the imagination. I love all people that were created by our ONE creator, God. I am simply aware, and my thoughts simply reflect my awareness.

    Addressing the statement made by Robert Zimmerman, it was a shameful thing he said. To say that he believed that Trayvon Martin was responsible for his own death is callous and it’s a statement filled with hate. However, the reaction to the Trayvon Martin killing and the verdict from the trial is a microcosm of what is working in America at large. All of that simply goes to show us that America is most definitely not post-racial. America is in the midst of a racial war that is brewing more each day. For any adult to confess with their mouth and believe in their hearts that it is okay for an adult to racial profile a teen, follow them, fight them, and ultimately murder them, all because of the color of their skin, is cause for more than alarm. That is cause for us all to ponder where our humanity has gone. Where has our love for humankind gone? Why have we stopped practicing “the golden rule?” A man murdered a child and so much of our country agrees that the murder was justified, because the child was black. This is wrong on so many levels. The hatred that has built up over the years that have put ethnicity against ethnicity needs to stop. Sadly, I do not believe this will be a war that will ever end. Until then, I will speak, and I will watch, and hopefully, some of us will begin to wake up, and band together.

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