Living in Florida has never been a dream come true. The Sunshine State and all its sunshine laws are all misnomers. The first year I lived here, there was the election debacle and things have not improved since then. Americans scream for justice and do little to work for it. Floridians are much the same, although I have some friends who put us all to shame with social justice work.
If you want justice work for and that means more than just talking about it on Facebook. Write and call your representatives and let them know what you as a voter wants. Hey, maybe you can post it to their Facebook page, if they have one.
Support Education… Don’t just tell a teacher how grateful you are that they are around to do a job you won’t want, but read to your kids at night, make sure that they do their homework and know that getting an education is not just about going to school when they feel like it. When you write your representatives let them know that you think teachers deserve more pay and your kids need their teachers to be awake not exhausted from working three jobs.
If you doubt that education played a factor in this trial look at how Rachel Jeantel was ridiculed for her speech and mannerisms. She reacted the way her life has taught her to react. She is a product of her surroundings, education and experiences and she did the best for her friend. My heart goes out to her as well as the family of Trayvon.
Get an education yourself. Read and learn the difference between facts and opinions. Propaganda isn’t just something for history.
Justice isn’t given. It has to be demanded and knowledge helps you navigate the tangled system we have.
I cussed and pounded the steering wheel when I heard the news. Then I made the decision not to carry my outrage to Facebook until I could do something constructive. So time this week spent on other writing projects will be split writing letters and working for something better for the next young man confronted on the streets.
It may not be much, but it is what I know I can do. It will be easy for some people to call for us to let things be and let the jury’s verdict stand, but it isn’t the verdict we are protesting. It is the host of other issues that this case brought to the surface. Those issues need to be address and worked on.
As a woman of mixed descent I can tell you that racism is still very much real. There are times when I feel like a spy since racists and bigots feel free to talk in front of me. They take my pale skin as a sign that I am comfortable with privileges given to me because of it and agree with it. And yes, I do acknowledge that White Privilege exists and I have benefited from it. This isn’t to say that I haven’t worked hard, because I have and will continue to do so, but I cannot ignore that society attaches benefits to those with lighter skin. There is nothing I can do about it beyond working for justice for everyone. Less than a month ago, a woman I work with told me that she “hates black people.” Her words stung and I didn’t react other than to stare. Would she hate me, too? Six years ago, a close friend of mine walked out of my life because he found out about my heritage.
It still exists and really has only become more cunning. Justice is always pictured blind for a reason, but she is not deaf. Criminal Defense Lawyers have very smooth tongues and sometimes she is wooed by pretty words. We also have to remember that the Justice is only as good as the laws which bind her. If the law is injustice than we bind her hands as well as her eyes.
4 thoughts on “Justice: A Work in Progress”
As a former criminal defense attorney, I dont take offense at your statement about the color of our tongues.
What I can say is that none of us was there. None of us really know what happened. Much of the story never gets in front of the jury and most of those laws help the prosecutors from letting a lot of information get to a jury.
Do I agree with the verdict. I DONT KNOW, I wasnt there.
As for your comment on social justice. As long as you have capitalism you will have systems set up to divide the classes. Race is just the easiest one. Look at Bacons Rebellion in Virginia.
True.. The people in Sanford are disappointed with the verdict but they got the trial they wanted. And I think we should commend them for their peaceful protests, looking forward to the future and how they might change things for the better.
I also agree with your comments about capitalism. Thank you for your words.
Nice post Lu. I have a couple of comments:
First, regarding the case, I was lucky enough to hear a lot of the testimony, and quite frankly, in my opinion the prosecution did not prove their case. A lot of the reaction has been against the jury, but I don’t think the prosecution did their job well.
Second, it is unfortunate that there is hate in the world, but it is a fact of life. And it isn’t just race. Look how many have started over religious beliefs. Look at how many doctors have been killed over the choice issue. There is no easy answer , that’s for sure.
Finally, if your close friend walked out of your life because of your heritage, maybe they weren’t as close as you thought.
I agree. The prosecution didn’t prove its case and there is a lot of hate and not just racial bias. I think we need to address all forms of hatred and not allow it to breed in our own hearts.
Caylon was a good friend with a lot of hate in his heart and he couldn’t see pass it. We had never agreed on his attitudes about race so when I found out that I was part black he lost it and we lost each other. I think the big mistake a lot of people make is seeing things one dimensionally and can’t accept when things don’t fit in their world. It was sad and it still stings.
Thank you for your words