Skip to main content

A trial should be a crucible for the truth. While the legal outcome remains much in doubt, George Zimmerman’s murder trial is a reminder of the semi-permanence of race and the reality of the color line in post civil rights America.

The Zimmerman trial has revealed several truths so far. Young, dark-skinned, black women testifying in court about life and death matters--and who happen to be “working class” or “poor”--are to be savaged and mocked. The myth of the welfare queen lives on; black, female, and “poor” is to be less than a human being. She is most certainly not due the most basic amount of human respect or dignity.

White America is fascinated by black vernacular speech and how people of color talk in private spaces and among ourselves, as opposed to in public spaces or other interactions where we are subjected to the White Gaze.  

The comments on Twitter, other social media, and the Internet at large, have revealed how one’s relationship to the truth is also very much a function of racial attitudes and political orientation.

Zimmerman’s supporters believe that he is a “victim” and black folks are existentially obligated to submit to white people (and those who identity with White Authority) at all times and in every situation. Most of Zimmerman’s supporters do not know about America’s long history of slave passes, white slave patrollers, or Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger Taney’s infamous ruling in the Dred Scott case that black people have no rights that whites are obligated to respect. Yet, they echo such sentiments across time and space with ease.

Trayvon Martin’s advocates see in his killing one more example (among many thousands) where in the United States, black life is deemed to be cheap and expendable; African-Americans are presumed guilty until proven innocent—even while walking down the street and minding their own business.

While ostensibly a means of getting at the truth of what happened that rainy and dark evening, Zimmerman’s trial has also been a spectacle and a carnival sideshow in America’s centuries-long racial theater.

While talking on the phone to his friend Rachel Jaentel, Trayvon Martin apparently called George Zimmerman, the man who followed him in a vehicle, exited it with a gun, and pursued him against police instructions, a “creepy ass cracker.” In a twist of thinking, and an inversion of what studied, learned, and reasonable people understand about the realities of race and power in America, for colorblind conservative racists, George Zimmerman has been magically transformed into a victim of  “reverse racism.”

Such a troubled relationship to the truth would be the stuff of a great comedy sketch if these serious matters did not involve a young person shot dead by a wannabe cop who imagined himself as possessing a license to kill.

The truth can also be inconvenient: by virtue of his actions and character, George Zimmerman is in fact a "creepy cracker."

The origins of the word cracker are uncertain. What we do know is that Trayvon’s use of “cracker” drew on a long history of mass racial violence by whites against African-Americans that began with the transatlantic slave trade and the plantation system in the “New World.”

“Cracker” is evocative of the sound of the whip, wielded by a white overseer or slave owner, as it lashes and tears black flesh. Cracker is a word that embodies white on black racial violence and tyranny.

Cracker is in no way equivalent to the word nigger.

Were millions of white people killed and enslaved by blacks holding the lash and calling them “crackers?” Were there signs that segregated whites from blacks that read “no crackers need apply” or “crackers sit in the back of the bus”? Were white people burned alive, their bodies defiled, postcards taken of their corpses, and public gatherings where blacks killed “crackers” by the thousands? Were there racial pogroms where blacks running amok, pillaging, raping, murdering and destroying property at will, yelled out for the blood of “crackers” in places like Tulsa, East St. Louis, Chicago, and Rosewood? Were there sundown towns that had signs on their outskirts which told "crackers" “not to let the sun set on them here” or they will be killed?

No. To suggest that the words "cracker" and "nigger" are at all similar is an act which is both intellectually dishonest and a lie.

History is rife with cruel coincidences and ironies. For decades, Sanford, Florida was a sundown town. Blacks were not welcome in its city limits. White racism was so potent in Sanford, Florida that Jackie Robinson, the trailblazing hero who broke the color line in baseball, was not allowed to train there.

When Trayvon Martin called George Zimmerman a cracker he was channeling a sense of existential dread and fear of white racial violence. Trayon’s worries were prescient. George Zimmerman would later shoot and kill Trayvon after racially profiling him.

George Zimmerman is also a creep.

George Zimmerman stalked and followed an innocent person on a rainy night.  Strangers with loaded guns following innocent people around in the dark are almost by definition “creepy.” George Zimmerman has been accused of sexually molesting a relative. He has been visited with a restraining order for domestic battery. Zimmerman has also been in a fight with the police. On the evening he shot and killed Trayon Martin, he was taking a medication which can cause anxiety, violent impulses, aggression, and hallucinations.

As demonstrated by his many phone calls to the police, George Zimmerman is obsessed with harassing and confronting black people who he feels do not “belong” in his neighborhood. Zimmerman is such an extreme Negrophobe that he has even called the police on a black child who was walking down the street.

The throaty rasps of his call to the police and anger that “fucking punks. those assholes they always get away” was that of an obsessive, one whose exhalations were more suited for a phone sex line than a 911 call. George Zimmerman’s obsession with black people and vigilante-ways were that of a deviant, and yes, a creep.

The efforts by colorblind racists, the White Right, and Zimmerman’s defenders to invert reality so that he is a “victim” of “black racism” in the guise of the word “cracker” is part of a larger social dynamic in the Age of Obama. Recent public opinion research has revealed how white folks now believe that “anti-white” "racism" is a bigger problem than systematic discrimination against people of color in the United States.

Fantasies of white oppression are not just the product of disinformation circulated by the Right-wing media. They do serious political work by legitimating the gutting of the Voting Rights Act and affirmative action, as well as distracting the public from how white racism and white privilege continue to systematically disadvantage people of color to the detriment of the country’s economy.

A yearning for a belief in the lie of “white oppression” also fuels the rise of the militia movement and domestic terrorists who believe that Obama is not a legitimate and democratically elected President. The logic which tries to falsely equate “cracker” and “nigger” is also operative in the Herrenvolk dreams of the Tea Party and the Republican Party’s efforts to resuscitate the Confederacy and Civil War era controversies about secession, nullification, and “states rights”. Ultimately, the lie of “reverse racism” and “white oppression” is a means to rewrite history in order to legitimate White power and dominance.

The simplest definition of racism is that it consists of power plus prejudice. On the night when George Zimmerman killed Trayvon Martin, it was Zimmerman with both the power of the gun and who prejudged an innocent person walking down the street by virtue of their skin color as a threat.

Such behavior has been the modus operandi and habit of “creepy ass crackers” in the United States for centuries.

Originally posted to chaunceydevega on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 08:58 AM PDT.

Also republished by Trial Watch, Barriers and Bridges, and Community Spotlight.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (432+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Diogenes2008, indycam, Deep Texan, mallyroyal, aaraujo, TomP, howabout, blueoregon, MKinTN, FrankAletha, vcmvo2, cotterperson, balancedscales, DoReMI, marykk, rocksout, CFAmick, a2nite, rb608, moviemeister76, Kysen, subtropolis, swampyankee, old wobbly, Librarianmom, Kristina40, greengemini, Zack from the SFV, justiceputnam, Jim P, tin woodswoman, Gay CA Democrat, bakeneko, rubyclaire, Chaddiwicker, wuod kwatch, JoanMar, Steven D, tb92, jaebone, Batya the Toon, Heart of the Rockies, seefleur, Chi, collardgreens, oortdust, Empower Ink, LoreleiHI, k9disc, Sarahsaturn, shabbedolle, albrt, T100R, smokeymonkey, Crabby Abbey, SeattleTammy, JBL55, SME in Seattle, GAS, Josiah Bartlett, sawgrass727, hubcap, awesumtenor, No one gets out alive, splashy, trumpeter, Meteor Blades, Loge, JayBat, AlyoshaKaramazov, VTCC73, Nina Katarina, vahana, Dretutz, RantNRaven, doroma, Rosaura, terrybuck, LaughingPlanet, Blue Dream, antirove, samoashark, ColoTim, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, nanorich, teacherken, DoctorWho, marleycat, shortgirl, chimene, tommymet, slowbutsure, Lost Left Coaster, countwebb, PapaChach, Vita Brevis, runfastandwin, Old Sailor, Captain Frogbert, wader, rjnerd, IrishGreg, CA Nana, greenomanic, Lurker in the Dark, Progressif, catwho, implicate order, mikejay611, freakofsociety, cardboardurinal, IndyinDelaware, mimi, Yo Bubba, SanFernandoValleyMom, mrsgoo, kharma, DefendOurConstitution, wasatch, Gurnt, Mylies Voice, cassandracarolina, Karl Rover, Grassroots Mom, Tommye, claude, shaharazade, puakev, anodnhajo, Shotput8, Lying eyes, indubitably, Anima, 88kathy, VA Breeze, jfromga, skeptigal, Joieau, middleagedhousewife, sukeyna, Lorikeet, ladybug53, FogCityJohn, CA ridebalanced, kevinpdx, Late Again, armadillo, mrmango, pixxer, melfunction, confitesprit, ssgbryan, sethtriggs, Ian S, aitchdee, spooks51, Matilda, sunbro, Trendar, second gen, FloridaSNMOM, ruscle, grollen, LanceBoyle, la urracca, high uintas, westwoodmom04, zerelda, PSzymeczek, Matt Z, Dopetron, Tim DeLaney, Chrislove, jes2, nuclear winter solstice, shanikka, cybersaur, maggiejean, MNGlasnant, Plantsmantx, Square Knot, left turn, jeanette0605, flumptytail, Lily O Lady, pipercity1, emeraldmaiden, jayb, Ed in Montana, KenBee, Sixty Something, lunachickie, just another vet, Orlaine, Portlaw, lookit, efrenzy, ashowboat, leonard145b, Brecht, FreeWoman19, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, petulans, third Party please, edg, Nautical Knots, jadt65, shesaid, rbird, blue aardvark, Regina in a Sears Kit House, leftist vegetarian patriot, Christin, tuesdayschilde, citisven, Chitown Charlie, clubbing guy, Mother Mags, The Rational Hatter, sodalis, Jim Domenico, Supavash, kml, rubyr, 2thanks, chantedor, onceasgt, NancyWH, Audri, pitbullgirl65, stormicats, Keninoakland, psnyder, OLinda, maxcat06, SteelerGrrl, Dirtandiron, sillia, Plox, HoofheartedBC, Mimikatz, Carol in San Antonio, newpioneer, raptavio, IreGyre, buffie, greycat, brn2bwild, Steveningen, TracieLynn, nota bene, Alfred E Newman, lgmcp, Vico, MA Liberal, tung sol, elwior, Sassy, NJpeach, Miss Jones, LunarEclipse, Happy Days, earicicle, page394, reflectionsv37, Democats, ridemybike, Habitat Vic, nzanne, cassandraX, tardis10, YucatanMan, MRA NY, JDWolverton, jen, amsterdam, gof, VetSpouse1988, Raggedy Ann, SaraBeth, Jollie Ollie Orange, rambler american, multilee, skywriter, miscanthus, virginwoolf, onionjim, FriendlyNeighbor, most peculiar mama, Denise Oliver Velez, KayCeSF, YaNevaNo, Joes Steven, Lost and Found, K S LaVida, Thinking Fella, Nulwee, edsbrooklyn, Shippo1776, historys mysteries, blueoasis, Corvinus, maybeeso in michigan, hannah, Dallasdoc, Horace Boothroyd III, Fire bad tree pretty, Lepanto, fhcec, NogodsnomastersMary, cyncynical, MikeBoyScout, whoknu, Chitown Kev, dewley notid, titotitotito, mujr, nancyjones, Rogneid, midnight lurker, vixenflem, worldlotus, lcrp, LiberalMegan, Ice Blue, FindingMyVoice, hyper, mookins, alice kleeman, publicv, wildweasels, Mayfly, mamamedusa, glitterlust, klompendanser, rapala, janmtairy, emal, OldDragon, Denny in Seattle, james321, markdd, byebyeblinkie, Aaa T Tudeattack, Robynhood too, VaBreeze, jamess, itsbenj, craiger, MJ via Chicago, Debby, jiffykeen, chicklet, SueM1121, GeorgeXVIII, Pandora, BadKitties, polecat, HappyinNM, langstonhughesfan, AgavePup, Texknight, Patate, Lilyvt, huttotex, randomfacts, lineatus, The Eyewitness Muse, Caneel, devis1, lorla, Bule Betawi, pajoly, Glen The Plumber, NMRed, Eric Nelson, ornerydad, joanne gullion, CaliSista, life is making tacos, joynow, harlinchi, vigilant meerkat, begone, jts327, Midwesterners, fiddlingnero, also mom of 5, Dbug, WakeUpNeo, WFBMM, tubacat, Lujane, Free Jazz at High Noon, cspivey, HCKAD, tomephil, bronte17, donaurora, badlands, coppercelt, nswalls, aravir, Cat Whisperer, dannyboy1, Loudoun County Dem, Sychotic1, TomFromNJ, reginahny, dotsright, spaceshot, mungley, pvasileff, FishBiscuit, varro, Grabber by the Heel, TexasLefty, urnumbersix, camlbacker, exreaganite, JohnnySacks, pamelabrown, Ekaterin, flitedocnm, timewarp, mconvente, RLF, etherealfire, Debbie in ME, Simple, retLT, amparo fan
    •  George Zimmerman is a thug (19+ / 0-)

      And a poseur police-wannabe.  Let's suppose you were walking home from the store one night and some strange man is following you in his car and then gets out and confronts you?  I would have fought this stalker tooth and nail...just like Trayvon did.  George Zimmerman is a sociopath and civil society must be protected from him.

      •  Up until today I was beginning to wonder... (23+ / 0-)

        Why the DA was bringing this to trial and with a 2nd degree murder charge...

        Also, a lot of people have been asking why the prosecutor keeps drawing attention to Zimmerman's usage of the word "Suspect."

        Zimmerman was studying criminal justice and law enforcement at Seminole State Community College, which 3 attorneys commenting on the  trial said would make him familiar with legal jargon... and how to construct a legal narrative that exonerated him to "sell" to the police.

        In short... he is trying to hide the fact that he was the aggressor and used deadly force without justification. Getting punched in the nose does not give you the right to kill someone.

        He got caught in multiple lies today from saying the dispatcher asked him what was Trayvon doing now so that was why he left the car... but the dispatcher never said that... in fact the opposite is true... Zimmerman was told not to follow Martin.

        Zimmerman claimed he wasn't following Trayvon but was looking for a street sign.. except there are only three streets in the development and he has lived there for three years, walks his dog there, and is the head of the neighborhood watch.

        Zimmerman said Trayvon jumped out of the bushes... except there are no bushes where the encounter took place.

        Zimmerman said that he called out for help and that he felt his life was in danger as trayvon put his hand over his mouth and nose and was "smothering" him... except the the recordings of the screaming showed that there were no pauses or breaks in the screaming... it was continuous.... unless of course it was actually Martin who was doing the screaming.

        Zimmrman claimed that Trayvon cried out after being shot and continued to struggle so he pinned his hands outstretched and claimed a neighbor came out at that moment and he asked him to help subdue Trayvon... except the coroner said that one of his heart's ventricle was actually exploded into three pieces and trayvon bleed out internally in 20 seconds after being shot.. Trayvon's hands were found to be under the body by residents who came on the scene moments after the shot... and no neighbor has come forward to verify that Zimmerman asked him to help subdue Trayvon.  

        The list goes on.... "Creepy Cracker"... I'll go with pathological liar!

        •  There is another deception that bothers me that (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Flint, Deep Texan, America Jones, retLT

          I haven't heard anyone bring up, hopefully they did on shows I didn't see

          Because speaking of creepy ass
          his ass is an issue.
          As the doctor was discussing his treatment the day after shooting

          Earlier in her testimony lawyer brings up tender SI joint, she notes it is  she helps define it

          FOLGATE: The S.I. again is the sacroiliac joint, which is the space located, for lack of a better word, in the center of your buttocks.
          She says she gave him Lodine, an anti-inflammatory and discussed home treatment

          Later he brings it up again

          RIONDA: He had complained on a prior occasion of having some back pain of some kind. Do you recall that?

          FOLGATE: I do.

          RIONDA: And had you treated him for that before?

          FOLGATE: I had. It was related to constipation.

          RIONDA: So it was not related to an injury, a physical injury?

          FOLGATE: Correct.

          RIONDA: I apologize. In terms of laceration to the head, you mentioned two of them.

          But today we heard him bring up the doctor saying 'sacroiliac or something' as part of this dreadful attack on him.

          He also said she told him to go to ENT specialist later, they couldn't help him now while it was so swollen and that she said his septum was deviated. Also that she said he didn't need stitches right then. Can't recall exact phrasing but it was like she left it open that he might need them later

          But she said things like this

          FOLGATE: Bruising noted to the nasolabial folds bilateral was welling. The nasolabial folds would be the folds between the nose and the mouth. And there was some swelling noted there and some bruising, so darkening of the skin. No evidence of septal deviation on visual inspection meaning the septum, which is the center part of your nose appeared to be straight and in alignment. No bleeding noted in the nares, which means there is no blood in the nose itself. No hemotempanums of the bilateral ears, which means there's no blood behind the eardrums and no evidence of tonsilar stones, which was a complaint that he had outside of the current reason that he was there.
          and
          RIONDA: You talked about the scalp lacerations that there was no sutures need. In other words, he didn't need any sewing up at all, right?

          FOLGATE: No stitches, correct.

          RIONDA: And you stated in terms of broken nose that we discussed it is likely broken, but does not appear to have septal deviation, swelling and black eyes are typical of this injury.

          FOLGATE: Correct.

          RIONDA: Now, you're there. Did you then recommend something to him in terms of making a definitive determination of whether his nose was broken?

          FOLGATE: My recommendation was that he see an ENT, which is an ears, nose and throat specialist.

          RIONDA: What did he say regarding that?

          FOLGATE: He told me at the time that he was not going to be seen by the ENT.

          As a side note he told lead investigator he weighed something like 185 if I recall. Doc said he weighed 204. That was 100 pounds ago

          Commentators pissed me off today. Due to ads I sometimes switched statement and pretty much heard everyone talking like testimony had all already been heard, why were they showing it and how great it was for Zimmerman, oh he was so cooperative, open, honest

          This cop at least brought up he lived there 3 years, was neighborhood watch guy and there were only 3 streets in the division, how could he not recall the street name.
          Zimmerman claims bad memory, he has always had a bad memory
          but he remembers "the suspect" saying movie lines
          You got a problem now home boy (just before the punch)
          you're going to die today
          You got me.

          Really?

          and with denial he was following him a reminder of that is just what following is
          real doubt that he wasn't just in there looking for him
          Lots of things, it wasn't just letting him tell the story

          Still so strange zimmerman said he was screaming but it stopped at the gun shot. Why wouldn't he keep screaming, he still thought he was a threat or he could scream for an ambulance.  Screams were utterly silenced after the shot
          Good point about screaming while gagged and  suffocating

          If the jury is like the commentators that isn't good.
          And I am creeped ass out that one of the ladies on the jury had referred to the protests as riots...
          That shows a way of thinking

          btw Rachel Jaentel was right... they had the phone, cops call last number spoken to

          Why didn't they? It isn't a new thing and you don't have to watch 48 hours to know that. How could they have his phone and not use it to try to ID him

    •  More bullshit to muddy up the fact (0+ / 0-)

      More bullshit to muddy up the fact an unarmed man was shot to death by a man stalking him.

      By the way, I thought the term was "creepy ass cracker"?

      Regardless, what the hell difference did it make what Martin may have called Zimmerman?  He could have called Zimmerman a "fill_in_the_blank" and it still didn't justify losing one's life.  

      Was the defense attorney trying to insert some type of "fightin' words" scenario?  

  •  Until I read your diary (26+ / 0-)

    I thought cracker was saltine cracker ,
    plain white , no nutritional value , not worth much , etc etc etc .
    Crack of the whip , crack of the gun , makes sense .
     

    The standard you walk past is the standard you accept. David Morrison

    by indycam on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:09:35 AM PDT

  •  As a white, I've never been called a cracker to my (26+ / 0-)

    face.  I suppose it would bother me because it would suggest I was a racist, but it has none of the historic connontations of the n-word.  

    Good post, chauncy.

    Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

    by TomP on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:09:52 AM PDT

    •  If you'd grown up poor in a diverse (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Keone Michaels, UbuRoi, claude

      urban community and repeatedly been attacked because of the color of your skin, your views would matter.

      But what you're doing is what middle class privileged white guys who want to seem progressive do.

      You're assuming your middle-class life is common to all people who are white, and from that point you're going on to opine about the meaning of hate speech that you don't understand.

      Mr. Universe is a known degenerate Robotophile, and his sources include former Browncoat Traitors. What is their agenda in leaking top secret information about the Reavers and endangering us all?

      by JesseCW on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:13:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I thought "cracker" was supposed to be (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, mrblifil, IreGyre, Belle Ame

         specific to the state of Georgia. During the years of segregated baseball there was even a Negro League team called the Atlanta Black Crackers. I never could understand that one. More recently I was reacquainted with the word when Chef from South Park sometimes referred to the students as little cracker children.

          The only racial/ethnic slurs I have ever been called out here in CA were anti-Semitic ones. The stupid bigots couldn't even get it right as I am an "Armo" (derogatory term for Armenians) not a Jew...

          Excellent diary, yeah that Zimmy guy is definitely a creepy cracker. Extra points for alliteration also.

      Diehard Swingnut, disgruntled Democrat, age 54, new CA-30

      by Zack from the SFV on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:25:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  This from Wikipedia (5+ / 0-)

        under "Atlanta Crackers," which ws a white  minor league basegall team before the Braves moved to Atlanta following the 1965 season:

        Origin of the team's name

        According to Tim Darnell, who wrote The Crackers: Early Days of Atlanta Baseball, the origins of the team name is unknown.[5]

        Darnell cites several possibilities as to why this name was chosen:
        A term that means a poor, white southerner.
        Someone who is quick and efficient at a task.
        In reference to plowboys who cracked the whip over animals.
        A shortened version of "Atlanta Firecrackers", the earlier 1892 minor league team.

        The second definition lines up with referring to a particularly precise and compelling small group of musicians as a crack band. For what that's worth

        Have you heard? The vice president's gone mad. - Bob Dylan, 1966

        by textus on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:45:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  There are Florida crackers (2+ / 0-)

        We grew up with that term in the 50's, 60's and 70's.

        Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

        by splashy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:03:02 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  "Florida cracker" originally referred to cowboys (5+ / 0-)

          who worked on the large cattle ranches that covered much of the interior in pre-citrus days. (Even today, Florida has more cattle than Texas does.) It was a reference to them cracking their whips to move the cattle along.

          In the area of Pennsylvania where I grew up, on the other hand, near Allentown, "cracker" referred to the somewhat benighted folks who lived in the coal-mining regions just to the north (as in "coal-cracker").

          •  I remember being on dairies in Florida (0+ / 0-)

            When I was a child with my father. He had friends in the dairy business.

            Perhaps that's where we picked it up. It was a term of pride, because the crackers were different from the tourists that ran up north when the hurricanes started up.

            Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

            by splashy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:55:35 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  there are Georgia crackers (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        IreGyre

        a set of cousins of mine, all born in south Georgia were routinely referred to by their mom as 'Georgia Crackers' .  Sand flats and piney woods country close to north Florida.  

        •  I've heard that too (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jfromga

          From my father's side of the family. They have roots in Georgia and Mississippi. His parents are buried (interred?) in New Orleans.

          Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

          by splashy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:56:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I have been called that and more (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Belle Ame

      Multiple times.  I have also been called "white bitch" (and I am not a female...so explain that one).  In every instance that I was called cracker or some other term, there was absolutely nothing said before I was called cracker, honkey, or "white bitch."  Nor was I in anyway engaging with the individual to draw that response.  And the tone in which it was delivered certainly wasn't as a "joke" to them.  

      I have also been spit on as a friend and I were walking past a young black man in Boston. It was nuts.  I turned and said, "hey!" And he started yelling and raising his hands.  We walked away pretty quickly and he continued to yell at us as we walked down the block.   I just chalk it up to frustrated young men looking to provoke someone...anyone...even someone that has nothing directly to do with the problem.  They are mad at the world and probably I was just the first person they saw, so ultimately I don't take it personally.  Calling me the names doesn't matter to me...there is nothing you can say or call me that will offend me.  Why let words or someone else have that power over you?

        The guy that called me "white bitch" actually did it while I was driving in DC.  I had my window down and it was slow moving traffic.  I didn't even notice him beside the street.   But he walked into the middle of the road, leaned his head into my window and yelled it at me.  I just looked at him, shrugged, and kept moving on.  

      On the flip side, in a suburb of DC, I saw an elderly black woman get into a shouting match with two teenage girls at a local Target.  I have no clue what started the whole verbal altercation as I missed that part.  But it ended with that elderly woman drawing herself up and with as much venom in her voice as she could muster she said, "You girls are nothing but niggers."  And you could tell that she thought she had said about the most evil and hateful thing a human being could say to another.  It was like thunder echoing off distant mountains.  The girls just laughed it off and walked away.  I was blown away as I have never publicly heard anyone say that word and with such power or emphasis before.

      The sequester is the new Republican immigration reform plan. Make things so bad here in the US that no one will want to live here.

      by Mote Dai on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 02:06:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Maybe a creepy Tortilla Cracker (4+ / 0-)

    since his heritage also includes Hispanic roots.....

    I just think it's pretty lame that in this day and age, in any context, that it's acceptable to label people by their color and race.  Diaries can be written explaining the how's, they why's etc. - still doesn't justify calling out anyone for their skin.

    The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

    by ctexrep on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:12:20 AM PDT

    •  I can't justify (23+ / 0-)

      Killing anyone based on their skin color.

      Someone follows me late at night and hunts me down they're going to get a lot worse than words.

      "We have only the moral ground we actually inhabit, not the moral ground we claim." - It Really Is That Important

      by Diogenes2008 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:15:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Meaning (31+ / 0-)

        If someone like Zimmerman hunts me down late at night, I'll fight for my life. Hard. Trayvon Martin was the one defending himself, not Zimmerman.

        "We have only the moral ground we actually inhabit, not the moral ground we claim." - It Really Is That Important

        by Diogenes2008 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:19:34 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Sure (0+ / 0-)

        Someone follows me - I can't say I'm going to concern myself with words.

        My point is, how can things be improved?

        I can empathize with T/M - being in his situation - he wasn't shouting out racial slurs at Zimmerman (at least that we know of) and even if he did - can anyone blame him?

        But as people discussing race - is it ever acceptable for a white or Hispanic to use the N word?

        It was widely reported recently, that Paula Dean used the "N" word - but her context was that the person she referred to had a gun to her head - OK - so if you believe her story - is it OK to use that word then?  I also understand her issues  we more than that one case - but I use that as a recent example.

        I still stand by if things are ever to improve, then calling out people by their skin color has to end.

        The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

        by ctexrep on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:31:32 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Hmmmm (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        VClib

        So someone following you at night would be enough for you to give them "worse than words" in reply? And what is "worse than words"?

        Would it depend on the race of the person who's following you?

        Sorry, just not sure what your point is...would they have to do something more than merely follow you to reply with something "worse than word"?

        Black Holes Suck.

        by Pi Li on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:35:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  If I'm running (33+ / 0-)

          And some strange man is chasing me, yeah... I'll fight. I'm five feet tall, and female. You can bet I'll fight for my life.

          Because my life is worth at least as much as that of any strange man who is chasing me at that hour.

          Race doesn't matter. And no, I'm not going to attack someone just for following - but Zimmerman was doing more than just following Martin. He was intimidating him, and was also looking for a confrontation.

          I did have a young Black man run up to me at night shortly after the Zimmerman shooting. It was dark, and he was wearing (of all things) a hoodie.

          Did I run? Did I hide, or become fearful? Did I attack? No. I waited to see what he wanted, because he didn't come across as threatening. Zimmerman DID.

          By the way, the young man who ran up to me wanted to talk religion, so we did. I'm an atheist, but I can have a polite conversation.

          And I have to admit, it struck me I don't see young Black men out walking (or running) at night as dangerous. What's dangerous is people seeing them and assuming they're up to no good.

          "We have only the moral ground we actually inhabit, not the moral ground we claim." - It Really Is That Important

          by Diogenes2008 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:50:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Thanks Diogenes nt (4+ / 0-)

            nosotros no somos estúpidos

            by a2nite on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:52:56 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Of course (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            dov12348, VClib, Be Skeptical

            If Zimmerman did something more than merely follow Martin and ask him questions, as you suggest you believe he did....such as brandish his gun, take a swing at him, or attempt to restrain him, then Martin would be perfectly entitled to respond with "more than words".

            I did have a young Black man run up to me at night shortly after the Zimmerman shooting. It was dark, and he was wearing (of all things) a hoodie.

            Did I run? Did I hide, or become fearful? Did I attack?

            Of course...someone merely approaching you and asking you questions does not give you lease to attack, you acted appropriately and there were no problems.

            Black Holes Suck.

            by Pi Li on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:09:13 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You suggesting that Trayvon acted inappropriately? (25+ / 0-)

              Ah, there is only one way to respond to white authority figures. Yes, sir. Wanna-be cop Zimmerman confronted the suspect who forgot to use the magical term, "yes, sir. No, sir."
              Just ask Rachel.
              Would Trayvon be alive today had he not acted inappropriately?

              Maya Angelou: "Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can't be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest."

              by JoanMar on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:18:28 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Well, I don't know (7+ / 0-)
                You suggesting that Trayvon acted inappropriately?
                I wasn't there, I don't know what Zimmerman did, or how Trayvon reacted, beyond  the "Why are you following me"/"What are you doing here" exchange. I do know that at some point there was a struggle, and Zimmerman shot and killed Martin. Beyond that, the state will have to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that Zimmerman was not acting in self-defence when he did so.
                Ah, there is only one way to respond to white authority figures. Yes, sir. Wanna-be cop Zimmerman confronted the suspect who forgot to use the magical term, "yes, sir. No, sir."
                Well, IF all Zimmerman did was follow Martin and ask him a question, Martin would be free to respond verbally any way he wished. He could have told him to fuck off. He could have said "This is my neighboorhood, get the fuck out of here". What he can't do, assuming Zimmerman didn't do some overt act to threaten him, is respond with force.
                Would Trayvon be alive today had he not acted inappropriately?
                Certainly. Zimmerman should probably had stayed in the car and waited for the police to arrive. When I was a prosecutor, that's certainly the advice I would have given him. So I agree completely that had Zimmerman not set in action the chain of events he did that Martin would still be alive.

                But that, alone, doesn't make Zimmerman legally responsible for the death.  This notion of tort causation doesn't necessarily have a role in a criminal case.

                Black Holes Suck.

                by Pi Li on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:27:40 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I am impressed by your intimate knowledge (24+ / 0-)

                  of the law. I am grateful that you feel compelled to share your knowledge with us. Really.
                  Tell me, if I am being robbed (or raped) - let's say - and I fight back and at some point I put the fear of God in my attacker, does he have the right to kill me?
                  Because it seems to me that by your logic everybody and his momma can claim self defense.
                  Btw, Zimmerman's dad may not have been a judge but I am sure he knows a little more about how the legal system works than the ordinary lay person.
                  This "fear for my life" came after the fact.

                  Maya Angelou: "Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can't be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest."

                  by JoanMar on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:37:17 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Good question (7+ / 0-)
                    Tell me, if I am being robbed (or raped) - let's say - and I fight back and at some point I put the fear of God in my attacker, does he have the right to kill me?
                    Because it seems to me that by your logic everybody and his momma can claim self defense.
                    First, let me say it's not "my logic", it's the law.

                    But let's take your scenario. Say someone attempts to rape or rob you. They grab you, attempt to restrain you, pull a knife, whatever. The are in the act of commiting a felony, and a violent felony at that. You respond with force...let's say you pull a gun or a knife, because you're in fear of death or great bodily harm (and that includes rape).

                    You assailant has lost the right of self-defence because he he initiated the attack. And by attack I mean he physically battered you, or grabbed you, or brandished a weapon of his own, etc.

                    Now, as an aside, he can in fact regain the right to self-defence, if he attempts to remove himself from the situation he caused and you continue.  So in your rape scenario, if he attempts to rape you, you pull out a gun, and then he tries to run away and you chase him with the gun and try to shoot him...then in some jurisdictions, under a scenario like that he may regain his right to self defence.

                    Black Holes Suck.

                    by Pi Li on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:49:46 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  In Florida, (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      JoanMar, amsterdam

                      the standard is reasonable fear of serious bodily injury or death.  I think under the circumstances, Trayvon could well have thought he was endangered by Zimmerman following him and yelling, even after Martin apparently tried to hide.

                      And he'd have been right.  

                      Put another way, for the reasons you specify, Zimmerman can't claim the right to use self-defense, because even throwing a first punch by Martin would be self-defense on his part.   Black kid in white neighborhood or not, he had a hell of a lot more of a right to be where he was than Zimmerman, which means Zimmerman had no right to demand any kind of information, not in the manner in which he demanded it.  The line between "who are you and where are you going" and "get the fuck out or else" breaks down at the margin.  Zimmerman's job was done when the dispatcher told him he could stay in the car.

                      Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

                      by Loge on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 03:27:47 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Hmmmm (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        VClib, andalusi

                        Well, I was just explaining self-defence law, generally, in answering a question with a hypothetical, not applying it to the facts in the Zimmerman case.

                        Having said that, I'm not sure I agree with your legal analysis.

                        Simply following someone, and even questioning them, even in the dark (around 7 PM) doesn't give you lease to strike them. And there's no evidence that Zimmerman was "yelling" at Martin, and even if he was, that alone wouldn't allow Martin to strike Zimmerman. If Zimmerman were yelling at Martin, and doing some other overt act to threaten him...take a swing, brandish his weapon, attempt to restrain him...then Martin would certainly been within his rights to repel Zimmerman with appropriate force.

                        Certainly, Martin may have felt threatened, I don't know. But I'm not aware of any statute, or case law, that says merely following someone, and/or questioning them, is a threatening action that would allow you to attack that person.

                        Now, if Martin threw the first punch, and Zimmerman responded with force, and then at some point Martin attempted to retreat, or tried to break off the encounter in way that was apparent to Zimmerman, Zimmerman would lose his right to self-defence, and the shooting would not be justifiable. But that's a question of fact for the jury, again, I wasn't there.

                        And who had more "right" to be in the neighbourhood at that time is largely irrelevant to the legal and factual questions in this case.

                        I do agree that Zimmerman should probably just have stayed in his car.

                        Black Holes Suck.

                        by Pi Li on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 04:51:10 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  The fact he shot Martin (0+ / 0-)

                          established the elements of the prosecution's case.  He has to show self-defense.  His self-defense arguments at the very least cut the other way -- unless he can establish facts sufficient to show Martin unprovokedly attacked him, Zimmerman's notion of a threat, if extended to Martin, would establish Martin's self-defense much better.  Getting out of his car and aggressively following Martin -- such that Martin knew he was being followed -- was itself somewhat hostile, and without justification, so the "ground" on which anyone could stand was Trayvon's.  There's a further higher hurdle for use of lethal force beyond physical force, so the bumps and scrapes on Zimmerman's face wouldn't seem to indicate he felt that level of threat. As such, he belongs in the hoosegow.

                          Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

                          by Loge on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 05:41:39 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Well, this is mostly just wrong (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Dr Swig Mcjigger, VClib
                            The fact he shot Martin established the elements of the prosecution's case
                            That proves one element of 2nd Degree murder, not all of them.
                            He has to show self-defense.
                            He has to establish a prima facie case of self defence, which is an extermely easy standard to meet, and the prosecution has essentially conceeded that the self defence instruction will be given to the jury.

                            And one that happens, in Florida, the state must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the killing was not in self defence.

                            Getting out of his car and aggressively following Martin -- such that Martin knew he was being followed -- was itself somewhat hostile, and without justification
                            You may regard Zimmerman getting out of the car and "aggressively following" (whatever that is) to be "hostile", but it's not under the law that we're talking about. Tort concepts of causation don't apply here.
                            There's a further higher hurdle for use of lethal force beyond physical force, so the bumps and scrapes on Zimmerman's face wouldn't seem to indicate he felt that level of threat.
                            Zimmerman doesn't have to prove that his injuries were consistent with a threat of bodily harm. Indeed, there have been succesfful self defence cases where the defendant had no visible injuries. Zimmerman doesn't have to prove anything. It's the state that must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that Zimmerman was not reasonable in his belief that his life was in danger.
                            As such, he belongs in the hoosegow.
                            Well, in that this is your opinion, and since you're entitled to it, I guess I can't rebut this with facts or law.  :)

                            Black Holes Suck.

                            by Pi Li on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 06:24:42 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I think you can infer the remaining elements (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            amsterdam

                            Of 2nd degree murder from things like proximity, etc.  sorry for simplyfing.

                            Whether he can establish the prima facie case depends on the strength of the circumstantial (or testimonial if he's an idiot) evidenc he offers.  In my view, any reasonable inference from even his version of the facts doesn't get him to self defense.  They'll get the jury instruction to take away an appeal issue.  As for the scrapes, I think he has to show that the self-defense justification shifted under the standard you outlined, based on the fact that the totality of their interaction, including when Z got out of the car, shows him to be the aggressor and Martin to have been justified in thinking  -- and in fact per Jeantel was  -- that Zimmerman posed a threat.   Per that, I explained what I meant by aggressive stalking.  I think this latter point is exactly where it gets racially charged - you can either empathize with how the weight of history must have pressed on Martin in that unfamiliar neighborhood, or not.  Of course some push it too far and think the presence of a black kid in a white subdivision meant that it was reasonable to think it was up to not good.  (Arguing burden of proof is not that.).  To the extent Zimmerman was one of them (and his non-adherence to the dispatcher implies this), Martin would have been furher justified in striking first in self defense, if indeed that's what happened.

                            Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

                            by Loge on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 07:45:27 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Not exactly (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            VClib
                            Of 2nd degree murder from things like proximity, etc.
                            You can never "infer" the elements of a crime. Each must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.  "Proximity" is not one of those elements. These are (bold emphasis mine):
                            The victim is dead;
                            The death was caused by the criminal act of the defendant;
                            There was an unlawful killing of the victim by an act imminently dangerous to another and demonstrating a depraved mind without regard for human life.
                            I didn't know what to make of the rest of your comment, I'm not quite sure what you were getting at. But simply put, in Florida the burden is on the STATE to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, the the killing was not in self defence.

                            Here is the Florida jury instruction for self defence:

                            If in your consideration of the issue of self-defense you have a reasonable doubt on the question of whether the defendant was justified in the use of deadly force, you should find the defendant not guilty.  

                            However, if from the evidence you are convinced that the defendant was not justified in the  use of deadly force, you should find [him] [her] guilty if all the elements of the charge have been proved.

                            Black Holes Suck.

                            by Pi Li on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 08:08:23 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Yes, a jury can (and should) conclude (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            amsterdam

                            Beyond a reasonable doubt all of those initial elements by the fact of shooting someone at close range.

                            That jury instruction is largely derivative of the underlying requirement that the defendant have a reasonable belief he was under threat -- looked at another way, what in that instruction are we supposed to have a reasonable doubt about?   You are being pedantic about the wrong thing.

                            I think if we take seriously the notion that Martin had a right to self defense, or apply a single standard to both men, Zimmerman can't show evidence sufficient to demonstrate such beliefs in imminent serious threat was reasonable, and there's accordingly no basis on which to apply the legal conclusion of justification.  This is why it matters that he was the underlying aggressor (even if he didnt throw the first punch), which means Martin would have had to go above and beyond usual asskicking to shift the opportunity to self defense, which he didnt because his injuries were slight.  Still, no harm giving the jury instruction -- under your theory, it's not much different from an ordinary burden of proof defense on mens rea.  (You just described little more than reasonable doubt about "depraved mind").  If he's acquitted, does it matter why the jury nullifies?

                            Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

                            by Loge on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:56:37 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Once again (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            VClib

                            You're offering your opinion on conclusions of fact (Zimmerman was the "underlying aggressor"...whatever that means), and I'm talking about the law. And you keep talking about the evidence Zimmerman "must show", and for some reason you keep forgetting that it's the state's burden to prove Zimmerman wasn't acting in self defence, and didn't reasonably fear for his life. In addition to proving the elements of second degree murder.

                            You're basically working backwards from assuming facts you think you know, and then applying the law to suit them...i.e. since you know Zimmerman was the aggressor, he had no right to self defence. And you're defining "aggressor" as anything you wish, not something based in the law. Then you conclude that if the jury reaches any other conclusion the one you have, they must be wrong and therefore be jury nullification.

                            So since you're not basing this on anything but your opinion, there's not much point in continuing.

                            Black Holes Suck.

                            by Pi Li on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 05:53:39 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I never claimed it wasn't opinion (0+ / 0-)

                            and I deliberately used the language of prima facie case.  A self defense theory needs an evidentiary basis.  You are treating it like a presumption (all killings should be regarded as justified unless the state shows theyre not).  The point is simple -- any argument Zimmerman or his supporters have this far presented in support of a Self defense affirmative defense better support the contention that Martin was not simply a threat to Zimmerman, but in fact legally justified in so being.  Discussing the law isn't just citing a statute, but what it means and how it fits together.  The whole point is to debate conflicting opinions, which you think is a dirty word. Nevertheless, FL's self defense statutes do distinguish circumstances where the person seeking a self defense justification created the dangerous situation by his own actions from other circumstances, so if you don't know what underlying aggressor entails here, it's not because you're an expert in self defense law.

                            The prosecution could screw up and get an acquittal or mistrial.  That's a possibility.  Probably a strong one.  

                            Maybe consider whether defending Zimmerman to begin with is a good use of time.  I win.

                            Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

                            by Loge on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 06:15:36 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Law student or paralegal? (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            VClib, andalusi

                            Black Holes Suck.

                            by Pi Li on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 06:41:29 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Objection, compound. n/t (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            JoanMar, andalusi

                            Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

                            by Loge on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 07:02:47 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                    •  are Coffeetalk and you twins? (4+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      sukeyna, JoanMar, bluezen, a2nite

                      You use exactly the same arguments.

              •  i saw a commenter in the NYT make this point, (19+ / 0-)

                guy was from Connecticut no less.  Said Martin would be alive if he "followed orders," as if George Zimmerman were any kind of authority figure on any basis other than color of skin, and maybe age.  (Given what Zimmerman made of his life, age is not that impressive relative to a teenager who still had potential.)

                Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

                by Loge on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:59:18 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  By the way (20+ / 0-)

          You missed the part where I said "hunts me down".

          As Zimmerman did.

          He's a liar and a murderer, in my book.

          "We have only the moral ground we actually inhabit, not the moral ground we claim." - It Really Is That Important

          by Diogenes2008 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:53:14 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I saw that (5+ / 0-)

            But "hunt", or even "stalk" is not even something the prosecution is alleging in this case, and they haven't used those words, which is why I didn't comment on your use of them, didn't see the sense of getting into the weeds on that.

            Black Holes Suck.

            by Pi Li on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:10:52 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Their not having (5+ / 0-)

              "used those words" does not mean that is not what happened...had  the roles been reversed and an angry armed black person was following a white kid and ultimately ended up confronting and killing him, those words would be on a constant loop on every channel 24/7... it is the inherent  white privilege that Zimmerman has that makes you give him the benefit of the doubt and assumes that there might have been a good reason for him to shoot Trayvon Martin that night... but I don't see you taking up the same cause had it been the other way around...

              Fear doesn't just breed incomprehension. It also breeds a spiteful, resentful hate of anyone and everyone who is in any way different from you.

              by awesumtenor on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:59:57 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  awesumtenor - Pi Li didn't address them (4+ / 0-)

                because they have no legal bearing on this criminal case, as noted by the fact that the prosecution hasn't mentioned them.

                "let's talk about that"

                by VClib on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:31:12 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  The prosecution's not having (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  vcmvo2, a2nite

                  used the terms to date is no indication of the nature of Zimmerman's offense... from his being armed to his 911 call to his unwillingness to wait for the police speaks to his intent... to hunt... and stalk... and ultimately kill... Trayvon Martin....and to play the victim after the fact... and it is that attempt to be painted as the victim that has more to do with the lack of any more incendiary definitions from the prosecution to date than any assumption that his actions did not constitute either hunting or stalking.

                  Fear doesn't just breed incomprehension. It also breeds a spiteful, resentful hate of anyone and everyone who is in any way different from you.

                  by awesumtenor on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:12:45 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

  •  A license to kill, or at least, to fight (39+ / 0-)

    "...a young person shot dead by a wannabe cop who imagined himself as possessing a license to kill."

    By virtue of possessing a gun, Zimmerman knew he could win a fight against anyone.  He may have well understood his gun was not a license to kill, but he certainly understood his gun was a license to at least get in a confrontation with another.

    And if it came to a fight, so much the better.  Zimmerman knew he was equiped for a fight.  Trayvon Martin was not.

    So armed, Zimmerman had no reason to hold back.  He could confront Martin, challenge him, behave aggressively, even goad Martin into fighting.  With his gun, Zimmerman knew he would win.

    We know Martin was anxious to avoid a confrontation: he tried to hide from Zimmerman.  

    We know Zimmerman was anxious to have a confrontation.  And because he had a gun, we know why Zimmerman wanted that confrontation.  

    "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

    by Hugh Jim Bissell on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:18:17 AM PDT

  •  Trayvon rightfully felt threatened (23+ / 0-)

    that night, and because we live in the 21st century, not the 1950's, he called Z a creepy ass cracker, possibly hoping it would intimidate his stalker enough that Z would leave him alone. Zimmerman had the choice to walk away from a situation he started, and he chose to kill someone. That is the bottom line for me. Thanks for the diary.

    Racial hostility, homophobia and misogyny are braided together like strands of the same rope. When we fight one, we fight them all. - Charles M. Blow

    by blueoregon on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:19:34 AM PDT

  •  Rachel Jeantel's testimony falls apart (0+ / 0-)

    "Have you come here for forgiveness? Have you come to raise the dead? Have you come here to play Jesus, to the lepers in your head?" ~ U2 "One"

    by WereBear Walker on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:22:27 AM PDT

    •  I'm Not Sure This is Much of a Revelation (35+ / 0-)

      She was on the phone at the time.  How could she possibly know who threw the first punch?  There were only two people who knew that, and one of them killed the other one.

      Too Folk For You. - Schmidting in the Punch Bowl - verb - Committing an unexpected and underhanded political act intended to "spoil the party."

      by TooFolkGR on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:17:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Aha, obstruction of justice! (6+ / 0-)

        I think the fact Martin was on the phone at all suggests his mind wasn't in fighting.  And if Martin did throw the first punch, it was still probably self-defense.

        Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

        by Loge on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:01:33 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  T.M. had a phone in one hand & drink in the other? (0+ / 0-)

          Of course Zimmerman was making numerous calls to police while T.M. was sweet talking his girlfriend...

          Black teenager talking to his sweetie on his phone and walking easy down the street carrying his snacks, and then trying to steer away from creepy old light skinned cracker dude who seemed to be following him. Hard to see this posing a visible & credible threat, even to a paranoid cranky old cracker...something set Mr. Z. off irrationally as he observed T.M..

          Perhaps as Zimmerman serveiled and tracked the increasingly elusive and suspicious T.M. he realized T.M. was talking to his honey. What is the possibility Z was more than a bit jealous he didn't have his own real honey, and possibly tapping into an inner rage that he couldn't? Add that to Z being really, really itching to defend his turf (aka 'stand your ground') and trigger a violent policing law & order response to T.M. (if the cops won't come I'll take 'all necessary action'.) Z became the last white hope standing his ground in this neighborhood, a hero for rapid response 'justice', against this threatening interloping young virile black male who failed to acknowledge & fear him, defer to him, (aka kept sweet talking his girlfriend on the phone) and give Mr. Z. his proper due respect as the real alpha-male in this neighborhood.

          Having known a number of racists, my guess would be that Zimmerman's views wold hold that white/light skinned male (armed and 'authorized') is top of the human pyramid, next is white female, then other races (lower in rank as darker) with females preferred (and you may hear that chuckling purient remark about hey, they're still good (to a white male) for 'somethin'), and then near the bottom of the 'pecking order' would be black women and finally the surplus of black men whom he likely deemed useless at best, a cause of sinful desires in white women, and destined to be felons, and a reason his taxes are 'high' and government 'overreaching' trying to equalize what God & Nature intended as unequal. Liberal Northern whites might fit in there somewhere just under those weak deluded white women secretly lusting for the love of black males.

          When life gives you wingnuts, make wingnut butter!

          by antirove on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:07:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Your header is misleading. (20+ / 0-)

      She acknowledged in her testimony that she didn't know who threw the punch.  How does this make her testimony "fall apart" or contradict what she said in any way?

    •  That wasn't the point of her testimony (8+ / 0-)

      She had no way of knowing who threw the first punch.  She was on the phone.

      The point of her testimony is that Trayvon was intimidated by Zimmerman, tried to get away, and was freaked out when Zimmerman continued to follow him.

      The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

      by catwho on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:37:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Read the whole article, she admits perjury. n/t (0+ / 0-)

        "Have you come here for forgiveness? Have you come to raise the dead? Have you come here to play Jesus, to the lepers in your head?" ~ U2 "One"

        by WereBear Walker on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:48:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I Read the whole article and saw her testimony. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          worldlotus, Sychotic1, catwho

          She admitted lying to Trayvon's mother about why she didn't go to the funeral.  She never said she lied about who threw the first punch.  She assumed because of everything else she heard that GZ threw the first punch but agreed that she could not KNOW this for sure as she couldn't SEE it through the telephone.

          As for her taped statement, from the article...

          what she said on the tape was not 100 percent clear. After the tape played Jeantel insisted that she said she could hear Martin, but that prosecutor de la Rionda did not understand her.

          This is consistent with the difficulties the prosecutor and court stenographer have had understanding her during the trial.

          - "Justice is what love looks like in public." -Cornel West -

          by FreeWoman19 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 02:08:33 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Some folks don't consider "cracker" a slur (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    42Cliffsideb, Sychotic1

    "If you're in trouble, or hurt or need - go to the poor people. They're the only ones that'll help - the only ones." John Steinbeck

    by BluejayRN on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:23:59 AM PDT

    •  We never did, and I grew up in Florida (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BluejayRN, Sychotic1

      We called each other crackers, it was a joke. It was white people that had been born in Florida, which was rare when I was growing up.

      Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

      by splashy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:09:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  That's soft he's worst than that (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, cotterperson, Matt Z
  •  Republished to 'Trial Watch' nt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    vcmvo2

    nosotros no somos estúpidos

    by a2nite on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:41:24 AM PDT

  •   Do blacks have a right to self defense (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Loge, splashy, Old Sailor, catwho, sethtriggs, HCKAD

    Any Blackman would  be creep out too ,if a strange man was following him,Zimmerman who  is a confess child molester,he had no right too confront Trayvon,Zimmerman had no lawful authority   under Florida law,too impede Trayvon on that night  

  •  Cracker doesn't bother me. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TooFolkGR

    But I wonder why it was so important for Bernie De La Rionda to make sure the jury heard "creepy ass cracka" at least five times. It seemed like having W8 repeat it is a central part of the State's case. Maybe we were supposed to focus on the creepy party. Or perhaps it was to convince the jury that the native American/Hispanic-looking defendant is in fact a white man. Shit, Trayvon could have been talking about someone else since Zimmerman does not remotely look like someone I would identify as a cracker.

    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

    by HairyTrueMan on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:00:56 AM PDT

    •  If they are native Floridians, my guess is they (0+ / 0-)

      have heard it before.

      "I watch Fox News for my comedy, and Comedy Central for my news." - Facebook Group

      by Sychotic1 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 06:42:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm guessing it had less to do with (0+ / 0-)

      race and more to do with the fact that Trayvon himself felt threatened.  

      My hope is that the jury is focusing more on the fact that he knew someone was specifically following him and that he wasn't caught unaware.

      If he was caught unaware and a fight ensued then Zimmerman's claim of self defense was warranted.  If the jury believes that the fight was a direct result of Zimmerman's actions and that he didn't do everything he could to prevent the situation, it might be more difficult for them to say he acted in full self defense.  

      __

      Something I noticed in the trial yesterday.  Zimmerman follows Trayvon, calls the police and continues to follow him but when he is confronted by Trayvon he acts like nothing was going on rather than just stating he was from the neighborhood watch.  

      Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

      by mim5677 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 07:14:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  "Cracker" is nowhere in the same league (12+ / 0-)

    as the "N" word.

    But Zimmerman isn't white either.

  •  I'm so freaking white (18+ / 0-)

    And I can say with some authority that, no, if someone called me a "cracker" or a "honky" that it wouldn't really hurt. Because there is absolutely no history whatsoever of black people using a position of power to effect laws which oppressed white people.  

    And, honestly, my husband, also white, and I use the term jokingly sometimes when we're alone.

    And Zimmerman sure as hell is a creepy ass cracker. What kind of dude who isn't creepy stalks young strangers like that?

    Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

    by moviemeister76 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:05:00 AM PDT

  •  So can another African-American be a cracker? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catesby

    Zimmerman is Latino.

    I was gonna listen to that, but then, um, I just carried on living my life. - Aldous Snow

    by GoGoGoEverton on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:09:42 AM PDT

  •  Is *THAT* Where the Word Comes From? (9+ / 0-)
    "Cracker” is evocative of the sound of the whip, wielded by a white overseer or slave owner
    I had never heard that before.

    Too Folk For You. - Schmidting in the Punch Bowl - verb - Committing an unexpected and underhanded political act intended to "spoil the party."

    by TooFolkGR on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:14:59 AM PDT

    •  I hadn't either, and I was raised in Florida (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sychotic1

      We always thought it meant a white person that was born in Florida, which was rare when I was growing up.

      Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

      by splashy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:12:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It may not be equal to "nigger" (3+ / 0-)

    but it is to...
    spear chucker
    jungle bunny
    porch monkey
    monkey
    and whatever slur someone may want to use to describe someone of another color.  

    I'd bet my paycheck that Trayvon wasn't attending a school that delved too deep in to racial history in America.

    I assume, what he knows is that cracker means white and not in a good way.  

    Zimmerman sounds creepy to me but he's no cracker.

    Not that I expect a lot but this is bottom of the barrell reasoning here.  

    Furthermore you don't know jack shit about why Trayvon called him a cracker, there is no way you can know.  You should admit as much when making claims like this.  

    Saying "I believe" or "I assume" helps.

    Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

    by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:20:02 AM PDT

    •  It is not equal to any of those terms (22+ / 0-)

      because it does not have the weight of systemic racism behind it.

      •  Have you ever had your skull fractured (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mkor7, UbuRoi, HairyTrueMan, Be Skeptical

        with a bat by someone calling you white trash, white boy, or ofay?

        If not, you really haven't got shit to say on the subject that doesn't amount to pseudoacademic public masturbation.
         

        Mr. Universe is a known degenerate Robotophile, and his sources include former Browncoat Traitors. What is their agenda in leaking top secret information about the Reavers and endangering us all?

        by JesseCW on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:33:05 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I was sucker punched by a local guy outside a bar (5+ / 0-)

          near Ala Moana at 4AM or so while living in Hawaii. I was underage at a Korean bar.

          "Haole! Get off my Island!" Boom...

          It was a little local guy about 45-50 years old. I spent a few minutes trying to talk him down and then wound up kicking his ass pretty good.

          I'm not at all a fighter, but I was big, fast, and strong at the time. I think the guy wanted to get a beat down...

          I feel your comment here, Jesse.

          Living in Hawaii for 5 years was a beautiful thing, nothing like learning what it is like to be an extreme minority and getting a look at US geopolitics from a foreign land.

          Democracy - 1 person 1 vote. Free Markets - More dollars more power.

          by k9disc on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:45:20 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Race-based attacks or assaults (12+ / 0-)

          are not the same thing as systemic racism.

          You were (or the victim you describe was; I'm not clear on whether you're describing your own experiences or someone else's) assaulted by someone who hated you because of your respective skin colors.  This is a horrible thing.

          But were you assaulted by someone who knew that because of your respective skin colors, you would almost certainly be blamed for the altercation instead of him, and his assault would not be taken seriously by law enforcement?  Or that in the unlikely event he was actually charged with the crime, he would face policemen who looked like him, a jury of people who looked like him, and a judge who looked like him -- all of whom would look at you and automatically consider you the criminal type because of your skin color?

          Or, to revise this slightly, by someone who knew this would have been the case thirty years ago and is furious that it isn't still the case?

          •  And seeing as Zimmerman is not white (0+ / 0-)

            he could not have participated in systemic racism either.

            Anyone I know who would see he walking down the street in broad daylight would peg him as having native American heritage.

            He looks nothing like the law enforcement system where he lived.

            Unless the "brown" came from Germany lol.

            •  One could make the argument (0+ / 0-)

              that Zimmerman is and has been benefiting from a racist system that doesn't like his kind much but dislikes Martin's kind a lot more.

              However, the point at hand is whether "cracker" or any other slur for the privileged demographic can carry the same weight as a slur for any underprivileged demographic, and the fact is that it doesn't and can't.

        •  Would it matter what words they used? A skull (5+ / 0-)

          fracture is the offense.   So, you point is that you have a personal association with pain inflicted on you and "white trash?"  Sorry that happened to you, but it is a false equivalence.

        •  None of those terms are cracker (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          earicicle

          So why are you conflating them?

          They mean entirely different things.

          Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

          by splashy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:14:35 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Pretty and cute don't mean the same thing (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Be Skeptical

            either, but the message is clear.

            A porch monkey doesn't mean the same thing as a spear chucker but the message is the same.

            That message is...
            Your presence is giving me a negative feeling and some of it has to do with your color.

            Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

            by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:20:39 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  99% of it is because you are stalking me. If a (0+ / 0-)

              black man had been stalking him  he would have said "creepy ass nigga". In fact, he did use the term "nigga" to refer to Zimmerman at one point.

              - "Justice is what love looks like in public." -Cornel West -

              by FreeWoman19 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 02:28:29 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Well that's not okay either (0+ / 0-)

                I get the situational aspect of it but we aren't in that situation.  We are having an intellectual debate over whether Zimmerman is in fact a creepy ass cracker and if it is okay to think of white people as such because we are still hurt by prejudice and bigotry.  

                Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

                by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 07:42:01 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Just to add (0+ / 0-)

                of course in this case Trayvon was disturbed by someone following him period.  I guess it depends on all the lessons that can come out of this.  

                People are going to choose to get out of it what they want.  In the end if all people get is that there is still racism and prejudice in America, then this was truly a wasted moment.  

                I certainly don't need this trial to prove that in any way shape or form.  So like I said if that is all people want to get out of it, good luck, you will need it.  

                Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

                by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:12:00 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  need some lube? (0+ / 0-)
          pseudoacademic public masturbation

          -You want to change the system, run for office.

          by Deep Texan on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:37:49 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  White trash... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FreeWoman19

          ... is generally used by whites as well as blacks to refer to other whites who are acting in a stereotypically poor or low class manner.  It is derogatory, and its usage stems back to sharecropper days much like the N word.  It's conflated today with "trailor park trash" although the latter can be applied regardless of race and is purely a class insult.

          Cracker, on the other hand, is less of a class based insult and much more of a statement of racial relationships.  No white person that I know has ever calls another white person cracker.  However, the black kids I grew up with had no qualms about referring to whites as crackers, even in the presence of other whites.  It rolls off the tongue better than "white person."  However, as a generality, it was used to refer to a white who was making things difficult for the black person, or people, in discussion.  

          So the old guy who yelled at the group of us (white and black) to get off his property was an "old cracker" from the black kids, and "old asshole" to the white kids.

          The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

          by catwho on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:45:19 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  yes it is. (0+ / 0-)

        Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

        by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:57:23 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  It is not equal to those terms (0+ / 0-)

        but it also completely inaccurate.

        How would you have felt if Martin had accurately assessed Zimmerman's race and called him a spic or a wetback?

        •  The same way I feel about him (0+ / 0-)

          calling him a cracker or a nigga.  Not good.  My race has little to do with how I feel about it as I am both white and black.  What I do have a sense of is right and wrong and whether the .0025% of the population that could be considered Zimmerman supporters, whether they feel he's a victim of reverse racism or not makes no difference because they are such a small and insignificant percentage of the population.  

          Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

          by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 08:42:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I think you're sadly underestimating (0+ / 0-)

            how much support Zimmerman actually has.

            Unless by "the population" you mean the population of DKos?

            •  I don't think so. (0+ / 0-)

              I think the Dkos population is greatly overestimating the number of people that would consider themselves Zimmerman supporters or at least the kind that is being referenced in the diary.

              To assume that all people that think Zimmerman acted in self defense also think that he is a victim of reverse racism or in someway harbor racist ideas towards black people is illogical.  

              Thinking that he is innocent doesn't make one a supporter nor does it assign any characteristics to who they are as a person.  

              It's convenient to lump them all in to one group for the purposes of a diary but it's just not reality.

              I mean the general population.  

              Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

              by mim5677 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 09:56:11 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I'm not sure how one can reasonably say (0+ / 0-)

                that thinking he's innocent doesn't make one a supporter.  Since the fact that he killed Martin is not a matter under dispute, if you think he shouldn't be found guilty of murder, you support his actions in killing Martin.

                I am also heavily dubious of anyone who believes the killing was in self-defense but claims that their belief has nothing to do with Martin's race.  (Zimmerman's race I consider irrelevant; I agree with you regarding the "reverse racism" point.  The only one I'm seeing trying to work that angle is the lawyer himself.)

                •  You being skeptical (0+ / 0-)

                  doesn't make you right.

                  When we put people who merely have an opinion about the case, into the same group of people who...
                  Paraphrasing "think that black folk are obligated to obey white authority" we are making a leap that is not required unless to make some sort of point.  

                  We can't assume that every person that has a thought about the case thinks about it on the same level that we do.  Many people just have an opinion that does not involve the political slant that is so common in places like this or places like this that have conservative views.  

                  It is a greater challenge to prove that a large group of people all think alike than it is to simply recognize that there has to be a wide variety of opinions within a group.

                  Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

                  by mim5677 on Wed Jul 03, 2013 at 09:13:44 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I definitely agree (0+ / 0-)

                    that most people's opinions do not involve a political slant.

                    That doesn't mean racism isn't involved, though.  It's just less likely to be conscious racism.

                    And ... I'm not sure how I am meant to ascribe a wide variety of opinions on a subject to a group of people who are being grouped by sharing an opinion on that subject.

        •  Probably quite differently. (0+ / 0-)

          Here's a counter-question: what if he had inaccurately assessed Zimmerman's race in a different direction, and called him a kike or a chink?  Unlikely, I grant you, but what would that have meant?

    •  I think I have a clue (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      white blitz, Sychotic1

      Having been raised in Florida.

      It's a common term for those that are white that are born there.

      Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

      by splashy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:13:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  in the rest of the south (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Be Skeptical, Charles Hall

        that is not what it means. The word has a larger context than Florida. Yes, the trial is taking place in Florida, so I suppose that's relevant, but we're talking about a black teenager using the word. Is that the definition commonly assumed by black people in Florida? Or do Florida black people tend to use it the way it's used elsewhere?

    •  Not in Florida, he wasn't (0+ / 0-)

      The Home of No Child Left Education? Yeah, you'd definitely win that bet...

      I'd bet my paycheck that Trayvon wasn't attending a school that delved too deep in to racial history in America.
    •  I believe and assume Trayvon used the term as (5+ / 0-)

      you say, "not in a good way" to describe a person who he believed was following him with malicious intent BECAUSE HE WAS BLACK.

      In my experience as a black person, living in Florida but born and raised in Chicago, who doesn't use the word "cracker" but has heard it used, a CRACKER is white person who harbors ill will toward you because you are black.

      As another poster said, the term is a way to express frustration and fear that this person may do you harm simply because they don't like the color of your skin. This is something that black people live with 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year at varying degrees.  In Chicago, growing up we just said "white" and the tone with which it was said indicated whether if was positive or negative.  "Honky" was very rare.

      - "Justice is what love looks like in public." -Cornel West -

      by FreeWoman19 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 02:25:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for elucidating what cracker means (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, vcmvo2

    The context in which the late Trayvon used the word now makes sense.
    I hope the prosecution can call in a historical linguist to put the word in perspective

  •  White Like Me (13+ / 0-)

    I can tell you that growing up white and Christian in America, I NEVER, EVER had any sense other than "belonging" to the American tribe.   I never had a "second identity" or separate sense of myself growing out of being dark skinned, or Jewish, or disabled, or gay, and I never had to put up with the bullshit or worry that a black, or Jew, or other "outsider" had to put up with.

    I never grew up looking over my shoulder.  Trayvon did.

    So Zimmerman gets called a cracker?  BFD.

    •  You grew up white, middle class, and in a (3+ / 0-)

      heavily white community.

      I don't even have to ask, based on your description of "never having to look over your shoulder".

      It's great to take the step of recognizing some of your privilege, but it can actually be counterproductive if you make a conscious decision to recognize only some of it.

      Mr. Universe is a known degenerate Robotophile, and his sources include former Browncoat Traitors. What is their agenda in leaking top secret information about the Reavers and endangering us all?

      by JesseCW on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:31:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Zimmerman grew up (0+ / 0-)

      being a native American from an Hispanic background in a white world.

      Have we decided all "brown" native American people are now white, with all the same privileges?

  •  What is so galling, is the cops believed him, (30+ / 0-)

    Zimmerman, and let him GO HOME that very night. Yep, dead black kid on the sidewalk, self defense, yeah, yeah, here's your DO NOT GO TO JAIL card. It took public outcry at this travesty to get to a trial.
    Zimmerman is looking quite smug during his trial. One can almost detect a smile, like he's thinking, "I'm getting away with it."
    I thought Jentaeal showed remarkable restraint during her testimony.

    "Let's stay together"--Rev. Al Green and President Obama

    by collardgreens on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:32:28 AM PDT

  •  "Cracker" was slang for poor white farmer... (4+ / 0-)

    In central Florida. They even have a "Florida Cracker Trail".

    •  To us, it was a white that had been born there (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      IreGyre, Sychotic1

      Which was rare when I was young.

      But, the farmer thing sounds about right.

      Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

      by splashy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:16:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  There is no such thing as "reverse racism" against (22+ / 0-)

    white people, as your compelling diary so clearly explains. There is no history of systematic degradation of white people in this country and to equate "cracker" with the horrible "N word" is despicable.
    It seems so plain to me. George Zimmerman wanted to play cop with his gun. A young man is dead because of this. Trayvon was doing NOTHING wrong. He just existed, to Zimmerman and his ilk, and that was excuse enough to hunt him down like an animal because Georgie-Porgie thought he looked suspicious.

    "Let's stay together"--Rev. Al Green and President Obama

    by collardgreens on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:43:53 AM PDT

  •  From what I remember "cracker" refers to the food (3+ / 0-)

    "soda crackers" which were a preferred and cheap food, often the only food these bottom of the food chain white folks ate.  Black folks noted the association of color (white) of the crackers and the ignorant white folks that lived in the South.  A "red necked cracker" was likely a farmer with white skin who got sunburned as he worked the fields.  

    IMO calling someone by a term that describes them by their skin color is wrong.  Period.  I don't think it matters who does the calling.  All the rest of it is just like counting how many angels can fit on the head of a pin.  

  •  Thanks. n/t (8+ / 0-)

    Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

    by Meteor Blades on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:49:38 AM PDT

  •  I'm with you (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, FreeWoman19

    Having grown up around these "crackers" in my family, it is obvious to me that this was the reality Trayvon was dealing with. He was saying truth.

    I can't imagine not being afraid with a white guy following me when I was alone, especially as a teenager. Who wouldn't?

    In fact, if Trayvon did attack Zimmerman, he was defending himself. It's like people think that Travon should have just let Zimmerman do whatever he wanted with him, with no idea what he wanted.

    Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

    by splashy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:51:00 AM PDT

  •  Well, I wouldn't call Zimmerman a... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    vcmvo2

    saltine.

    No, he's creepy and the other thing, too.

    Anyone who goes around looking for trouble with a loaded gun.

    That's a "C.C." Eh? ;o)

    Meh. NRA. Meh. Libertarians.

    Ugh. --UB.

    "Daddy, every time a bell rings, a Randian Libertaria­n picks up his Pan Am tickets for the Libertaria­n Paradise of West Dakota!"

    by unclebucky on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:52:39 AM PDT

  •  I'm so glad someone is talking about this here. (22+ / 0-)

    Thanks.

    And you've hit all the right points.

    Apparently, Zimmerman was allowed to defend himself, but Martin was not.

    And THAT is all you need to know about the so-called "death of racism" in this country.


    I'm not an athiest. How can you not believe in something that doesn't exist? That's way too convoluted for me. - A. Whitney Brown

    by AlyoshaKaramazov on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:52:47 AM PDT

  •  So you're proud that you know reverse racism isn't (0+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    Hidden by:
    vcmvo2

    real...

    Congratu-fucking-lations.

    What about racial prejudice?
    What about racial bigotry?

    These two alone in modern America have greater impact than systematic racism.  

    This case is far more about bigotry and prejudice than it is racism...but hey, what's a discussion about race without distraction.

    Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

    by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:02:39 AM PDT

    •  How can one conclude that prejudice and bigotry (12+ / 0-)

      have a greater impact than systemic racism??  Look at the disparate wealth accumulation between whites and others which is a direct result of federal policies (redlining for FHA loans).  What about segregated schools up until the last generation?  What about labor laws, immigration laws and marriage prohibitions that gave disproportionate privilege and property to so-called whites?  Sheesh.
      I'll take prejudice and bigotry any day in exchange for a justice system that treats all equally and voting rights that treat all equally.  I can deal with bigots if the STATE protected all our rights.

      •  agreed (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Diogenes2008, vcmvo2, Dretutz

        -You want to change the system, run for office.

        by Deep Texan on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:40:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  The government does a good (0+ / 0-)

        job of protecting peoples rights.

        I would challenge someone to tell me how systemic racism has a larger impact on today's society than bigotry or racial prejudice exercised by individuals.

        I don't think you did it.  I'm talking about the world we live in today.

        Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

        by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 07:26:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Really? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dretutz, Batya the Toon

          You think the government is good at protecting the right of the people?

          What about Stop & Frisk? What about the VRA just getting gutted? What about police brutality and murder which always disproportionately affects folks of color not to mention transgendered folks of any color?

          What bout the fact that red lining residential areas is still going on, affecting where folks of color can even buy a house? What about local laws which affect where folks of color can even send their children in some states? What about the fact that children of color are punished way, way more than white kids and far, far more severely in all 50 states in this country?
          What about the fact that way, way more folks of color are in prison, especially for drug possession than white people?

          What about the fact that folks of color have far less money and property than whites due to historic oppression, and yet our government is structured to pretty much maintain that lopsided difference?

          What about the studies which have shown that white people tend to be instinctually scared of black people, and often don't even know it, which is undoubtedly affecting why black children receive harsher punishments than white kids in schools? It's difficult to feel sympathy if you don't trust someone, and white people are trained from the time we are infants to not trust black people, through movies, video games, television, books and the news.

          Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

          by moviemeister76 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 04:44:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Those are a lot of good questions....here you go. (0+ / 0-)

            Stop and Frisk - The Fed has stepped in to review the constitutionality of the law and a class action has been certified.  The city council (citizens) passed the law and because of the mess the government is doing what it does.

            VRA - It was not gutted, the supreme court gave congress a mandate to update the law.  One section was tossed out and that's it.

            Police brutality - Often results in civil actions taken against the city.  Money gets paid out all the time.  Do you really think no cops are in prison.

            Redlining - Lawsuits against the practice are ongoing.

            The stuff about kids is a little random and generic but I can assure you where civil rights are violated the government protects those rights.

            Federal drug laws are what they are.  What rights would you say are being violated in this case?  Keep in mind I spend more time in prisons than probably 98% of the country.  If you sell lots of drugs you do fed time period.

            Poverty - the structure of the government you say...What rights are we talking about? Set up to maintain that structure, what structures are you talking about?  I only ask because a lot of practices like not allowing people of a certain color to do certain things aren't on the books anymore.  I'd be happy to address it but you are talking about a large thing in a general way.

            You are telling me that white people are trained to be scared of black people and that's why kids get harsher punishments than white kids.  What the fuck is the government supposed to do about prejudice and bigotry?  I mean seriously.

            Now I have a couple of questions...
            roe v wade?
            DOMA?
            Same sex marriages?
            Women in combat?
            Women voting?
            Black people voting?
            Black people not being slaves?
            You using the internet?
            You protesting the government?
            You becoming a part of the government?
            Black kids going to school with white kids?
            Black kids going to college?
            Affirmative action?
            The entire bill of rights?

            These are rhetorical of course as you and I both know the government although imperfect actually does an excellent job of protecting the rights of individuals.

            Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

            by mim5677 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 06:24:26 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

              •  Come on Chauncey (0+ / 0-)

                All the rights that I mentioned and any others that are upheld are upheld.  

                Most of the rights violations that happen in this counrty today are done by private citizens and the first thing anyone does is file a lawsuit.  

                I get it if people don't think the government is good at protecting peoples rights but the evidence says otherwise.

                The freedom to partake in society is no small thing and if the standard is utopia, then your argument is not with me.  

                Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

                by mim5677 on Wed Jul 03, 2013 at 09:07:41 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  The residual sediment of 300+ years of government (0+ / 0-)

          sponsored racism and discrimination lives on.

    •  Systemic racism (5+ / 0-)

      includes racial prejudice and racial bigotry.

      So ... I'm not sure how you can say that the latter have greater impact than the former?

      •  But those two (0+ / 0-)

        don't always include racism.  

        Prejudice and bigotry don't require a race at their start or finish.  

        If you look at civil rights from the 70's on most of the major issues are related to issues other than race.  

        What do you call a person that won't hire someone because they are disabled?  Not a racist

        a woman? Not a racist

        Homosexual? Not a racist

        Muslim?  Not a racist

        What do you call someone who won't hire an islamic lesbian double amputee because they are all three?  Not a racist

        Prejudice and Bigotry are far more flexible and far reaching than systemic racism.  They may not have the hard hitting impact that slavery and denying the right to vote may have but they don't have to.  

        Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

        by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 07:39:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Uh, excuse me (0+ / 0-)

          but you did say racial prejudice and racial bigotry.

          What about racial prejudice?
          What about racial bigotry?

          These two alone in modern America have greater impact than systematic racism.  

          If what you meant was non-race-related prejudice and bigotry, then ... I'm not sure how anyone reading your comment was supposed to figure that out.
    •  What the heck is your beef? (5+ / 0-)

      The diarist is talking in terms of a murder trial. A black teenager is dead and you are splitting hairs about what?

      Your other comments are similarly weird, this one went too far imo. DBAD and stop hijacking what the diarist is really talking about. hr

      They (the GOP) don't believe in evolution because it has passed them by. ~ Laurence Lewis

      by vcmvo2 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:30:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sorry you feel that way. (0+ / 0-)

        I think prejudice and bigotry have a far greater impact on modern society than racism.

        Where racism can and usually is only aimed at one group the other two can affect a broad area, that can mix in race, gender, ethnicity, economics, physical stature all in one without limits.    

        It's wasn't meant to hijack a thread but a lot of posts were discussing reverse racism as being "not real" and it seemed to be a final point making it okay to refer to Zimmerman as a "creepy cracker' which it is not.

        I don't feel any different about what I said, just thought some clarification was needed.

        Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

        by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 07:31:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You clarified your point many times (0+ / 0-)

          that's where it became a hijack

          They (the GOP) don't believe in evolution because it has passed them by. ~ Laurence Lewis

          by vcmvo2 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 12:55:18 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  There are about (0+ / 0-)

            550 comments in this thread many of them unrelated sparking far longer chains than anything I said.  I get your point, I'm just saying.

            Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

            by mim5677 on Wed Jul 03, 2013 at 09:03:16 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Erm, what? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      earicicle

      This diarist has posted quite a bit here. It's not like he suddenly realized that reverse racism isn't real. However, there sure are a ton of folks here at DKos who genuinely believe it is. I figure the more diaries we have pointing out why that's not true, the better chance we have of it sinking in for a few folks.

      Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

      by moviemeister76 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 02:16:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's unrealistic (0+ / 0-)

        but I get it.  This particular statement wasn't too the diarist but to the other people making this finalized type statement about reverse racism which is irrelevant.  

        Prejudice and bigotry are the real problems and aren't limited by race or definition in who they are exercised by.

        Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

        by mim5677 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 07:33:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The word used is meaningless. (11+ / 0-)

    To put it in a cynical way: everyone has the right to hate anyone for whatever reason they like, so long as they do not act on it in an illegal manner.

    If a white kid yelled "N***" at the top of his lungs, no one has the right to chase, shoot & kill him.

    TMs statement is utterly irrelevant. If he wrote a book called "I hate Whitey & why I am a racist" it would be irrelevant.

    It is beyond argument that GZ chased, shot & killed a kid walking home. He created a life & death situation. That is all that is relevant in this case.

    Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

    by FrankRose on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:04:28 AM PDT

  •  So it must be white priviledge but I don't look (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sychotic1

    at the slurs quite the same. Oh they still hurt once in a while but, it's not the same.

    Here on Oahu a snotty skate board shop put out a snotty tee shirt called Anti-Haole. Haole is the Hawaiian cracker. The Anti-Haole tee shirt was a joke because there is this Haole/cracker that is very dear to the skate boarders who makes a line of popular products called Anti-Hero. So he came here and was joking around with some boarders. He said he was the anti-haole, it got put in print in a magazine. Then it was thought to be so funny that a tee shirt was printed. Well that made the news.

    Well that is where I put in my 2cents.

    So I went to their web site and told them a thing or two. First of all Anit-hero is a bad boy. Anti-Haole would be a good boy. Anti-Aloha would be a real bad boy. And (I was just getting warmed up) I am Auntie Haole, I said (again a long subtext - all senoras are aunties in HI) and they stole my name. Besides Haole is aloha spelled backwards. It's not, but I enjoy watching their faces as they figure this out. I am a joker to the core.

    So that is white privilege talking here wouldn't you say. I did hear a comedian say he was 12 years old before he knew cracker was also a delicious snack.

    Now I probably should steer clear of skateboarders for the time being. But I don't get out much so I'm thinking I should be fine.

  •  Any language (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Be Skeptical

    Which is a slur to any race has no place in this country.  I was almost beaten up by a group of young black men who were using the "N" word at a table near my 5 year old son and I as we had lunch this past winter,when I asked they watch their language, not only around my child but in general.  be it that word the "c" word used during this trial or the "H" word made famous by Gerorge Jefferson in the 70s, I cringe upon hearing such vile language.  As a society we need to have zero tolerance for this behavior.  Yet our culture allows it to occur daily.  How can we begin to put a stop to this. What can out president and elected leaders do to turn is behavior around, and put a stop it.  This needs to end, and now.

    •  Why are we talking about language when a child was (5+ / 0-)

      hunted down and murdered?  It is a distraction.  This case is about a justice system which almost let this Zimmerman free (due to racial history).  That is the problem. The rest is distraction.

      •  Language is intimately involved in the evil (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        vcmvo2

        rotten racist history of the USA.

        Racist history and the bigotry of the evil GZ go together. It is all connected unfortunately, IMO.

        nosotros no somos estúpidos

        by a2nite on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:31:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Agreed that discourse and language shape (4+ / 0-)

          reality and perceptions and language has been a weapon  in the oppression of minorities and women.  My complaint is that in the midst of this trial, the focus is on a word the victim used while feeling threatened.  It is a distraction from the analysis of the wrong-doing here unless one assumes that Zimmerman was justified in killing over being called a "cracker."  Sticks and Stones.

      •  Both young men (0+ / 0-)

        Misters Martin and Zimmerman both were part of a horrible event, both families have suffered, Mr. Martins more so, but my point was language, why do we as Americans in 2013 permit  vile language like th N ,H and C words which describe skin color still exist.  Not that this would have allowed a different outcome if the words were never said, but the time has come to end this behavior, profane language has no place in my life or my children's or Americas, we need President Obama and other elected leaders to start this movement with community leaders as well.  Reverend Sharpton and Jackson can use their clout to help end this horrible part of our history.  The time is now.

      •  The underlying question, which surely (0+ / 0-)

        concerned the prosecution since, to my understanding, they elicited all of this on direct, is that the use of the words in question could theoretically lead a jury to infer that Ms. Jeantel was a racist and therefore had an axe to grind, casting doubt on her underlying credibility.  I don't personally go all the way down that road - ok, she was rude, I've been rude before too - but it's possible and, when you need a unanimous verdict, you have to address all of those potential issues head-on.  It's messy, but it's the price of having trials held where verdicts must unanimously find all elements beyond a reasonable doubt.

        "The first drawback of anger is that it destroys your inner peace; the second is that it distorts your view of reality. If you come to understand that anger is really unhelpful, you can begin to distance yourself from anger." - The Dalai Lama

        by auron renouille on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:41:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  So basically, you say "People swear, blame Obama!" (0+ / 0-)

      I don't look to our leaders of government to police our behavior, be it good or bad behavior.  They're there to govern, not to be our national parents.  That's why we're Democrats.

      And btw, while I am truly glad that no harm came to you, it was foolish to intervene in that kind of situation.  Get up and walk away.  What you describe is inappropriate in public but it was a tinderbox, and you threw a lit match on it.  Any person, anywhere, who goes up to people behaving rudely and goes "think of the children!" just makes me roll my eyes.

      So I guess I roll my eyes in your general direction.

      "The first drawback of anger is that it destroys your inner peace; the second is that it distorts your view of reality. If you come to understand that anger is really unhelpful, you can begin to distance yourself from anger." - The Dalai Lama

      by auron renouille on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:36:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Never blame Obama (0+ / 0-)

        He has never done any wrong, but we can turn to him to guide us through this issue.  Who better then the leader of the world, a black man himself, to lead the charge to rid  the country of hate speech.  I would be greatly hurt if he has  ever used that nasty term, Paula Dean is righty losing her company for using the term, and deserves no less, maybe some jail time for lying about her use, as her lied under oath about it.  At the same time nasty terms used to describe whites, Cra....r, and Hon...y need to be buried too.  This is 2013 not 1947 Alabama, ( no offence to my Alabana friends) lets us start now so future generations of American citizens never have to hear such garbage.  

  •  I imagine Trayvon wasn't using the word (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HairyTrueMan, Dr Swig Mcjigger

    as a term of endearment.  Who knows how the jury will view Trayvon's use of the word.  

    Never argue with an idiot. They will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.

    by thestructureguy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:12:52 AM PDT

    •  Good point.. (14+ / 0-)

      Trayvon should've found some other word to describe the guy who was hunting him like an animal.

      o.O

      •  Yeah.... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        badlands, Sychotic1

        Like, oh, my, there's a gentleman following me and acting weirdly.  Like that would ever be how a 17 year old would describe being scared while being followed by a creepy guy.  Being followed by a creepy guy for doing nothing.
        Trayvon Martin was 17 years old, coming home from the market with skittles and tea, minding his business talking on the phone with his friend.
        Notices he's being followed by a creepy dude who is acting very suspiciously. Tells his friend on the phone about the creepy ass cracker following and scaring him.
        A 17 year old on the phone to a friend can say whatever he wants about some scary creepy dude following him, calling the creepy dude a 'cracker' does not make him a racist.
        What's wrong here isn't what Trayvon Martin did or said, it's what George Zimmerman said and definitely what he did.

        I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

        by Lilyvt on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:39:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  You know this is going to be a movie and you (5+ / 0-)

    know Rachel Jeantel is going to be played by Gabourey Sidibe. And people freaking love Gabourey Sidibe.

    So the defense is being mean to Rachel Jeantel and I see the film version with Gabourey Sidibe.

    It's not pretty for Zimmerman.

  •  That's Creepy Ass Cracker, (7+ / 0-)

    and so is John Roberts.

  •  Thanks, Chauncey, for a diary that is right on the (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Deep Texan, a2nite, Diogenes2008, vcmvo2

    point.  

  •  I already called Florida. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Deep Texan, catwho

    I put in a suggestion that it's time they change their motto from "In God We Trust" to something secular - like why not "The Cracker State."

    He said "Thank you, I will put that in as a suggestion."

    So it's already in process.

    Warren/3-D Print of Warren in 2016!

    by dov12348 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:26:43 AM PDT

  •  I never knew what cracker meant. (0+ / 0-)

    Is that true? I always wondered that.

    "Disappointment is anger for wimps," -Dr. Gregory House

    by freakofsociety on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:39:22 AM PDT

  •  Right on... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    thanks for this.

    If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed. Albert Einstein

    by kharma on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:44:30 AM PDT

  •  This is simpler than you've made it. (10+ / 0-)

    1. The jury does not have to like a witness to believe them.
    2. The State does not have to prove that Trayvon Martin never said anything remotely racist or that he was a nice person. It just has to prove that Zimmerman killed him with malice aforethought.

    When you get into a fight with Zimmerman over who is the most racist, you lose.

    I listened to her. She is not likeable. I agree with the victim that, based on what we know so far, Zimmerman is very creepy and is not black.

    Only the fact that Zimmerman was regarded by the victim as creepy is relevant, as it tends to show that he was being stalked.

    Stick to the elements of murder and don't play on their turf or you will lose both public opinion and the jury.

    If you hate government, don't run for office in that government.

    by Bensdad on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 11:53:34 AM PDT

    •  I think the opinion reached that she was not (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, sukeyna, Tommye, Sychotic1

      likable was not a mystery or a singular event in Rachel Jeantel's life. She knew full well who she would be facing in the witness stand. I completely doubt if ever in her life, facing these people, she ever experienced anything but dislike.

      I think expecting her to be all dimples and lollypops at her friends murder trial. Her friend who she heard being murdered. I think expecting her to be a friendly out-going gal is wacky. She did her best.

      give the NRA the Royal Flush join Stop The NRA

      by 88kathy on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:04:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You're missing an important point, though ... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      taffers

      ... the State also has to prove that Zimmerman was not acting in self-defense when he killed Martin.

      Showing that Martin used a race-based slur in describing Zimmerman is likely, however wrongly, to sway the jury toward thinking that Zimmerman had reason to believe that Martin was threatening his life.

      •  You are missing a point, too. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sychotic1

        FIRST, the prosecution must make its case. THEN, he gets to present the defense. The defense CANNOT be he was afraid of Travyon because Trayvon told a girl a creepy cracker was chasing him.  All of the evidence is that he was tracking Trayvon and the "creepy cracker" remark underscores this. It won't help the defense if the jury can ignore the racial aspect of this remark.

        In fact, they just need to fucking ignore race and this diary doesn't help the jurors adhere to the law.

        If you hate government, don't run for office in that government.

        by Bensdad on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 01:29:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Wait a minute (0+ / 0-)

        How does the state have to prove it was NOT self defense? There are two determinations in this case. One, did George Zimmerman kill Travon Martin or did he not. That determination is settled, Zimmerman has admitted to killing Martin. Thus, he has committed homicide.

        Zimmerman is claiming that his act of homicide was justified as an act of self-defense. If he cannot make that case, then his defense fails and he is judged for the homicide he admits to committing. That is the second determination, and the burden of proof is on the one making the claim.

        "Is there anybody listening? Is there anyone who sees what's going on? Read between the lines, criticize the words they're selling. Think for yourself, and feel the walls become sand beneath your feet." --Geoff Tate, Queensryche

        by DarthMeow504 on Fri Jul 05, 2013 at 07:17:24 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  You have captured the problem perfectly... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, Bensdad, worldlotus

      This is now a court case and not a public opinion case.  If the jurors were honest, they believed Zimmerman was innocent when the case started.  Not, he might be innocent, or, I wonder how he will explain his innocence.  They were to believe he was 100% innocent.  Now it is up to the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman is guilty.  Thus far, including what I've heard today, I personally don't think they are close to proving this.  If I understand the law correctly, if Zimmerman felt he was in fear of serious injury or death, then he was legally allowed to protect himself.  Regardless of how he got into that position.  It seems silly that an innocent young man, who seemed to be in fear of his own life because some wanna be cowboy confronted him, is legally allowed to be shot if he starts to win a fight he didn't start.  

      All this other stuff is just a distraction to the case and probably helps the defense because it muddies the waters and creates doubt.  The prosecution needs to get the focus back on an innocent 17 yr old walking home who was murdered because he defended his rights as a human being.

      •  Your analysis is SPOT on. The problem is that (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        a2nite, worldlotus, taffers

        it is relatively difficult eliminate reasonable doubt on self defense when the only other eye witness is dead.  Hence, if Zimmerman walks, it will probably be because of the way the law is written.  

        - "Justice is what love looks like in public." -Cornel West -

        by FreeWoman19 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 02:46:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  That's an insult to crackers. (0+ / 0-)

    I seriously doubt he has the skills to be considered a cracker.

  •  Zimmerman is a creepy cracker (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FreeWoman19

    and a bigoted violent hate filled murder to boot. Stand your ground is an abomination and it empowers this kind of person to 'legally' kill anything that creepy killers feel threatens them.    

  •  Hmmm... (0+ / 0-)

    He was behaving in a very creepy fashion.

    He was behaving like an ass, stalking a minor child.

    While not all whites are racist, he was behaving like a racist white "cracker", chasing after and harassing a black teen simply for walking down the street.

    Is it racist, if it's just the plain, unvarnished truth?

    •  I don't know if that last argument holds water (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dr Swig Mcjigger, DFWmom

      considering that I have heard people defend the use of "n----r" by saying that they wouldn't call just any black person that, only one who "acted like a n----r."  Which is of course some racist bullshit.

      All other things being equal, "cracker" is generally a race-based term that is at least somewhat derogatory, and ideally shouldn't be used.

      Of course, the whole point here is that all other things are not equal.

      •  I see your point (0+ / 0-)

        ...but I've lived in the South all my life, and I have to say that "cracker" simply doesn't have the firepower that the "n----r" word does.  

        Note how we type the word "cracker", and yet choose not to fully type out that other word.

        They just aren't equivalent.  

        •  it doesn't have the firepower of n-er (0+ / 0-)

          but do you even doubt for a second that those who use it in a derogatory way don't wish that it wasn't at least as damaging, if not more so, than n-er? Intent should be more important than reception. 100 people could hear something and take it 100 different ways. One person who says something can only intend it for one meaning and effect whether it is received that way or not.

          •  No (0+ / 0-)

            The whole point is that "cracker" cannot be as powerful. Intent does not matter. No matter how hard black people might wish for it to cut to the bone at times, it never, ever will the way saying the "n-word" to black people will.

            Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

            by moviemeister76 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 04:27:41 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Oh no, absolutely it doesn't. (0+ / 0-)

          But "is it racist if it's the truth?" and "well, he was acting like a cracker" don't wash, to me.  Especially because they are so easily turned around to apply in the other direction.

  •  They're not equivalent (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Be Skeptical

    But I hate being called it. Hate it. I get the right to define myself, and cracker is not a term I want used.

    http://callatimeout.blogspot.com/ Jesus Loves You.

    by DAISHI on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:19:10 PM PDT

  •  Your history of the word 'cracker' is imaginative, (4+ / 0-)

    and colorful, but I believe is inaccurate.  In the recently published book entitled 1775, by Kevin Phillips, the author traces the word to colonial/pre-revolutionary period.  According to the author, it was a word that the white coastal elites (plantation society) used to describe the upland, poor whites who had migrated from central Pennsylvania, Maryland and western Virginia.  These poor whites were in many cases descendants of the 17% of the population in the 18th C. who were convicted criminals and shipped to the Maryland and Virginia by Britain.  Many remained poor and migrated to the upland regions of Georgia, the Carolinas and Virginia.

    So originally, 'crackers' was a word that wealthy white people used to describe poorer white people.

    There are three kinds of stupid: 'Stupid', 'Really Stupid', and 'Stupid-Like-a-Republican'. With sincere apologies to Benjamin Disraeli.

    by MARTinNJ on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:22:49 PM PDT

  •  Slightly off topic, but does anyone else get the (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HairyTrueMan, Sychotic1

    feeling the prosecution was unable to find any strong witnesses that would help prove Zimmerman was not in fear of his life or serious injury when he shot.  It seems strange, but the prosecution is almost having to attack their own witnesses.  I keep waiting for them to put on a witness or show some facts that Zimmerman was the aggressor and shot Trayvon because he felt he could as a neighborhood watch person.  If the prosecution didn't call these witnesses, I'm certain the defense would because they seem to be helping the defenses case. Am I missing something?

    •  I wonder about the motivation of the prosecution (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HairyTrueMan, taffers, Lily O Lady

      Do they want to win or is this some kind of show?

      nosotros no somos estúpidos

      by a2nite on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:33:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think it's a show. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Pi Li, taffers

        But it's not about whether or not they want to win: They DO want to win. They just know that they don't have evidence that proves it beyond a reasonable doubt.

        What do you think they could/should do differently?

        If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

        by HairyTrueMan on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:40:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't have a clue about what they should do. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          HairyTrueMan, worldlotus

          It just seems they are having to fight back against what their OWN witnesses are saying.  I've never seen this before.  And it keeps happening.  Neighborhood witnesses, Doctors, police...it just seems strange.

          •  Very strange indeed. (0+ / 0-)

            This whole trial is bizarre. I still haven't heard a good explanation of why the prosecution would seek the testimony of sketchy voice experts when they have their own law enforcement personnel on the State's payroll. And they have access to FBI experts too. Usually you see the defense try to admit expert testimony from people with questionable credentials/opinions to achieve reasonable doubt.

            If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

            by HairyTrueMan on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 01:02:04 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  I'm getting the same impression. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pi Li, taffers

      The State doesn't seem to have any evidence to contradict Zimmerman's version of events.

      If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

      by HairyTrueMan on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:36:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What about the dispatcher telling him, (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Chitown Charlie, sukeyna

        "We don't need you to do that," when Zimmerman said that he was going to get out of his car and follow Martin? That seems to be the most damning bit of information. Zimmerman chose to escalate his actions beyond what the police department wanted, which caused him to engage and murder an innocent teen.

        "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

        by Lily O Lady on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 01:07:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Did you watch any of the trial last week? (0+ / 0-)

          Did you pay particular attention to the testimony of Wendy Dorival or Sean Noffke?

          What about John Good? Did you see watch him testify?

          If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

          by HairyTrueMan on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 01:32:57 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  These prosecution witnesses... (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      taffers, HairyTrueMan, hmi, VClib, Sychotic1

      ...and these recordings, have mostly been very good for the defence. Zimmerman has basically been able to get his whole story out there...his version of events, without having to get on the stand and be subject to cross.

      Yes, there have been some inconsistencies, but even the state's own LEO witness said that that often happens after a traumatic incident. And the jury also saw someone conduct interview after interview after interview with police without asking for counsel or invoking his Miranda rights.

      The forensic evidence is still to come, but the prosecution still has a lot of work to do to get to beyond a reasonable doubt.

      Black Holes Suck.

      by Pi Li on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:55:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Jeralyn at TalkLeft wrote an excellent piece... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        UbuRoi

        about inconsistent testimony.

        My point is, Rachel Jenteal told essentially the same story three times or more (we haven’t seen her depositions) while Zimmerman, Tracy Martin, Brandy Green, and Chad Joseph and just about ever other witness have all had variations. The one that seems the most suspect is Jeantels, because it’s so pat. No one retells an event exactly the same way ever time and with such confidence – except someone who has practiced and memorized it.

        http://www.talkleft.com/...

        If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

        by HairyTrueMan on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 01:15:51 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  It amazes me.... (11+ / 0-)

    how many people there are who are desperate to believe Zimmerman, and to protect poor defenseless White men.... Gag.

    "We have only the moral ground we actually inhabit, not the moral ground we claim." - It Really Is That Important

    by Diogenes2008 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 12:44:59 PM PDT

    •  White men are capable of being defenseless. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Wednesday Bizzare, Be Skeptical

      That is irrelevant to the fact that Zimmerman was an armed man chasing and subsequently gunning down an innocent teen based on his racist beliefs.

      Why is it that white men have a different metric for anything that is apples to apples? It's just as sad when you assert it as when the people you mention do it. I'm not more or less a victim in a same situation as anyone else. I deserve to be judged on the merits, not on my race. Gag on you.

    •  Welll... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Diogenes2008, earicicle

      ...we white folks are under attack from everybody, so, clearly, we are the ones who need the most protection.

      SIGH

      Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

      by moviemeister76 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 01:45:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Me too. It is sickening. The trial is turning out (3+ / 0-)

      to be exactly like this, too. Evidence that points to GZ lying and being totally full of shit is characterized as harmless and every single thing testified to in TM's favor is seen as sinister.

      I have never seen such a bunch of utter bullshit in my life.

      "Southern nights have you ever felt a southern night?" Allen Toussaint ~~Remember the Gulf of Mexico~~

      by rubyr on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 03:03:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  He is sealing his own fate right now. (5+ / 0-)

    The recordings with the lead investigator. Jury is listening to them.

    •  They keep cutting away (7+ / 0-)

      But these interviews seem very damning. Particularly the part where Zimmerman is simultaneously claiming that it's his voice screaming and Trayvon put his hand over his mouth to suffocate him. And the investigator is asking him just exactly when it was that he was being suffocated.

      The other thing that makes Zimmerman look bad, I think, is his tendency to embellish his account with bad movie dialog. Particularly when he says that after he shot Trayvon through the heart, Trayvon sits up and says "You got me". Good God. Who but a cop wanna-be would think of something like that?

      Many other inconsistencies as well, between Zimmerman's account and the accounts of the various witnesses.

  •  Didn't know Latinos were crackers now (7+ / 0-)

    We've got a whole bunch of other names slung against  us, mind you. I know that a lot of people like to pretend Latinos are officially white (Zimmerman, by the way, clearly not one of us who can pass as Anglo) and therefore excuse themselves from having to think critically about race or ethnicity where we're concerned, but seriously, pretending we're the majority and we're the people in power? That we are the architects of institutional racism?

    I guess race is a black and white issue for you. Those of us who are neither are used to being left out, but thanks for demonstrating just how impressively clueless those who talk about racial justice can be.

    And just to head things off: I am no fan of Zimmerman.

  •  Zimmerman's attorneys are just trying to (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Diogenes2008

    muddy the waters. They have a crappy client who stalked and killed an innocent teenaged boy.  Facts are not on their side.

    So they do the best they can with what they have to work with. Hopefully the jury is smart enough to filter out the bullshit and look at the facts.

  •  Great diary. Prosecution brought their A game (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    doroma, Diogenes2008, a2nite

    today.

  •  The he kind of diary that make DK look bad (4+ / 0-)

    First of all, this is NOT in regards to the use by Trayvon. It is in regards to YOU who defend its use in general conversation overall.

    1) They aren't offended!

    False. Many are and such arguments are made about lesser racial slurs towards other races. It isn't a popularity contest. Racially motivated terms are wrong. Period. You don't get to use them against whites and have it be a lesser offense than anyone else. That thing called equality. Learn to actually believe it instead of being a self serving liar.

    2) You have to earn it!

    Literally the same argument of the n word used by white bigots. I'm not joking. I'm white. I get to hear these justifications, these exact same arguments, before they realize I'm not on board by virtue of skin tint.

    3) It isn't a racist term! It started as a.... or used to be a....

    It isn't what it is now. You know how it's used now. And you are a bad person for waxing historical in a way you KNOW to be false. You're not a historian and you're going on like a convict about how innocent you are. You're guilty of bigotry. You know how you mean it and you know that you're trying to carve out a mental loophole where you get to insult whites with no recourse. Yeah. Cause I'm really guilty of what other people of an arbitrary skin tint did, particularly in the light of the fact that my family has NO ties to American history before a few decades ago.

    4) White people use it ironically.

    Ahem. n word. Rap. Nuff said. Another argument whites use to justify racism.

    It's not "the truth". You want to insult white people for being white? You want to hold us to a different metric because of an American history not a lot of us had any hand in? Guess what? Expect a giant fight on your hands. I don't play that game. I believe in equality, yours as well as my own. You can call Zimmerman a socipath without resorting to and defending racism. Just like you can call a bank robber a worthless individual without calling him the n word, eh Paula?

    Shame on all of you who defend racism. Trayvon's use was unfortunate and irrelevant to the fact that Zimmerman deserves to be found guilty. But it's sad how much anti-white sentiment exists here. I'm not acting like a victim, before you go there. Far from it. I'm acting like someone who isn't going to tolerate bad assertions from bad persons based on some sort of racial guilt argument.

    •  I agree except on one point. I would argue that (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KayCeSF, a2nite, ridemybike

      Trayvon identifying a creepy, white appearing, adult who he believed was stalking him as a "cracker" is not the same as a person who uses the term "nigger" to dehumanize black people.  For many black people in Florida, a "cracker" is white person who is behaving in a racist way toward you, not just any white person.  Not many teenagers have the level of maturity required to not return "hate" for "hate", particularly when the added element of fear is involved.  

      We can have a different discussion about whether it's racist for black teenaged boys to see white people as racist by default (which I am not saying Trayvon did).

      I appreciate this diary because it rebuts the argument of the defense that Trayvon attacked Zimmerman first and that he attacked him for racial reasons.  This is the first such rebuttal I have read, heard or seen.

      - "Justice is what love looks like in public." -Cornel West -

      by FreeWoman19 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 03:29:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Why does it matter? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FreeWoman19, a2nite

        Even if it was directedly and aggressively racist does it give Zimmerman the right to attack or kill that boy?

        And why should we be worried about being nice or politically correct to someone whose stalking us?

        •  Your quests have already been answered. (0+ / 0-)

          The murder was already stated as in no way justified regardless of any racist language.

          And no. Racism is never correct. Not in a moment either. Just ask Paula Deen. There is no excusable racism. It's all bad. Period.

      •  I addressed that point, though. (0+ / 0-)

        "a "cracker" is white person who is behaving in a racist way toward you, not just any white person"

        There are many whites who consider the n word as meaning a negative bad behaving black person. It's the same logic and similarly wrong. It's preferable to just call the person an a-hole as that's race neutral.

        Again, Trayvon's transgression was basically one not meant for polite company and in NO way is what happened to him justified even a little.

    •  As a white person... (0+ / 0-)

      ...I am laying down the bullshit card. I wish a lot of white people would stop being so damn ignorant and read a book about race once in a while instead of assuming that they are the end all, be all experts of it.

      Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

      by moviemeister76 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 04:21:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  As a white person (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Be Skeptical, Dr Swig Mcjigger

        your opinion means no more or less than anyone else's. Guess you didn't read enough about race to think that claiming whitehood mattered to your opinion.None of my arguments were race based and so laying down any card on the basis of you being a white just shows you to be the less socially evolved one.

        Also you never made an argument. You simply asserted "read a book". Thanks for that scintillating insight. You have furthered the progressive movement.

        •  What I find fascinating (0+ / 0-)

          Is that it really is like you are either a troll or are literally speaking a different language than me. It's kind of amazing, really. I guess it shows the weakness of the written language. If everyone does not share the same definition of words, then no understanding can be reached.

          Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

          by moviemeister76 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 11:50:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  You can't be that unfamiliar with the formula here (0+ / 0-)

      often times when something like this comes up it quickly turns in to a cluster-f of local dialect experts and history majors projecting their knowledge and experiences on to an individual they know nothing about or an enormous group of people one could never pin down.  

      The diarist has probably posted this very diary in three other spots with varying degrees of support and followers and someone always sucks it up.  

      This place is famous for ensuring that claims of and pushback on racism align firmly with the popular thought of the day and that my friend will never change.  

      When there was sort of a racial purge done here where members were removed from the site over calling people racist, the amount of contradiction and irony was astounding when looking at racial issues that have popped up since that time.  

      This case is no different.  MLK's dream is held up as a beacon for our future and pissed on here often within the same link and again that will never, ever change.  

      Who ya gonna shoot wit dat homie, you'd rather blast an original instead of a phony, true macaroni, you don't even know me, and why does your gun say n****z only?

      by mim5677 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 05:50:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Florida crackers and local lingo (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IreGyre, Kristina40

    A few other posters have said this above, but because others challenged them about it, I want to reaffirm that they are correct. I lived in Florida twice in my life: once for a couple years in the late 1970s in South Florida, and once for six years in the 2000s on the Panhandle in an area the locals fondly called the "Redneck Riviera," and in both places, both the locals themselves and transplanted or visiting Northerners often referred to the local whites who had been born and raised in the area as "Florida crackers."

    I was given several different explanations for the term, including that it derived from the old song "Jimmy crack corn" and that it had to do with the locals cracking open the shells of oysters and clams. I don't think anybody really knows for sure. Whether or not it was considered derogatory probably depended on the context. While living in a part of the Redneck Riviera that was inhabited mostly by natives, I once overheard two local waitresses talking contemptuously about "Yankees," and one said to the other, "Ya know, they don't even seem to realize we're insulting them when we call them a Yankee!" So apparently in their case, Yankee was meant as a slur, whereas as a Northerner myself, it wouldn't bother me a bit.

    Another interesting thing I noticed once was when one of the local white "crackers" and a local black female were conversing in my presence. I could barely understand anything either one was saying because their dialects were so thick. But while listening to them, it hit me how similar her way of talking (which was like Rachel Jaentel's) sounded to his thick Southern accent. And they had no problem at all understanding what each other were saying. It occurred to me that the two were probably linguistically related historically, because of so many African Americans having learned English while they were slaves in the South.

  •  Yeah, sure he is. Stalking a black kid with a gun (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, sukeyna, doroma, Sychotic1

    watching him from a distance with his gun, freaking creepy.

    And I don't see why the defense is up in arms about this--doesn't seem like a good point for them. If you say someone is "creepy" and "following you" that denotes fear, not aggression. As every woman on that jury should understand.

    Ou sont les neigedens d'antan?

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 02:05:54 PM PDT

    •  given the GF made a sexual joke about it (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      UbuRoi

      she didn't perceive any danger.

      if i were defense counsel, i would hammer the
      "You didn't call the police?" line in 30 different ways.

      It'd be "You didn't tell him to run?"

      You didn't shout "Run Forrest Run"?

      You didn't say "Run for your life"?

      you never thought he needed to flee or call for help?

      You never thought to call his father?

      You never thought to call his mother?

      •  Really? (0+ / 0-)

        You do know she wasn't there, right? She was on the phone and couldn't see what was happening. She could tell that he was distressed and probably didn't want to abandon him.

        Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

        by moviemeister76 on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 04:17:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Derogatory language is wrong. Period. No excuses (3+ / 0-)

    about white privilege or vernacular of age, race, religion or economic status. Just stop using phrases that insult people based on above classes. Political savvy, is fair game for insults.

    "Mais n'enculons pas des mouches." (Let's not split hairs) Ian Fleming, Casino Royal.

    by Kvetchnrelease on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 02:44:14 PM PDT

  •  Good diary, chaunceydevega. It's a shame (5+ / 0-)

    that it resulted in a bunch of bull crap about what words mean and what words are offensive, especially when uttered by a teenager who was definitely in fear for his life.

    This diary could have led to some thoughtful commentary but didn't. What a shame. Thanks, anyway.

    "Southern nights have you ever felt a southern night?" Allen Toussaint ~~Remember the Gulf of Mexico~~

    by rubyr on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 03:05:48 PM PDT

  •  Silly me (0+ / 0-)

    I thought it was because white people are the color of a saltine cracker.

    He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would suffice. Albert Einstein

    by Cairns on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 03:08:38 PM PDT

  •  Someone is always trying to (2+ / 0-)

    change the conversation.  Let's take the focus off the victim and focus on the poor murderer.  Not this time, Zim, not this time.

    being mindful and keepin' it real

    by Raggedy Ann on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 03:34:51 PM PDT

  •  I'm partial to "white devil" myself. (0+ / 0-)

    Always puts a smile on my face...don't know why.

    The word "motorcar" has the same effect.

    I like arcane terms.

  •  What does it have to do with the case? (0+ / 0-)

    Honestly, what does it matter if Trayvon called him a cracker or not?  I simply don't see the relevance.  I guess the defense harped on it to imply that Trayvon was the racist who stalked, shot, and killed a minority because he didn't recognize him?

    •  To the case...nothing (0+ / 0-)

      at least I don't think so.

      However, in terms of Zimmerman's PR campaign, it's interesting that Zimmerman has gone to great lengths in asserting and harping on the fact that he is a Latino.

      However, Trayvon Martin, who was being pursued by Zimmerman, perceived him as a "cracker" and not of being any sort of Latino.

      and I guess that Martin's perceptions of the situation don't count...

  •  thank you for this diary (0+ / 0-)

    it's perfect.

    Loving me some Obama right about now... Economy is improving, he is moving forward, just like he said... and Michele Obama, oh my... Awesome!

    by titotitotito on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 05:01:48 PM PDT

  •  Fantastic diary (0+ / 0-)

    Nothing more to say here

    God is good. If it isn't good. It isn't God.

    by publicv on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 05:41:54 PM PDT

  •  To the diarist.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    titotitotito

    I know there are a lot of people out there as you've described.  But please know there are a lot of white people out here suffering this trial right along with you.  I'm sickened by it all.  And you know, I'm not sure why someone isn't pointing out that Trayvon, a basketball fan, would hardly be planning a heist on that night.  I know this, because I'm a die hard baseball fan, and the only place I am on All Star night is at the store, and then home to sit my butt on the couch.  The NBA game started at 7:30 that night.  

    •  It's an important diary yet I see that as well (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      titotitotito

      The diarist is correct about Zimmerman's supporters being largely ignorant of the history of race relations in the US and thus the immediate context of this crime.

      I had wanted to add, and had typed a big long comment that I fatefully lost somehow, that I think ...

      that we cannot assume that "White American Thinks..", as the diarist puts it, what the nasty tweets etc said about that young woman. Because those that share so vocally share disproportionately to their number, very often.

      There are a lot of generalizations in the diary. I understand that that happens when people are angry and fed up. And surely African Americans have every reason to feel that way in the US in general and around this case in particular. And also, generalizing about groups of people, especially when it may not be actually true,  is not helpful to the goal of getting people to get it. When people see a group they belong to maligned with a sweeping brush, they often tune out. (yes I get the irony). THe diarist has an important message so having people tune out doesn't serve that purpose.

      It is easy to think that what is most outspoken and loud is the majority opinion (of White America, in this instance) but it often is not and I think that factor is occurring at least somewhat in this instance. The racists are commenting and posting on social media disproportionally loudly about Ms. Jeantel because they feel a stereotype they have of Black people//women is being validated and they want to crow about Being Right and enjoy maligning her in their racist bonding way. On the other hand, the members of White America who, when first looking at Rachel Jeantel and see a very young woman put into a very difficult and stressful position, are the ones who are not sharing nearly as much. The White people I know, at least, see someone who witnessed a friend being murdered yet is forced to interact with the person defending the killer, and forced to sit opposite the killer for hours, while it's insinuated that she's unreliable, of poor character, and a liar. What a shitty experience!  

      I hope the jurors can see that she is obviously a no bullshit truth teller. She isn't trying to make Trayvon look good...tells it like it is. Honestly I found her morally admirable. She detests being there most likely and is showing up doing the right thing for her friend.

      •  I can certainly agree that too many White people (0+ / 0-)

        probably do not go there and see her as a human being who went through something horrific at a young age (18) and now is being forced by someone hostile and demanding to recount it.
        Too many White people do not see her as a human being or empathise the same way the would if she were a White coed, say.

        I read that studies have show that White people have trouble empathising with dark skinned people, they weren't testing racism itself and I think it didn't even correlate or was a larger/broader effect than racism. I find the press coverage is like that.

        Remember when CNN got all "those poor boys have had their lives ruined" around those ?White High school football players who ?drugged then raped a young woman?

        I don't hear the press crawling into Ms. Jeantel's shoes much if at all. Has anyone said "how dreadful it must be for her to be put on the spot like this after witnessing her friend being killed and having to see the killer.."

      •  fair points, important though on white privilege.. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        moviemeister76, a2nite

        is the luxury of wanted to have the best assumed about you. I don't give a pass to white folks that blacks folks in this country most certainly do not receive.

        White folks who are just and on the right side of history get the distinction.

      •  I think there are various theories... (0+ / 0-)

        as to why Ms. Jeantel did not perform as well as she should have. Certainly your points are valid. However, it doesn't take away from the fact that she did poorly on the witness stand. That really is the bottom line. No one is going analyze, from a sociological perspective, why she did poorly. Certainly the jury won't.

        I would posit that the insinuation that she is unreliable and a liar came during and after she testified. We talked about this in court last week - the DA and Public Defender and myself. I think the blame rests with the prosecutor for not prepping her. For not setting the scene for her, for giving her a sense of what the environment would be like, and most importantly - what the stakes are!

        Whatever she is truly feeling - she needed mold it into an emotional and gripping testimony that got the jury on HER side. I think you are right - she detested being there. But it really showed and I don't think it looked good. My opinion only.

        •  I am very interested... (0+ / 0-)

          to know why Rachel's testimony didn't look good to you?  How did she do poorly? Why did she need to mold it into something you or the jury could accept?  Not being snarky...just wondering....

          •  couple things (0+ / 0-)

            And let me fully disclose that I did not see her entire testimony, nor her entire cross examination. But from what I saw, she appeared to be pretty much dismissive. It looked like she didn't want to be there and that it was almost inconvenient for her to be there.

            I will concede though that I thought the defense made a mistake in keeping her up there for so long. And that was something I left out yesterday - because I didn't have time to write it. The defense attorney was almost trying to bait her or mocking her intelligence.

            Of course, I'm not on the jury. But I very much understand the sociological and cultural considerations as to why she wouldn't want to be there and her skepticism of the justice system and law enforcement. But I'm not sure the jury will take that into consideration. On the whole, I think she probably helped the prosecutor in some respects. But I think she probably helped the defense too.

            •  I watched almost the entire thing.... (0+ / 0-)

              It was almost laughable at the generational and cultural gap between West and Rachel.  He, at times, was incredulous at her answers.  This made her angry.  It seemed to me he couldn't believe that she wasn't Trayvon's girlfriend...BECAUSE there were hundreds of texts between them.  She talked about the blue tooth Trayvon used....she talked about the ALL STAR game coming up....she talked about how he got out of the rain...that's why it took so long to get home...and West didn't get it for real or on purpose.  She answered him one time, and he walked away like he wasn't listening....and then said he was distracted.  The second day he condescendingly asked her if she was okay.  She was raw, she was real, she was brutal in her assessment of what happened.  She lies about a couple of things...her age...to make it seem like she was a minor, her name...a lot of black people down here use two or three names..it's normal, and she lied about the day of the wake...didn't want to see Trayvon's body.  I didn't hear any other lies.  She didn't embellish anything...logical observations and short answers.  If she is going to be condemned for adding to her testimony the more she was questioned....then so does Mr. Good and George Zimmerman.  In the end....she was herself...and I think that's what we would ask of anyone testifying in a murder trial...isn't it?  

              •  some good points (0+ / 0-)

                about the defense and their approach to Ms. Jenteal. I think it goes to credibility. Was she a credible witness to the jury? For the prosecution?

                She lied about her age. Her name. Where she was the day of the wake. Is the jury going to hold that against her in terms of credibility? How would any member of the jury or would the jury know about the use of multiple names in the community?

                In terms of what you want out of a witness - you want believability, trust, empathy, credibility. Was she herself? Probably. Was she all those things I listed? Probably not.

                I guess I just think she could have done better in the manner in which she gave her testimony. That's all.

                •  Lies about her self.... (0+ / 0-)

                  have zero to do with what happened that night.  Age? Name? Day of the wake?  Personal info?  Not relevant to any part of the case....in my opinion.  However, George lied repeatedly....about not profiling, about not following...about his money...about anything that would give him the break.  I hope it all comes out.  

  •  the defense talks about zimmerman right (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    to defend himself.  but what about trayvon martin right to defend himself from a person who stalked him, possessed a concealed won and ultimately killed him?  why is it trayvon's rights not taken into accoutt?  personally i do not care if he beat zimmerman up.  i only wish he knocked zimmerman unconscious.  and i truly wish people like zimmerman can not carry a gun.  this incident shows exactly what is wrong with gin ownership.

    yes indeed there was disgusting bigotry on display in how rachel was treated by the defense and the character assassination in the media.  is zimmerman a creepy cracker.  no he is worse.  he is a menace to decent society.

    "The real wealth of a nation consists of the contributions of its people and nature." -- Rianne Eisler

    by noofsh on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 07:21:18 PM PDT

  •  Intellectual dishonesty.... (0+ / 0-)

    ...requires intellect, so I think for a lot of them, saying that "cracker is just the same as the n-word" is ignorance and the inability to grasp meanings of words or shades of meaning.

  •  When this trial is over, will you, Chauncey (0+ / 0-)

    be carry a book of matches or a bucket of water?

    Cause he gets up in the morning, And he goes to work at nine, And he comes back home at five-thirty, Gets the same train every time.

    by Keith930 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 08:06:02 PM PDT

  •  As Bill Maher said... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, Sychotic1

    "If you think saying 'cracker' is the same as saying 'n**ger'... you're a cracker."

    https://www.youtube.com/...

    I would literally start laughing if someone called me a cracker. For anyone to attempt to compare these terms. Oh what am I saying. The right has long been trying to redefine racism as someone pointing out racism

    Money doesn't talk it swears.

    by Coss on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 08:15:46 PM PDT

  •  Just a distraction. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sukeyna

    I sure hope the jury doesn't get sucked into all this garbage.

    Zimmerman went looking for trouble "Sir, we don't need you to do that" style, found it and now has blood on his hands.

    Nobody needed to die that day.

    ***Be Excellent To One Another***
    IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

    by potatohead on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:53:04 PM PDT

  •  Thank you so much (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    I heard the defense's harassment of Rachel, and found myself freaking out at how horribly, cynically, unbelievably, nakedly brutal and racist it was. What her brave testimony did for me was confirm that Martin was indeed being stalked and was terrified of what his stalker wanted to do to him.

    I realized that if that scumbag of a lawyer had tried that cynical, racist shit in front of my peers (academics), he'd have lost the trial for his client that day. And possibly never worked again. But I don't know this jury. And some of this will come down to their literacy with race and power. God help us.

    If you can find money to kill people, you can find money to help people. --Tony Benn

    by rhetoricus on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 10:46:25 PM PDT

    •  yes exactly... her testimony (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rhetoricus

      whether it will be taken as truth or not, it should be. it is in direct contrast to the 2 explanations by Zimmerman that were shown on video in court yesterday.  Of course, when Zimmerman was being videotaped the day after the murder, he had no idea of Rachel Jeantel and what she had heard on the telephone.  He was making up stuff because he knew the stand your ground law and how to get around it, by lying.  

      Loving me some Obama right about now... Economy is improving, he is moving forward, just like he said... and Michele Obama, oh my... Awesome!

      by titotitotito on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 04:41:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Very simple case (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WFBMM

    Starts and ends with the 911 calls Zimmerman made. A grown man stalks a kid, follows and runs after him after being told not to do so by the 911 dispatcher. A scuffle ensues and the kid ends up dead and now the aggressive stalker has been turned into the victim.
    "Oh I was defending myself".."The teenager armed himself with the sidewalk"..
    Zimmerman and his lawyers must think the whole world is stupid.
    Even Saddams sons in totalitarian Iraq needed more of a solid explanation after shooting someone.

    Unfortunately the case has turned political with democrats and republicans largely picking sides..In a 50/50 country its very difficult if not impossible to find a jury of 12 or 6 randomly selected people who would convict Zimmerman.
    So chances are he'll walk..So folks get ready for an acquittal and move on..

  •  George Zimmerman is a POS. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    May he reap what he's sown.

    Tears.

    People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people. --V for Vendetta

    by WFBMM on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 12:59:28 AM PDT

  •  Lots of good points (0+ / 0-)

    But I always assumed "cracker" was just a way of saying "white, bland".

  •  She was totally normal (0+ / 0-)

    I work with young Haitian "kids" every day. They do not shout; if they get angry (never at me) they get quieter and look down. She seemed totally normal and you could see she was intelligent but very, very uncomfortable.

  •  very well said (0+ / 0-)

    and soon they'll have us all back in slave cabins.

  •  There's racism everywhere & (0+ / 0-)

    it's deeply embedded even among people who don't think they're racist, or aren't part of the "powerful."

    That includes most of us.

  •  "I'm a cracker, you one too" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shigeru

    "The Atlanta Crackers" was the old white baseball team before the major leagues came.

    "Cracker" had and has a connotative register somewhere around "rube, unsophisticated." It always includes "white," but it originally had "working class" (as opposed to the rigid aristocracy that survived Reconstruction) in it.

    A non-black man who gets out of an SUV to follow you in the dark of the night is creepy. Indeed, any child would think the person is "a creep" (to wit: a pederast or a person with an unsolicited perverse sexual desire). So, all Trayvon did was identify, pretty accurately, that he was being followed by a creep who was not well dressed, polite, or sophisticated seeming.

    He was right, and so are you.

    Everyone's innocent of some crime.

    by The Geogre on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 09:51:37 AM PDT

  •  What I find so interesting (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shigeru

    is how the White Supremacists have erased the implicit criticism of white supremacy in the racialized (and heavily class-based) label "cracker".

    It's kind of funny to anyone who grew up in the Civil rights era South to see that come up as "evidence" of racism.

    Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

    by a gilas girl on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 10:47:32 AM PDT

    •  My recollection too. I.e. cracker was reserved for (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a gilas girl

      the poor white, trailer trash. The white elites were not called crackers.

      Being called a cracker does make me angry, but doesn't hurt my feelings. Who knows why. I really don't care as it is rarely used. Is it worse than honky or whitey? Who knows?

      "Oh, I am heartily tired of hearing about what Lee is going to do..... Go back to your command, and try to think what are we going to do ourselves, instead of what Lee is going to do." Grant

      by shigeru on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 11:21:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  there was even a baseball team... 3 teams actually (0+ / 0-)

      From 1901 right up to 1966, Atlanta's hometown pro baseball team was "The Atlanta Crackers."  Presumably, the name was not considered too insulting, since the team thrived for so many years and was in fact one of the most successful minor league teams anywhere in America.

      The first incarnation of the Crackers played in the AA Southern Association from 1901 to 1961. That team went out of business in 1961 along with the Southern Association. but a new Atlanta Crackers team joined the AAA International League that same year, and continued until 1966, when a Major League team with a problematic nickname of its own moved into town (the Braves.)  That AAA team is the predecessor of today's Gwinnett Braves (who play in a suburb of Atlanta.)

      The Southern Association was an all-white league, although ironically it was the Crackers who attempted to integrate it in 1954, with a black player named Nat Peeples.  He lasted only 2 games before being sent down to a A-level team in Jacksonville.  The reason the Southern Association eventually went out of business was because Major League Baseball teams were no longer willing to support segregated white-only farm teams.

      As in many other cities, African-American entrepreneurs established a Negro League team in Atlanta in the 1920s. As in many other cities, the new black team in town was named after an existing white team: hence, the oxymoronically named Atlanta Black Crackers.

      •  My grandfather used to talk about (0+ / 0-)

        the Atlanta Crackers all the time, (he was a huge baseball fan, and a pretty typical Southern racist man for his era), so I would often wince at the name, but he seemed completely oblivious, even proud.

        I had forgotten that bit of local history...

        Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

        by a gilas girl on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 11:52:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Facts are Facts (0+ / 0-)

    -
    My Background: As part of my collateral duties in the military, I was trained at the Naval Postgraduate School in mishap (Navy/USMC definition) investigation. That training included everything from securing a scene, interviewing/vetting witnesses, ascertaining causal factors, and preparing summary findings related to the mishap. I've also studied the law and been educated in sociology and psychology.

    It’s disturbing to see this become so divisive. It “should” simply be about looking (objectively) at the legally relevant "evidence & facts" of a case between two "individuals". Then, utilizing the totality of that information to come to a well reasoned, logical, conclusion. Unfortunately, the media (not all but enough-- Nancy Grace chief among them) have done the opposite, fostering people's emotionally based, inaccurate conclusions.

    Additionally, the combination of blatant demagoguery &/or brainless demonstrations, by the likes of Chris Mathews, Al Sharpton, Bill Maher, congressman, &/or entertainers wearing hoodies, is not only unprofessional and inappropriate, it is reckless of the consequences... which are greater racial divides in this country. All in the name of furthering careers via "ratings"...

    When looked at in totality, the case is actually relatively simple to put together (yes, seriously). This link lays out the timeline of events (as drawn from available, "legally relevant" evidence as well as pertinent law application). I'm appalled that some of these people "with" juris doctorates can actually speak so inaccurately about what IS or IS NOT legally relevant... It's like a modern day witch hunt or McCarthyism irt the inappropriate allegations against GZ.

    I'm not taking any "one" person's word on "anything". You have to take ALL the pieces of evidence and put them together like a jigsaw puzzle. You look at all "possibilities" and eliminate the least plausible (one by one). I'm not crazy enough to think I can actually make a huge difference with this link (I’m just an avg “Joe”) but if I did nothing to help people see through the media distortions I'd feel guilty.

    You never know which article posting may make contact with someone who can make difference correct? Therefore, this needs to be disseminated as widely as possible. If you agree, please help circulate via your social networks.

    Thanks again. Together, we can let the media know we don't appreciate their divisive spinning of such tragedies for the personal gain of viewer ratings…

    Here's the Zimmerman Timeline:
    http://theindependentmoderate.blogspot.com/...

    #TrayvonMartin #trial #TrayvonMartin #Zimmerman #ZimmermanFacts

    -------------
    If you're thinking: "This guy's crazy!"
    -Per the "Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator", I'm an INTP personality type which is described here:

    "The accumulated knowledge is the most valued asset of any INTP. Imagine an immensely complicated clockwork which is constantly absorbing, processing and generating all kinds of theories – this is how the INTP mind works. People with the INTP personality type possess the most logically precise mind of all personality types – they can easily notice even the tiniest discrepancies between two statements, no matter how much time would have passed in between. It is a bad idea to lie to an INTP. They may appear dreamy sometimes, but this is not because their mind is resting – quite the opposite."

    ‎#TrayvonMartin ‎#trial #TrayvonMartin ‎#Zimmerman ‎#ZimmermanFacts

    There's the Left view, there's the Right view. and then there's: The Objective and "Truly Independent", Correct View.

    by TheIndependentModerate on Fri Jul 05, 2013 at 08:59:37 AM PDT

  •  May we please (0+ / 0-)

    ...get an acknowledgement that by NO means are those making bigoted statements and demonstrating racist bias and prejudice represent anyone but themselves? They are not "white people" as a whole, and never were. They and they alone are responsible for their hatred and the shriveling rot it has inflicted on their hearts and souls and what passes for their minds.

    The generalizations being bandied about in this diary are not merely insulting and offensive, they are deeply and disturbingly divisive. Attacking people who would be your allies, organizing a circular firing squad, is the very definition of counterproductive.

    Please understand, a great many white people are actually on your side. Many of us have never lived in a world where racism was openly acceptable, and have always condemned bigotry and fight against it however possible. Many of us weren't born when the horrific crimes of history were committed. We grew up in a generation and time where, in public at least, equal rights were supported and racism condemned. And of the generation before us, many of them fought side by side with black America to win civil rights for our oppressed fellow citizens. Young whites were key allies in helping change happen in those dark decades, and my generation and younger voted for a black president in majority numbers.

    I get tired of saying it, but don't assume I'm your enemy because I'm a different skin color than you. I am in fact your ally, and will gladly join your struggle because I believe injustice for any is injustice for all.

    "Is there anybody listening? Is there anyone who sees what's going on? Read between the lines, criticize the words they're selling. Think for yourself, and feel the walls become sand beneath your feet." --Geoff Tate, Queensryche

    by DarthMeow504 on Fri Jul 05, 2013 at 07:51:16 PM PDT

Meteor Blades, claude, Grassroots Mom, RakDaddy, Ed in Montana, Mimikatz, Alfred E Newman, nota bene, Chi, itsbenj, grollen, dalemac, teacherken, Trendar, Pandora, mimi, ctami, just another vet, cotterperson, genethefiend, Vico, Troutfishing, rubyr, polecat, varro, Matilda, Caneel, hubcap, abbysomething, Morgana, tarminian, entlord, twott28, bronte17, CoolAqua, 88kathy, TracieLynn, sponson, amsterdam, whenwego, Ian S, sukeyna, shanikka, Himself, greenomanic, badlands, ornerydad, Chitown Charlie, FriendlyNeighbor, splashy, antirove, high uintas, aitchdee, wader, k9disc, Lilyvt, Texknight, NMRed, Oke, RLF, tomephil, kharma, psnyder, Dallasdoc, Miss Jones, MA Liberal, mnguitar, chantedor, Steven Payne, Sychotic1, RuralLiberal, samoashark, lcrp, kismet, nswalls, JayBat, OneCharmingBastard, zerelda, mungley, Steven D, TexasLefty, rambler american, Josiah Bartlett, Sassy, oortdust, sawgrass727, Brecht, vcmvo2, maybeeso in michigan, historys mysteries, greycat, freakofsociety, subtropolis, chimene, YucatanMan, skeptigal, Laurence Lewis, Lepanto, reflectionsv37, boofdah, PSzymeczek, SaraBeth, aaraujo, cspivey, Ice Blue, most peculiar mama, markdd, alabamaliberal, sunbro, brentut5, AnotherMassachusettsLiberal, Shotput8, FindingMyVoice, Joes Steven, sillia, Ekaterin, huttotex, Alan Arizona, fhcec, Jim P, begone, Mother Mags, Denny in Seattle, martini, K S LaVida, esquimaux, Nance, Debbie in ME, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, Kingsmeg, vigilant meerkat, cybersaur, tung sol, emeraldmaiden, cardboardurinal, raptavio, seefleur, Dvalkure, Audri, AoT, KenBee, rhetoricus, kck, blueoasis, MJ via Chicago, Rosaura, PapaChach, armadillo, el cid, middleagedhousewife, justiceputnam, onionjim, democracy is coming, CA Nana, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, fiddlingnero, RantNRaven, blueoregon, shaharazade, NancyWH, kml, Thinking Fella, old wobbly, timewarp, Habitat Vic, Cat Whisperer, Loudoun County Dem, camlbacker, devis1, Izzzy, aravir, puakev, glescagal, Blue State 68, la urracca, wildweasels, noofsh, Matt Z, dclawyer06, shesaid, newpioneer, HCKAD, Midwesterners, GMFORD, second gen, cyncynical, Librarianmom, leonard145b, Radhika, craiger, Counselor730, TomP, Empower Ink, JDWolverton, mconvente, left turn, also mom of 5, HappyinNM, GAS, ScottyUrb, OleHippieChick, mamamedusa, Sixty Something, elwior, Buckeye Nut Schell, jakebob, jamess, Lujane, TomFromNJ, pamelabrown, hwmnbn, dewley notid, NogodsnomastersMary, ashowboat, petulans, Keninoakland, Karl Rover, Mayfly, Diogenes2008, shortgirl, maxcat06, JBL55, maggiejean, Bule Betawi, multilee, rubyclaire, cybrestrike, greengemini, bobatkinson, Carol in San Antonio, janmtairy, earicicle, rbird, mkor7, CamillesDad1, DefendOurConstitution, lookit, virginwoolf, UnaSpenser, Mylies Voice, glitterlust, Denise Oliver Velez, drbcladd, kevinpdx, Kysen, IreGyre, stevenwag, moviemeister76, sfarkash, jfromga, schnecke21, citisven, Nannyberry, collardgreens, America Jones, Lefty Ladig, ruscle, cassandraX, smileycreek, coppercelt, confitesprit, FogCityJohn, flitedocnm, joanne gullion, awesumtenor, LaughingPlanet, NJpeach, vixenflem, SeattleTammy, Anima, eb23, klompendanser, Crabby Abbey, tubacat, lorla, mookins, Lost and Found, Simple, leftist vegetarian patriot, JoanMar, Nurse Jeckell, DoReMI, pixxer, Kristina40, Yasuragi, albrt, melfunction, Patate, DrTerwilliker, ericlewis0, indubitably, Belle Ame, Onomastic, Bluefin, Dretutz, Lost Left Coaster, Liberal Capitalist, Plox, spooks51, Tommye, slowbutsure, implicate order, vahana, donaurora, mikejay611, staredecisis, kiwiheart, mujr, page394, mrsgoo, marleycat, AgavePup, sethtriggs, midnight lurker, gof, SueM1121, tardis10, worldlotus, Fire bad tree pretty, whoknu, Square Knot, FreeWoman19, VTCC73, bakeneko, Dbug, blue aardvark, SteelerGrrl, jham710, jadt65, Regina in a Sears Kit House, Chitown Kev, Mentatmark, T100R, jaebone, No one gets out alive, YaNevaNo, Sister Inspired Revolver of Freedom, Istillhope, ridemybike, stormicats, clubbing guy, OldDragon, anodnhajo, Gay CA Democrat, leathersmith, Chrislove, teachered, IndieGuy, Eric Nelson, tb92, midgebaker, done lurking, a2nite, Deep Texan, HoofheartedBC, 2thanks, FloridaSNMOM, congenitalefty, CA ridebalanced, Horace Boothroyd III, This old man, Free Jazz at High Noon, reginahny, doroma, Buckeye54, jes2, lunachickie, cassandracarolina, james321, LoreleiHI, etherealfire, Glen The Plumber, wasatch, Robynhood too, Heavy Mettle, Jason Libsch, tn mountain girl, Blue Dream, nuclear winter solstice, Lily O Lady, Chaddiwicker, onceasgt, stalegranola, countwebb, Lurker in the Dark, argomd, Late Again, Praxical, Tim DeLaney, SanFernandoValleyMom, Nautical Knots, life is making tacos, Yo Bubba, alice kleeman, Jollie Ollie Orange, howabout, IndyinDelaware, BadKitties, peterfallow, xulon, ET3117, jplanner, chicklet, Jim Domenico, amparo fan, Politikator09, Grizzard, Catkin, oslyn7, WFBMM, Gardener in PA, nancyjones, richardvjohnson, dannyboy1, MarthaPeregrine, Rubedo, Laurie in Maryland, jbsoul, cwatts75

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site