Even to a person as cynical and jaded as I have become about American politics, the brouhaha around the Trayvon Martin shooting is rather shocking. Usually, in past instances of even the most determined attempts to inflame racial hatred, there’s been at least a fig leaf of plausible deniability over the manipulation. Not this time. Not with MSNBC getting caught editing its presentation of the 911 tape to make it sound like the shooter uttered a racial slur. Not with Trayvon Martin’s photo obviously photoshopped to make him look younger, less threatening, and (ironically) more white.
I’m not going to utter or argue for a conclusion about whether or not Zimmerman shot in self-defense. We don’t know that. Perhaps he was, in fact, motivated by race hatred. The facts of the shooting will have to come clearer before that can be judged. We have more than enough facts, though, to observe and indict the operation of the racial-grievance factory, and to point a finger squarely at those who are dishonestly battening on Trayvon Martin’s death.
The progress of civil rights in the U.S. can be measured by the extent to which real racial outrages have been displaced by trumped-up fake ones. The year I was born, in 1957, segregation was still a cruel and oppressive fact in the American South; thirty years later, in 1987, Tawana Brawley’s false rape accusations would certainly not have had to be pimped to the max by Al Sharpton if he’d had any true ones to work with.
With the Trayvon Martin shooting the fakery has reached dizzying heights. Beginning with the fact that a hispanic man shoots a black and we are immediately urged to see this as evidence of pervasive evil and prejudice in a racial group of “whites” which, according to their IDs, neither man thought he belonged to.
Personally, I think the distinction between “white” and “hispanic” is a rather silly one to be insisting on in 2012, especially for anybody named “George Zimmerman”. But I’m not him – apparently George thought his hispanicity/non-whiteness was important enough to put on his documents. The racial-grievance industry, which thrives on assigning each of us to a place in an ever-more-ramified hierarchy of “victim” and “oppressor” groups, has no excuse in its own terms of reference for ignoring this.
And is anyone but me noticing the irony of whitening Trayvon Martin in his hoodie photograph? We’ll pass over quickly the blatant flim-flam of publishing five-year-old photographs that make him look like a chubby-cheeked kid rather than the sullen, angry teenage gangbanger (Twitter handle “NO_LIMIT_NIGGA”) in the more current ones. But the first time I saw the photoshopped version of the “hoodie” photograph, my instant thought was “My Goddess – they’ve Michael-Jacksonized him!”
That’s right, in covering a story that was, for them, ostensibly all about race, the mainstream media more than half bleached out Trayvon Martin’s blackness. To make him seem less threatening and more sympathetic. Thereby, implicitly, confirming and validating the exact stereotype of “black = danger” about which we are all being lectured!
But such thoughtless gaslighting should not surprise us. Because even supposing that Zimmerman pulled the trigger for racial reasons (which isn’t established), the media-approved post-shooting spin is only pretending to be about racial justice. And the pretense is a thin one. What’s actually going on is a load of grunting and posturing as stylized and disconnected from reality as a Kabuki drama, and directed to ends that had nothing to do with Trayvon Martin’s life or death. Let’s review some of the actual axes being ground here:
First on the scene to abuse Trayvon’s corpse were the jackals from the “Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence”, who have been fighting an increasingly desperate rear-guard action against civil-rights progress ever since the Heller ruling in 2008 reaffirmed the Second Amendment as an individual right. Their goal was to throw as much mud as possible at Florida’s recently-passed “stand your ground” law in hopes that some of it would stick, and never mind that it would probably be irrelevant to Zimmerman’s defense if he were charged.
But the gun-grabbers were quickly jostled aside by the usual gang of race hustlers, Al Sharpton being the most obvious but far from the only example. The last thing the race hustlers want is “racial justice”; their whole loathsome con depends on guilt-tripping Whitey, inflaming blacks, and profiting as both sides bleed. With actual racism as near dead as it is in the U.S., their game depends on being able to regularly construct white-on-black “injustice” out of nothing, and if that means editing George Zimmerman into a “white” racist, they’ll do it.
The race hustlers are small-time, though, compared to the White House, the Democratic National Committee, and the mainstream press. When Barack Obama said he though that Trayvon Martin looked like the son he doesn’t have, this had everything to do with his weak position going into the 2012 presidential elections. At all cost blacks must be mobilized to vote and everybody given a gaudy distraction from $5 gas prices, “green energy” cronyism, and the limping wreckage of the administration’s economic policy.
If this means Trayvon Martin has to be whitewashed and George Zimmerman gets a public lynching, then the mainstream press is showing itself eager to comply, supplying all the photoshopping and fake-but-accurate 911 audio the DNC could actually want. The actual facts of the case, and the actual meaning of Trayvon Martin’s death? Irrelevant. And, of course, the fact that George Zimmerman was a registered Democrat goes down the memory hole.