We walk through life hoping for a higher ground. Hoping for clarity amidst the confusion. Hoping for protection for the unprotected. When a bullet enters the chamber of the heart of a seventeen-year-old young man, his life ends. Over. Breathing ceases. No high school prom. No high school graduation. No first day of college. No college graduation. No wedding. No honeymoon. No first child. No proud dad moments. No weekly paychecks. No vacations. No growing old. No retirement party. No rocking chairs. No rocking chairs. No rocking chairs.
Trayvon Martin is dead. And George Zimmerman is on trial for murdering him. And that trial begins in thirteen days. Fact.
On a rainy Sunday evening in Sanford, Florida back in February of 2012, one bullet was shot from a 9mm semi-automatic handgun. a gun that belonged to George Zimmerman. a trigger that was pulled by George Zimmerman. With no DNA evidence found whatsoever of Trayvon’s on this gun, there is no dispute over who shot who. When the police arrived they found a can of ice tea and a bag of skittles next to the lifeless body of Trayvon. That is what he had on him when a bullet tore a hole through his hooded sweatshirt on one side and left another one on the other. A 9mm handgun vs. a can of ice tea and a bag of skittles. Armed vs. unarmed. Bullets in the hood.
In the past few days, the crowd-sourced funded legal team of George Zimmerman did everything they could to make you forget about the deadly, drizzly night in Sanford, Florida. Distractions were their weapon of choice. Dump information about Trayvon’s past that everyone knew would not be allowed in court. Many members of the media mistook their leaking of photos and text messages as evidence, which led to irresponsible headlines printed in black and white. Paint Trayvon as a “thug” and then maybe you would question whether or not he deserved to get a bullet in his chest. Or better yet, maybe potential jurors would walk into the jury box with a guilty image of Trayvon before opening arguments ever began. Strategy of desperation. Confusion. A smear campaign.
This morning we woke up and were brought back to reality when the presiding judge in the case ruled that nothing the defense leaked on Friday would be admissible in the murder trial of George Zimmerman. None of it. Everything George Zimmerman’s defense threw into the air last week to paint Trayvon as a “thug” did not stick at all. Denied. Irrelevant to the trial.
What is relevant to the murder trial of George Zimmerman is what happened during the seven minutes that two strangers encountered each other on a small street in Sanford that ended with a bullet shot through the heart of Trayvon Martin. That is what this trial should focus on and that is why George Zimmerman is the one who is on trial, because he did the shooting. The perpetrator. The assailant. The man who killed an unarmed teenager. Let us not be distracted by tactics of paid-lawyers who want you to forget the truth.
So, we must move over the next thirteen days with great focus and energy that shakes off the distractions and the confusion. We must raise our voices louder than ever before with one, unified rallying cry that screams for justice for Trayvon. We must wear our hoodies in the summertime heat in solidarity with every black and brown male misunderstood who is threatened by violence for walking through any community in America. Let us continue the work that we have begun, for we are not there yet. And when we reach that moment of clarity, we will know it to be true, as justice will ring for brother Trayvon so loud that even in heaven it will be heard.
Michael Skolnik is the Editor-In-Chief of GlobalGrind.com and the political director to Russell Simmons. Prior to this, Michael was an award-winning filmmaker. Follow him on twitter @MichaelSkolnik