The Zimmerman Verdict: Three Uneasy Pieces

George Zimmerman Proclaimed Honorary White Man

SANFORD, FL — The Volunteer Fire Department and the local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution have united across class lines to declare George Zimmerman, recently acquitted of murdering African-American youth Trayvon Martin, an “Honorary White Dude.”  Mr. Zimmerman, whose driver’s license lists him as Hispanic, was lauded today in a ceremony at Sanford’s City Hall.

Biff Ruttler, fireman and beloved character actor on local TV pest-control commercials, gave the award presentation speech.

“George was able to use his beady little eyes to look past his brown pigmentation and feel the patriotic emotion that unites all true Americans,” said Mr. Ruttler.  “Terror.  A deep, abiding terror of what black people, especially black men, could justifiably do to us, based on what we’ve done to them.  That Skittles-wielding punk would have grown up to be one more scary black guy if George hadn’t stopped him.  George Zimmerman became an American the day he shot that kid.”

Although prejudice against people of color has played a role in United States history, studies have shown that 67.9% of white Americans hold a particular fear of African Americans, and are more afraid of encountering African-American males on the street than of getting HIV, dying in a nuclear war, or being tortured to death by a white psychopath.

Most people who attended the ceremony admitted that they would normally shun Mr. Zimmerman on the street for being a “person of non-Bubba descent” or PNBD.  Indeed, it turned out that Mr. Zimmerman had not been invited to his own ceremony — a “social gaffe” indicating that ethnic barriers can take time to disappear.  But the fact that an adult PNBD shot to death a seventeen-year-old, unarmed African-American, and then beat a second-degree murder charge by arguing self-defense, has “liberalized” many in the conservative white establishment, who say they have changed their feelings about Hispanics.  At least those Hispanics with surnames like Zimmerman.

“It’s not so much who you are, racially,” said Sally Belvedere, mother and high school nutritionist, at the event.  “It’s who you shoot.  What made me rethink my own racism toward Mr. Zimmerman is that he showed no remorse in court.  You know, I think honoring people like George as white dudes is the modernizing tack we in the Republican Party need to take if we want to beat Hillary.”

Privileges of being Honorary White Dude include a 40% discount at Banana Republic and a year’s pass to a local tanning salon.  Another perk is the right not to be called a “dirty immigrant” upon presentation of the Honorary White Dude card.  This card must be carried at all times, along with a free, state-issued gun.

Zimmerman Jury: Putting the “Hood” Back in “Sisterhood”

A woman on the six-woman Zimmerman jury, known only as Juror H88, has publicly criticized Juror B37, who gave an interview recently to CNN.  In that interview, Juror B37, seated in shadow to avoid identification, stated that George Zimmerman “had good in his heart” and was “justified” in shooting Trayvon Martin.

Juror H88 then gave an interview to Fox News, saying that, although Mr. Martin’s killing was justified, her colleague missed the point: White women uniting to acquit Mr. Zimmerman was a “wake-up call” to the nation to implement “equal opportunity racism” as a major crime deterrent.

“Together, we said NO to violent, unarmed thugs in our neighborhood,” declared Juror H88.  “And those thugs wear some real ugly hoodies, honey.  Give me one a them pointy white sheets with a couple of eyeholes cut out, any day.”

Juror H88 spoke, seated in shadow, so that her pointy white sheet with the eyeholes cut out could not be seen.

“No more will our menfolk objectify us as defenseless, lily-white magnolias,” Juror H88 continued.  “We women demand the right to stand our own ground.  We seek to uphold the proud tradition of criminalizing, beating, mutilating, and lynching black people.  But in more feminine, institutional ways, like through the courts and the penal system.”

Questioned why she did not mention the sixth, Latina, juror, H88 replied, “Huh?  I don’t remember seeing her.  When we say ‘women,’ honey, we mean white women.  Don’t you know anything about the women’s movement?”

Asked if, by claiming equal rights with men, she calls herself a feminist, Juror H88 paused.  “Oh, no,” she replied in a shocked voice.  “No, sir.  Being a feminist means that you are for abortion.  Abortion means the tragic and unnecessary killing of an innocent child.  I could never condone that.  That would be murder.”

Stand Your Ground: Whites Only

We interrupt these satires for a true story that may seem satirical.  In 2010 Marissa Alexander, an African-American woman, fired some shots into the ceiling of her Florida home.  She did this to ward off another beating by her estranged husband, from whom she held an order of protection.  The shots killed or injured no one, but may have stopped her from being killed.

Believing she had done no wrong, Ms. Alexander rejected a plea bargain for a three-year prison sentence, which would have meant losing custody of her younger daughter, only nine days old at the time of the incident.  She opted to go to court to defend her action, using the same Stand Your Ground law invoked at George Zimmerman’s trial.  Unlike Mr. Zimmerman, Marissa Alexander lost her case.  In May 2012 she was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Getting Marissa Alexander out could never make up for Trayvon Martin’s death.  But it might help dismantle the system that killed him:

Susie Day is a writer.

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