Bob Owens

The saddest truth in politics is that people get the leaders they deserve

Suicide by culture

Written By: Bob - Mar• 28•12

If you follow the #TrayvonMartin hashtag on Twitter, you’ll learn that there is a lot of emotion, and very few people either know–or care–about the actual facts of the case. The dead teenager has become a symbol of cynics attempting to cash in on all the ginned up outrage, from tee shirt vendors to politicians, to the media, to professional racists.

What few–if any–are willing to address, is that the death of one man and the destruction of another man’s life may be as much the fault of a violent culture as much as it was the actions of the individuals involved.

No, I’m not talking about the gun culture or concealed carry in specific, as they are taught at the foundational level about restraint and situational awareness and avoiding potentially dangerous situations as much as possible.

I’m referring to a hip-hop culture that has spent the past 30 years glorifying gang-life, drug-use and dealing,  drive-bys, machismo, an inflated and undeserved demand for “respect” for simply existing, and violence as the solution to problems.

Look at Trayvon Martin’s timeline, and you’ll see a disrespectful, ignorant, violence-prone teen taught by his culture to value flash over substance, image over core values, immediate gratification, corrupted even further by a vile disrespect of women.

Just one week after Trayvon Martin was killed, and long before I heard of his name, I was approached by neighborhood watch volunteers and concerned neighbors. I was sitting in my car, unshaven and wearing a hooded sweatshirt. I had done nothing illegal, immoral or unethical. My daughter was selling Girl Scout cookies door to door, but because of the long drive-ways, she wasn’t often in view. Neighbors simply saw a man whom they didn’t recognize pulling off the the size of the road, sitting for a number of minutes, and then moving a little further up the street.  Suspicious? You betcha.

One homeowner came out, walked up to me point blank, and asked what I was doing. When I told him, he smiled and gave me a “been there, done that,” and went back inside. A half-hour or so later, a SUV pulled up and asked if I needed help finding someone or something. That driver, too, carried out a rational conversation with me, and we both went about our days.

Apparently talking wasn’t on Trayvon Martin’s mind. We know he had words with George Zimmerman, and we don’t know what either man said, but Zimmerman’s account, the physical evidence, and an eyewitnesses account that states Zimmerman was on the ground with the younger, stronger Martin pounding his head into the pavement indicates that like so many in this culture of violence, Trayvon Martin responded to the perceived slight of a neighborhood watch volunteer following him with his fists, and allegedly progressed from assault to assault with a deadly weapon, which caused George Zimmerman to fear for his life, draw his weapon, and fire one shot.

Trayvon Martin’s death wasn’t murder. It was suicide by culture, one of thousands of black men killed every year in violent encounters egged on by a culture awash in ignorance and violence.

If blacks want justice, they need to start by looking in a mirror at the culture they’ve created and take responsibility for their actions. They killed Trayvon Martin by teaching him to answer problems with his fists. George Zimmerman was if accounts can be believed, merely collateral damage.

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7 Comments

  1. emdfl says:

    Article today about a (black)woman in Tampa who just shot a black teenager in her store. Kid WHO SHE KNEW came in to rob her after coming in earlier to buy something.
    Waitng for the RWPPs to show up in front of her shop for a boycott and rally.

  2. LCB says:

    I still can’t help feeling that Zimmerman is at fault. My CW training taught me to never, ever knowingly walk in to a situation where I might have to use my gun. Zimmerman saw who he thought was suspicious on a dark, rainy night in a neighborhood plagued by theft. Only an idiot would not realize the potential for trouble.
    He called the police. His DUTY as a watch captain was done. As soon as he left his car to follow Martin (and no, I don’t believe he left his car to check the address) he created a potential situation where he may have had to use his gun. It may not be law, but morally, Zimmerman started the whole chain of events.
    Not saying Martin is an angel; not saying he doesn’t bear some of the responsibility for what happened by striking out. But if Zimmerman had waited for the police…this, whatever “this” turns out to be, wouldn’t have happened.

    • Bob says:

      I happen to agree with you.

    • jorgen says:

      Zimmerman saw who he thought was suspicious on a dark, rainy night in a neighborhood plagued by theft.

      And that makes him a hero. Anyway, as Bob’s article says: “a disrespectful, ignorant, violence-prone teen taught by his culture to value flash over substance,…” was killed – not a big loss to society so good riddance.

  3. Brian Guy says:

    Kind of disturbing…What do you make of this? Sorry it’s off-topic.

    http://www.bostonreview.net/BR37.2/bill_ayers_tucker_carlson_andrew_breitbart_dinner.php

  4. JMJinTX says:

    Mr. Owens I must challenge this statement:

    “Look at Trayvon Martin’s timeline, and you’ll see a disrespectful, ignorant, violence-prone teen taught by his culture to value flash over substance, image over core values, immediate gratification, corrupted even further by a vile disrespect of women”

    Exactly WHAT timeline are you referring to??? What violence was in his timeline? What “image”…what “immediate gratification” what disrespect? To my knowledge NO ONE has
    come out and said he was disrespectful, but many have said he WAS a respectful kid, teachers, parents of kids he worked with, etc.

    In your not-quite so similar account “One homeowner came out, walked up to me point blank, and asked what I was doing.”

    BIG difference. You saw the homeowner come out of his home. Trayvon saw a guy turn his SUV around and start following him. And if we are going to allow stereotypes to cloud our judgement, then one MUST consider the fact that Zimmerman has a shaved head. Might that cause some alarm for a young black male?

    As for lacerations or not – first I had not seen the ABC video, I saw raw footage from some crime site. I see a dark mark, but I also see one along the top of his head at different angles, and considering that he has a shaved head with partial growth, I don’t see anything that unusual. I did notice the cop ‘observing’ his head, but NOT until another cop came out, and it appeared all three cops engaged in some discussion, THEN the cop looked at the back of his head (after he had already checked Zimmerman’s back) so my own opinion that he did not appear to be very banged up stays, especially since even with LOW resolution, with a ‘broken nose’ I would have expected to see some blood, and again, even with low res, I would expect to see some abrasions if he really had his head ‘repeatedly’ pounded into concrete, but that is the evidence which should be presented in a court of law, and that should have been first priority for the prosecutor, not something begged for by grieving parents and later latched onto by media whores since the parents received no responses.

  5. Jose Garcia says:

    Agree 100%. Growing up in NYC in, in the late ’70s early 80′s when “rap” was first coming out, I watched young kids work at the local “White Castle” by day and deal drugs by night to pay for the $100/per hour spot at a recording studio to make a demo of their “work.” The two, “rap/hip-hop” and drugs are so intertwined that it is impossible to separate.