Thinking more about Trayvon

As evidenced in these twitter comments about the Hunger Games, Trayvon's murder and several other recent news items, racism is alive and well in America. But I'm still concerned that another, and perhaps deeper issue, is getting buried. And that issue is that in some places in this country – many places – it's ok for a person to shoot someone who looks suspicious or acts suspicious. I am 99.9% sure that in many suburban areas around my town, a "goth" kid or someone with a lot of tattoos or piercings, would be seen as suspicious and would be at risk for being shot no matter the tone of their skin. We have GOT to attend to this issue of allowing ourselves to dehumanize another person so much so that we can justify killing them because WE have determined they "deserve" it. A white supremacist cannot kill a black man because he thinks he deserves it and I cannot condemn the white supremacist to death because I think he deserves it. I know the death penalty and gun ownership and use of lethal force in self defense are complicated issues and I will not attempt to make them appear simple. But I really hope we start up more national conversations about this. If our fight for justice stops at race, we're screwed.

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