“My main message is to the parents of Trayvon Martin. You know, if I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.” – Barack Obama
That’s Barack Obama’s main message to the parents of the boy who was shot and killed last week by a former neighborhood watch leader? George Zimmerman, the watch leader, has claimed self-defense in the shooting, although the police have not finished investigating his claim. Repeatedly, the local police authorities have said that they are investigating what exactly happened; and at first glance, there may be some potential holes to the former watch leader’s story. In the end, the story will unfold and more will be revealed.
So the most powerful man in the world’s “Main Message” to these grieving parents is that HIS son, if he had one, would look like theirs. In twenty-one words, the President of the United States interjected himself into a state criminal investigation with a racial statement, as influential civil rights organizers began to incite crowds into a frenzy over perceived injustices.
As if sensing an opportunity, Barack Obama, who was hailed as “The Great Uniter” in 2008, willfully took the time to subtly play the race card. Not only had his DOJ, led by Eric Holder, began reviewing the case almost immediately; but the President felt it was necessary to comment at a completely unrelated press conference. His choice of words which included referencing looks and his own imaginary son has only shown that our President clearly sees events through the prism of race. If that seems too much of a stretch, then imagine George Bush saying the same exact comment if Trayvon had been white. At the minimum, one could argue it was a poor choice of words at a time when claims of racism are being fueled. All Obama had to do, if anything at all, was offer his condolences to the family and express confidence that the authorities would thoroughly investigate.
It could have been that simple. Instead, the President, even if unintentionally, invoked race and fanned the flames in Florida. If not as generous as the previous statement, one cannot help but wonder why the President did not comment on and why the DOJ didn’t investigate Melissa Coon’s son in Kansas City, MO.
While walking down the street several blocks from her house, Ms. Coon’s 13-year old son was jumped by two teenagers who doused him in gasoline and then set him on fire. As they began to douse him, they said, “This is what you deserve. You get what you deserve, white boy.” Yes, Ms. Coon’s son was white and the attackers were two black teenagers. Ms. Coon’s son received burns to the face and body and was rushed to the local emergency room. Fortunately, he survived the attack and still is alive today. The two teenagers have never been caught and almost not a word was ever mentioned by anyone in the mainstream media. While the Florida case resulted in a death, it is clear that this attack in Kansas City was definitely a hate crime and there is little ambiguity to details of the event.
Yet, no one is holding their breath for any attention over a crime against a white 13 year-old in the Midwest, as there is no political advantage for Obama or the mainstream media in acknowledging this particular event. The political calculations made by Obama clearly dictate a need to bring excitement to the African-American vote, as their enthusiasm for the President has been shown lacking.
Meanwhile, as Mr. Zimmerman remains in hiding for his safety, the selective intrusions and snubs from this Administration based on race become more obvious day-after-day, as the President takes each opportunity to play the politics of division.