Last night I held my breath...

I felt the sharp intake of breath when the verdict was read.  I wasn't part of the jury, I didn't hear all the information they heard.  I have no idea what all they knew.  I cannot fathom how hard it was to be a juror in that case. I can't imagine that it was an easy decision or that it was taken casually.  I can't imagine that doing their civic duty didn't change those six women forever.

My feelings are so mixed. I do not know how it became a national media circus and that is what it is. As I listen to the news this morning, I am wishing they would simply stop.  A young man is dead.  Another man's life is altered forever. Six women, had to make a decision that will forever be part of their lives.  No one won, everyone lost.

Yes, he was 17, but was he the cute cherub the media kept showing us when they displayed only the picture of the 12 year old little boy?  Or was he more like your typical teen?  I have seen other pictures of him, that aren't nearly as adorable (shirtless, middle finger up, glaring at the camera - in that standard young adult showing the world how tough they are pose).  Why didn't the media pick that picture?

And there is a grown man whose life will never be the same.  Ironically the media only chose stoic pictures of him to show us, to portray a cold person, where is the picture of him with a smile or looking carefree?

It's amazing how the arm chair attorney's, jurors, judges and media can sit there and second guess.  No one has those facts.  None of us will truly know what happened that night.

If the young man was like so many that I meet on a daily basis, the media did the country a huge injustice.  They are sweet, kind, courteous and caring around their mama, daddy and family, but when with their friends or solo a totally different person emerges.

In fact I think the media and so many others did this country a huge injustice. 

I never really understood how a tragic incident was being manipulated into a nationwide display of right and wrong.  Everyday hundreds of people young and old are killed. Black, White, Hispanic, Asian, Indian, Middle Eastern... so many... and many of those deaths involve young people.  Why are those not highlighted?

We definitely have a problem in this country, people don't value life, people bully and harm others to get their own way or simply for the fun of it.  And if it goes horribly wrong, it isn't their fault it is always the other person's fault.  

We have a problem with responsibility in this country. Listening to the news, talking gun laws, it wouldn't have happened if they were stronger, etc (wanna see that one proven wrong - check out the statistics in Chicago).  It can't be that we aren't educating any longer can it?  I played with toy guns when I was little, I had cap guns, I had water guns.  At no point did it occur to me to shoot a person with a real gun.  I was taught by my parents and family to value life and not to harm others.  I was taught right from wrong.  It had nothing to do with my "gun". Now they are teaching children that it is the gun's fault.  No it isn't.  That is a tool, it is the person behind the gun that has to make a choice.

We have a problem with race in this country.  We are all American's.  It doesn't matter what color the wrapping is, we are one people.  And sadly too many people want to break everything down to race. It seems designed to keep us separate. When you hear a news story, it always starts with "a young black man", "a white woman", "________ (fill in the blank) man, woman, child"... Would this incredibly sad and heart-wrenching story ever have made national attention if it had said "a young man was shot tonight in apparent self-defense". 

No, I don't believe it would.  There are similar crimes every day in neighborhoods in the cities near me.  Just about a month ago, in one week there were 15 people shot, some died, in 5 or 6 separate instances.  There were youngsters, there were older adults involved, and there was no media circus.   Why was that?  Did it not further the hatred agenda that they were all the same race?  News bulletin, we are all the same race... the Human Race!

I can understand how it happened.  I have seen young people trying to be tough, I have seen other people refuse to be bullied any more.

My heart breaks for Trayvon Martin's parents, family and community.  I am sorry that they didn't get the resolution they wanted.  I would think for those 6 women to make the decision they did, they must have known more than we did. 

I am equally sad for George Zimmerman, he took a life, intentional or not.  That is something that he will have to live with forever.  I didn't see any look of joy on his face when the verdict was read.  He looked tired and apprehensive. 

And I am incredibly sad for all those people out there rallying to get the DOJ involved.  Our legal system did what it should do.  It looked at the facts presented to it and made a fair and reasoned decision.  Never is everyone happy with the outcome of a trial.  Never will both sides be happy. 

But before you change the laws, before you demand a different outcome, stop... think... Someday, you might be George Zimmerman, some day there might be a Trayvon Martin in your life, someday you may need those very laws to see the whole story, not bits and pieces.  A law that allows for fair and reasonable thought to prevail, not that fits what the mob mentality wants.  Lady Justice is blind folded for a reason...

I started breathing this morning when I heard the news.  There weren't horrid riots.  Common sense might be prevailing.  We won't always like the outcomes, it's how we handle our feelings that make us better human beings. 


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