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Emmett Till, Rodney King, Trayvon Martin — We hardly knew you!

This important article

Excerpted from 

An American Mourning: A Remembrance of Emmett Till, Rodney King And Trayvon Martin

by MAX S. GORDON on AUGUST 28, 2012

(For those who still wonder why the stories of Emmett Till, Rodney King and Trayvon Martin are so importnt and related, this is a critical read… Susan)

Emmett, your death was not in vain. Because of what happened to you, the world stopped on its axis for a moment, and black and white people in America and all over the world mourned and shared a mother’s grief.  And whether what happened in the store that day was a misunderstanding, or a prank, or teenage insouciance, it was an act of resistance.  I believe you were fiercely independent, theatrical and bold, and that those men saw something in you that refused to cast your eyes down, to bow.  Your act of resistance, like Rosa Parks’, was heroic, and so they smashed you, gouging your eyes from their sockets, because you dared look into theirs.

The day will soon come when we will be glued to our televisions, watching the trial of George Zimmerman, who might not be in jail at all if it had been up to some members of law enforcement in his state.  Trayvon Martin’s parents, like your mother, have been accused of fueling racial tensions, of making a big deal over nothing, as they fight for his memory and defend the innocence of their son. When the trial ends, will then see if anyone really mourns your death, Emmett, if we have truly learned from our past. I have a sneaking suspicion we haven’t learned a goddamn thing. I fear for our country if this man is acquitted.  And yet cynicism is an insult to your memory, and the memory of your mother, and so we wait for justice to be served.”