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My son knows he could be Trayvon
Drew Oglesby and his best friend, Slater.
March 20th, 2012
01:22 PM ET

My son knows he could be Trayvon

Editor's Note: Christy Oglesby is the quality assurance manager for CNN/U.S.  She lives in Atlanta with her 13-year old son, Drew.  She wrote this in 2012 when the U.S. Justice Department decided to investigate Trayvon Martin’s death. We're resurfacing this piece in light of  a verdict in the George Zimmerman case. Listen to a CNN Radio interview with Oglesby and her friend, Sandra Bemis, whose son is pictured above.

By Christy Oglesby, CNN

(CNN) - I spend a lot of time gasping. I’m the mother of a boy, a testosterone-poisoned boy. Whether it’s rock climbing or four-story tall cliffs that beg him to jump to the sea, my son just isn’t interested in activities that don’t require me to sign a waiver promising not to sue someone.

I spend a lot of time praying. I have to. My son is black. His race gives me much more to fear than his fearlessness. Today, people are learning that the U.S. Justice Department will investigate Trayvon Martin’s death. That’s the black Florida teenager who was killed by a neighborhood watchman last month.

Trayvon didn’t have a gun. He was just walking home from a convenience store to the home of his dad's fiancee. The neighborhood watch captain said Trayvon looked “suspicious.” George Zimmerman said he shot Trayvon in self defense. I’ve worried about my Drew dying like that since a few days after giving birth to him 13 years ago.

It’s tough finding the balance between encouraging a black boy to storm the world with confidence and at the same time to fear for his life. But that’s what I must do. I know that at this very moment some have just sucked their teeth in disgusted disbelief and decided that I’m exaggerating. I wish that I was. I’m not. If I were, Trayvon would be alive.

There are too many things, big and small, that indicate the world hasn’t changed enough since Emmett Till died in 1955. There’s James Craig Anderson, a black man in Mississippi. A video camera captured white teens running him over in a truck on June 26, 2011 after one of them allegedly said he wanted to “F- with a n-–.”  There’s Sean Bell. There’s Trayvon. And there’s my son.

Christy Oglesby and her son, Drew.

Drew was only 3 when I got confirmation that being black could be the death of him. We were waiting for a connecting flight in a Tennessee airport. Drew was on the floor with his Leap Pad, a small computerized storyteller that developed early reading skills. He had on a navy and white seersucker romper with exquisite smocked trains on his chest. His navy Stride Rite leather sandals didn’t have a scuff on them, and the five-day-old haircut still looked fresh. He was the personification of perfection… at least to me.

A little white girl who looked about 2 and a half trotted over and plopped down on the floor next to him. Drew was just about to slide half of the toy onto her lap so they could “read” together when her older sister charged over. I’m guessing she was 6.  “Come back here!” she yelled. As she pulled her sister up off the floor by the arm, she explained loudly, “Don’t play with him! He’s dirty and dangerous!”  My child was neither. It didn’t matter. He’s black. For some people, that’s synonymous with “threat.” If that weren’t true, Trayvon would be alive.

I’ve repeated the details of that incident to my son several times in the past ten years. I’m convinced that his very life depends on knowing that story even if he can’t remember it. I hadn’t told my son the “airport story” since Cambridge cops arrested Skip Gates. I had to remind my son that the right neighborhood and the Yale degree he hopes to earn won’t be enough to protect him. Trayvon’s death forces me to revisit what happened when he tried to read to that little white girl.

Maybe I shouldn’t keep reminding Drew about the risks that come with being black and male in America. It’s just the best that I can do under the circumstances. That story is a part of the “tool kit” I’ve cobbled together to help him stay alive. It’s as important as my “proverbs.” That’s what my son calls my pithy reminders of how he should dress, act, speak and respond to authority. He’s committed most of them to memory.

“Ann is a woman, not a conjunction.” “Make inside voice your choice.” “Disobedience is dangerous.” And of course, “You must always look like a prospect, not a suspect.” The latter one shakes my core.  Drew and Trayvon have a similar look. Their coloring, eyebrows, smile, face shape and hair cuts are just too eerily similar for me. And I see that looking decent doesn’t trump being black. If it did, Trayvon would be alive.

Today I read about Trayvon trying his best not to run when he thought Zimmerman was hounding him. A friend says she was on the phone with Trayvon before he died, and that’s the account she gives. I don’t know Trayvon’s momma. But it seems she likely had the same proverb for her son that I had for mine. “Never run in a neighborhood.”

My son broke that rule when he was 7. He was Scouting for Food with the Cub Scouts on a service project in Buckhead, a posh McMansion neighborhood in Atlanta. Before I could stop him, he was running across the lawn of a mansion with the other little boys in blue uniforms. My scream stopped him in his tracks. I wasn’t so scared about him running just then. I was terrified that he’d forgotten the rules. I was terrified that he’d be with his white friends eight years from then and think he could run.

My ex-husband is 6 feet 2 inches. Drew’s half-brother is 6 feet 4 inches. My child’s only 12 and already 5 feet 5 inches. He’s black. He’s male. He’s going to be big. That’s just too much for my heart to handle. We had the talk again. “I know. I know, mom. I can’t run because I’m black.” I know America is the land of liberty, but my child has to understand he’s just free-ish.

Thankfully, I have a few more years before Drew begins to drive. I don’t want him to become another Troy Lawrence Jr. He’s a young, black, honor roll student from my hometown. Jefferson Parish deputies stopped him for speeding several years ago. Within the hour, his face was swollen, black and blue. Just about the time I begin teaching Drew how to parallel park, I’ll have to explain how to respond to a traffic stop. I’ll add Troy’s story to the tool kit.

Drew’s not bowed by fear at all. When he was 8, I told him that he needed to choose the scripture that would guide his life. My daredevil boy chose Joshua 1:9 - "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

He’s diligent about heeding my proverbs and exercising self-control. He knows that his manners, diction, hair style, clothing choices and education will help curtail some assumptions about him, but not all. He knows that he could be Trayvon. He’s still shocked that Zimmerman is not in jail.

In spite of my fears, I see reasons to be hopeful. I caught a beautiful glimpse just this weekend. My son’s Boy Scout troop camped on a family’s farm, and the moms had shunned nature for the comforts of the main house on the property. Through a kitchen window, I saw my son walking up the hill toward the house with a boy who has been his buddy since kindergarten. They share a secret handshake. Like so many other times in their lives, they had thrown an arm across the other’s shoulder, and there wasn’t enough space between their torsos to slide a blade of grass.

The genuine affection between long-time friends was evident. I don’t know what they were talking about, but they looked happy. They both looked free. I knew Drew didn’t see a white face, and his partner didn’t see a threat. Each saw a friend. That didn’t make me less scared for my son. I won’t stop warning him of risks. I’ll just make sure that moment with his buddy makes it into the tool kit.

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Filed under: Black in America • Discrimination • Ethnicity • Gender • Race • What we think
soundoff (1,447 Responses)
  1. Scott

    testosterone is not a poison... CNN... could you get people who aren't openly bigoted to write your articles.

    March 21, 2012 at 10:31 am | Report abuse |
  2. davenport

    I got a similar instruction from my mother and father when I was growing up as well. "Remember that your a Black man in America" I can hear her voice. You don't have to like or accept this woman's way of protecting her son, but its a fact of life

    March 21, 2012 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
    • Ashy

      ... and I can remember my parents. Remember you are a white boy in school, you have to get better grades than the black kid to get in the same school because of affirmative action.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
      • David

        And I remember my parents saying: Remember, you are an Asian person. You have to work harder and get better grades than a white person to get into the same school and get the same considerations.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
      • NO JUSTICE IN AMERICA

        @Ashley

        I know you're lying! I do not believe for a minute that your parents said to you you have to get better grades than the black kids because of affirmative action! Let's face it, its bigots like you who supported jim crow and were responsible for slavery in America! This country would be a whole lot better off without you rightwing trailer trash confederate racists!

        March 21, 2012 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
      • drknyt1

        But I bet that your parents never once hinted that you could be feared and killed because you were white. Get a clue.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
  3. Val

    Why are people making this out to be race killing ? The guy did not know if he were Black , Green,or Purple.It was dark and he was wearing a hood.We are dealing with a Wannabe cop.He had no business with a gun nor taking the situation in his own hands.But because he felt like he had the authority, he put himself into a situation that he could not handle.He is guilty for what he did but in no way do I believe it was a race issue. We are hurting ourselves by promoting it that way.Be smart people and do not make this something that it is not.We are all brothers and sisters in this lifetime.

    March 21, 2012 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      I feel like our country is doomed. Too much hate, too many guns. It feels like there is something just functionally wrong with America. Maybe it's time for another country to become the world leader, I think we are failing.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Just My Opinion

      I think this killing was definitly about race.. Do I think this man would have followed a white kids this way, no. One thing for sure, this whole incident is sad.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
    • Tiffany

      He did know that the child was black, because he told the 911 dispatch that the child was black. I'm not saying that this is a race thing, but he knew that the child that he murdered was indeed black.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:37 am | Report abuse |
    • NO JUSTICE IN AMERICA

      You're wrong! Race was a factor! On a previous page, CNN had posted the entire telephone transcrip of what happened! This transcrips revealed Zimmerman's words to the police and the victim's words as well, while the victim was wearing a head piece and talking to his girlfriend on his phone. Zimmerman was told not to follow the kid then later on the transcript, Zimmerman told the cops the victim has ran behind the nearby house and he Zimmerman was now chasing the victim. Moments later Zimmerman told the police he is close to the victim and he's is black at which time Zimmerman then stated..."its they who ussually get away" and he also used another inflammatory word in referring to the victim. And although the police told him not to follow the kid, he did and confronted the kid and murdered him. So how's that selfe defense?

      Secondly, the telephone transcript of the victim states that the victim told his girlfriend that someone was chasing him and his girlfriend told him that he should run but he told his girlfriend that he won't run but he will walk fast. The transcript further states that when Zimmerman finally caught up with the victim, the victim asked Zimmerman "why are you following me?" Then moments later, the victim was shot. In any court of law, that evidence translates into racial profiling and cold blooded murder that deserves the death penalty.

      Finally, one has to wonder what would have been Zimmerman's response if the victim was white1 As Zimmerman said, "its they who usually get away." So in other words, if the person being persued was white, he's still be alive today. Let's face it, America is unraveling by the threat and self destruction by the hour!

      March 21, 2012 at 10:38 am | Report abuse |
    • BlackandProud

      Learn the facts in the case and listen to the 911 tapes and then see if you think race was the driving factor. Sometimes racism is the root cause and some time it isn't. Why I don't share the techniques or the tool box this author shares, I do share her fear for my children. Yes, black on black crime is rampart but that's an additional worry. To act like racism isn't in full effect and that blacks are just playing a victim is just frustrating. My parents lived under Jim Crow laws, picked cotton, sort all of the stuff that went on in the PBS "Slavery by a Different Name", which recounts how blacks were forced into servitude long after the Emacipation Proclaimation and my grandma was "The Help". My dad was the 1st black at his job at Procter & Gamble, and when he started they would put little black dolls on his desk and racial slur like "N***** go back to Africa". This was also told to my older sis by a teacher at school. My sis is 49 yrs old. So this stuff didn't happen that long ago. And don't you think these same racists have children and grandchildren to perpetuate what they started.

      To Ashy, please don't talk to me about affirmative action and school because I was the child growing up that had the highest grade point avg, high IQ for all my yrs of school. I was valedictorian of my h.s. and at the time it was ranked #1 in the nation. Nobody gave me anything and lots of times I had to be twice that of my white peers. Most affirmative action benefits go to white women.

      March 21, 2012 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
      • NO JUSTICE IN AMERICA

        @BlacklandProud

        Thank you!

        March 21, 2012 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      well how about my descendants, im part asian, and my grandparents had to walk for days on end to escape the chinese regime, their first two babies died of starvation on the walk, then they all lived in hongkong starving and eating whatever they grew in their little garden, then they lived in a ghetto apartment with one bedroom and 12 people in america. they were called discriminatory names, were discriminated against often in society and in life in general, when the third generation , their kids children, me and my cousins grew up in the same project, we had multi ethnic friends but had to watch out for the gangs of blacks that went around robbing and beating up whoever was by themselves.

      March 21, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      never once did they instill in us that we should fear all black people. we didnt run around going you cant understand what its like to be asian. we werent taught that we had to act a certain way or the black kids would get us. the noncriminal kids all hung together of all races. later when my parents moved me to the suburb, white groups of kids called me derogatory asian terms and constantly made remarks and discriminated against me. my parents again did not drill into me that i should be careful the white people might get me. so my point is we never fell back on that CRUTCH that my parents had it bad, my people were held down.

      March 21, 2012 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
      • proud parent

        once again i had more to post but cnn sux and says its posted but its not so whats there isnt fully in context and im sick of spending like an hour to post one comment

        March 21, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
      • Freethinker

        It's wonderful that your parents were able to escape the country where they were oppressed and come to "the land of opportunity" for a new start. There would be no need to talk about how your parents had it bad. They didn't have it as bad as the folks who had to stay behind in Maoist China. By your standard you were very lucky despite everything you endured. Can you see how it is hard to compare that situation with the topic of this article?

        March 22, 2012 at 1:50 am | Report abuse |
    • Freethinker

      You clearly didn't listen to the 911 tapes where Zimmerman identifies Trayvon Martin as being black.

      March 22, 2012 at 12:16 am | Report abuse |
  4. M

    IF THE YOUNG MAN WALKING THROUGH THAT GATED COMMUNITY WERE WHITE WE WOULD NOT BE HAVING THIS DISCUSSION.

    March 21, 2012 at 9:51 am | Report abuse |
    • jwk1

      Your Caps Lock key got stuck.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
    • StormFront

      My question is why was a black kid walking through a gated white community? Those gates are there for a reason. Let it be a lesson learned.

      March 21, 2012 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
      • Lina

        Oh my. Please re-evaluate what you just said. Lesson learned? I didn't think this story could get any sadder. You just made it sadder with this post.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
      • Why

        Now we are back to Jim Crow days of "whites only" and "colors only" He had as much right to be there as Zimmerman.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
      • GraphicsGirl777

        Are you mixing medications again dear stormfront? You really should just keep quiet. You are embarassing yourself.

        March 21, 2012 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Lee

    Thank you for this. Beautifully insightful and well-written.

    March 21, 2012 at 9:50 am | Report abuse |
    • Deb

      I am white, grew up and went to school in Tennessee and Virginia during the 60"s. I was often ashamed for the way blacks were treated back then and still to this day. This loving mother has every right and responsibility to teach her son as she has. Her story has made me cry but I am glad she wrote it. It is just so sad that in this time we are still saying these things. And, I most certainly agree that a volunteer night watchman should not have a gun!

      March 21, 2012 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
      • sue

        Amen, Deb. Very well put and I agree with you completely.

        March 21, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jim

    What the hell is a Neighborhood Watch person doing with a freakin gun?
    Being black may or may not been a factor in this it doesn't change the fact that this man should not have had a gun.I suspect that if it had been a white kid with a dyed black mohawk and piercings we'd still be talking about a dead child and a trigger happy imbecile.
    Untrained people should not be patrolling our streets that's what cops are for.

    March 21, 2012 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
  7. Brenda

    I am from Newfoundland, Canada and had occasion to vacation years ago in Orlando, Florida. My daughter who was 12 at the time was in the hotel swimming pool when a young black girl got in. They were having a great time playing when another child who was white got in the pool. Immediatly her mother came running out and told her to get out of the pool because of the black child in it. We do not experience this kind of racial dicrimination in this province and hope we never will.

    March 21, 2012 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
  8. Chavi

    It all comes down to how well your children are raised. Black Male with his Pants down below the waist usually = a thug, White Male with a shaved head usually = a racist skinhead & Hispanic Male with a shaved head with pants below the waist usually = a thug as well. It's all about your image and what people think of you!

    March 21, 2012 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Donna

      Apparently your way of thinking doesn't work because if it did, this boy wouldn't be dead. Zimmerman was thinking the same way you are. This way of thinking is also the reason women get raped.. '"But he LOOKED like such a nice guy". If most decisions were made on the way someone looked, this country would be in even worse trouble than it already is. Think outside the box for a change.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Freethinker

      Chavi that's what you tell yourself to make it easier for you to sleep at night. Read Bryonn Bain's Village Voice article "Walking While Black: A Black Man's Bill of Rights." It tells the story of a Harvard educated law student (Bain) who is well-dressed, well-spoken and well-mannered and none of that mattered the night he was arrested on trumped up charges. You can do what you like with your image but if you have dark skin sooner or later in America you will have an experience that is based on your skin color and not on anything to do with you.

      March 22, 2012 at 1:57 am | Report abuse |
  9. family nightmare

    That was my son, it was your son and it was our son who screamed for his life. Anyone who sees color better shut their eyes and listen to that tape and wonder if any of our children should ever have to scream for their life because of the color of their skin.

    March 21, 2012 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
  10. Christopher

    The black that was shot was over 200 lbs and 6ft 3 inches tall, the pictures that CNN shows are when he was 12, that is to make you believe that a young child was shot. The repeated comments about the "skittles" is meant to make you feel the same way. You aren't fooling anyone CNN, real journalists outside of your left wing propaganda have reported what actually happened.

    March 21, 2012 at 9:20 am | Report abuse |
    • BP

      So what if he was. My son made 10 last month and is 5'3" 100 lbs, he could very well be 6'3" 200 lbs when he is 17. That doesn't mean someone has a right to murder him because he might look itimidating. This story scares me on so many levels raising three little black boys.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Christopher

      Since you will be teaching your so called "3 little black boys" to be afraid of white men and no doubt to be racist, they probably will suffer the same fate or be arrested multiple times for violence. Racists like you are the problem with this country, you teach your black youth to hate, that kind of brainwashing, fear and hate is going to make your "3 black boys" convicts with the rest of their brothers in prison if not out right killed by a white guy who isn't going to tolerate their Sh**.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
      • Rydons Momma

        @christopher – All I can say is I hope you don't have children. This has to be one of the MOST VILE comments I've ever read! BP it's people like Christopher here that your little ones need to know about. Please people don't raise your children in fear, fear breeds hate. However children do need to be taught that hate comes in all colors, religions and gender. Teach your children to look at the persons heart, not their skin color. Christopher, for the record, I'm a white, professional, mother of 3 grown children.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
    • John K.

      Don't let the facts get in the way of your racism. He had 110lbs on the kid. Zimmerman is a nut, and he figured he'd be called a hero. He shot an innocent teen. You couldn't be more wrong. What if it was your kid?

      March 21, 2012 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Oceangrl

      That is not true. The 17 year old was only 140-150 lbs. The man that did the shooting was over 200 lbs. I am here in Orlando and hear and read the news every day. He was visiting his father in a gated neighborhood minding his own business.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Jennifer

      Christopher – you are the pot calling the kettle BLACK. You write about people looking in the mirror to see their own racism – I suggest you look in yours. I don't know where you got the idea that the young man who was murdered was 200 pounds. He was not – the murderer was. The young man was about 140 pounds. Hardly a menacing figure when many women are about 140 – 160. You are on this site to spread more hatred. The things you write are reflecting your very nature – the one you claim others have. Stay behind your closed walls and please don't carry a gun – you may be the one shooting and killing an innocent person next because of your hate-filled, racist views. You strike me as someone who is very afraid and miserable. Enjoy your day.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Why

      So, Christopher it is ok to shoot someone because they are over 6ft and 200 pounds?

      March 21, 2012 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
  11. Tremonisha

    The more we talk about black and white and hispanic and minorities, the more we will continue to live with racism. LEt's start thinking how to live as Americans, and let those with color blindness die as old people, ignorant, but gone from this earth. We are better than we were 50 yers ago, 100 years ago - and we can continue down this path. "We shall be free." All of us.

    March 21, 2012 at 9:19 am | Report abuse |
  12. Linda

    I find it sad that this little boy is being poisoned to believe that everyone hates him because he is black! We have to move on and realize that we are not victims of the past and putting ideas like this in young child's mind is just wrong. We all teach our children to look out for their safety in this violent cruel world. It should not be based on the color of our skin......

    March 21, 2012 at 9:18 am | Report abuse |
    • snoof

      I agree with you in that it is very unfortunate that she is instilling this fear of the white (or other races) in her son at such a young age. I too live in Atlanta and am of South Asian descent and thankfully have never experienced or seen explicit racism being done to another person, but realize that tensions run far deeper in the South. I think teaching her son how to be "free-ish" is not the answer, because my thought would be that her son would grow up resenting white people or other races that aren't typically prejudiced against.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:31 am | Report abuse |
  13. Christopher

    The story about the 3 year old white girl being racist is a lie and it's obvious. Blacks lie through their teeth about everything and it's easy to see through. Now concerning CNN and their 10 bigoted articles a day on this story. You are NOT going to be the judge, jury and executioner of people you don't like CNN as much as you want to be, you are not the law and you certainly don't know what really happened. You cannot pretend to be a civil rights "justice" network when you are so blatantly a left wing white hating agency. You do NOT report black on white crime which is FAR, higher than vice versa, much of it racially related, do shut your mouths and do not talk to me or anyone else in the country about racism CNN while you are so ignorant and racist yourselves. You have no right to speak of racism when you turn your bigoted left wing heads and ignore the enormous amount of black racism in this country. Once again, shut your bigoted, hate filled black mouths and look in the mirror where you will see the the real racists.

    March 21, 2012 at 9:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      How can you say the story is a lie? Were you there? People use the argument that none of us were there when Zimmerman shot the young man so we don't know what the truth is, and the same applies to her story. Since none of us were there, we have to accept the story at face value. And the saying "kids say the darndest things" is brought to light here. That little girl had to have heard that said by somebody else before, as a 6 year old is not capable of coming up with logic like that on their own. And to say "all blacks like" indicates you have some sterotypes of your own so maybe a look in the mirror for yourself is needed. All PEOPLE lie. Lying is not owned by any one group or race of people. I think the lady that wrote this might be taking things a bit far, but I do believe that young people (of all races) do need to be aware that racism still is alive and can have an impact on them. And to anybody who would say otherwise take this into consideration, I recently saw for sale a bumper sticker that said "Re-Nig Obama".

      March 21, 2012 at 9:38 am | Report abuse |
    • M

      That is the most ignorant response I have read in a long time.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
      • Brian

        M how so?

        March 21, 2012 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • Christopher

      Nothing should be taken from CNN at face value, nothing. CNN is a well known anti white racist propaganda network. There is no truth on this network, only racist propaganda meant to harm white people.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
      • Michelle

        Christopher. If you don't like CNN reporting, go back to your bubble and watch Fox news. Where you can be told the lies you prefer to hear.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
      • Larry

        Christopher doesn't like the letters CNN. I'll bet he loves the letters KKK though.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
    • charlese

      How dare you speak of racism I do not believe a 3year old can be racist. Children learn from their parents. I am an African American and more importantly I am an AMERICAN and racism is going to destroy America. My son almost lost his life at the WORLD TRADE CENTER the terroist did not care if you were BLACK or CAUCASIAN the only thing they cared about was the Americans. I LOVE ALL AMERICANS PLEASE STOP RACISM""""" WE NEED TO BE TOGETHER FOR OUR GREAT UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:46 am | Report abuse |
      • Freethinker

        They can be racist if it's taught to them just like they can know their ABCs and how to say I have to go potty. My sister was once at a classmate's house and the classmate's much younger toddler brother pointed his finger at her and said, "You're brown. I hate brown people. Get outta my house." Where does that come from? The child's comment is a clear indication that someone in the family is racist.

        March 22, 2012 at 2:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Dr. Guy

      I believe the story. The six year old was taught that bad behavior by someone older, likely her parents. My grandfather of blessed memory told me a similar story growing up in western Pennsylvania. He would play with non-Jewish kids, and at some point the mothers would come out and yell at their kids for playing with that "dirty Jew". My grandfather was quick to point out that they were as dirty as him, and that they ended up being his good friends later in spite of their parents' prejudices. I also understand the author's fear- I am also concerned that my family could be targeted because we're Jewish. However, I am not going to live in fear because of that- the United States is still a relatively safe place to live regardless of your background.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
    • NO JUSTICE IN AMERICA

      So you're a white cross burning white supremacist confederate with Jim Crow views! Your bigoted and racist comments don't surprise anyone! Go back under your trailer!

      March 21, 2012 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
      • Corinne

        "So you're a white cross burning white supremacist confederate with Jim Crow views! Your bigoted and racist comments don't surprise anyone! Go back under your trailer!"

        Wow! I don't know what I said that set you off. I'm a middle-age white Jewish lady. I'm not a white supremacist, confederate or have Jim Crow views. And I have never been in a trailer.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
    • LDM

      "The story about the 3 year old white girl being racis tis a lie "

      Did you fail reading comprehension in elementary school? It is very obvious from the author's description that the 3 year old girl was not racist and was very happy to sit next to the author's son and be read to. The older sister who the author guessed was around 6 was the one who was racist. Six years old is old enough to have the roots of indoctrination planted.

      Do not call someone else a lier without understanding what they actually said.

      March 21, 2012 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  14. REALIST

    Very poor journalism CNN!!!!!!!!!!!!! The guy that killed him was not white!!!!!!!! Just as Obama is not white!!!!! This was not a White on black crime, yet you stretch the truth to try to make it that. In doing so you are inciting protest/ riots in minority communitys in Florida. If someone gets killed as a result of this uprising what will be said then. What will you report. If its a white person that is killed you wont report anything, but you better believe if its a black man you wil find some way to inject race into it. America as a whole whether they are verbal about it or not are SICK AND TIRED OF THE RACE CARD!!!! Give it up and start reporting real news

    March 21, 2012 at 9:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Kat

      Realist-This is a blog written by a mother, not a journalist. This is her point of view, not a journalistic attempt to point out the truth.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Jo

      The guy didn't have to be white to be racist.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |
    • Donna

      Actually according to the rules your ancestors set up, yes he is White. His mother is Hispanic and his father is White. There wouldn't be a need for a race card if people looked past color, but there are some out there of all races that can't seem to do it. But when it deserved to be played it's played. Sure some overplay it, but common sense should tell you which ones are worthy. And this one is beyond worthy.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Ashy

      Donna, Actually he is bi-racial, not white.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:35 am | Report abuse |
    • NO JUSTICE IN AMERICA

      @ Realist

      The shooter Zimmerman's mother is said to be Hispanic and his father white! But his crime was racially motivated because on the telephone transcrip to the police, after he was close enough to tell the police that the kid was black, he stated to the cop "its their type who usually get away with everything" then he used another inflammatory word in referring to the black kid. So who do you think Zimmerman was referring to when he said "they always get away with everything?" He was referring to black males in America!

      Let's face it, Zimmerman is a blatant bigot and racist and a cold blooded murdered who should be executed. And how dare you try to compare a murderer's bi-racial background to President Obama? You people make the world the laughing stock and scorn of America.

      March 21, 2012 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  15. Nikki

    this is just wrong im white and many of my friends are black but that doesnt mean they are dirty or dangerous if people really that ignorant to believe that the watch captain should be free of this wrong doing thats not right i fee he should be put in jail for his wrong doing against him and his poor mother and his family

    March 21, 2012 at 8:43 am | Report abuse |
  16. bill

    Hey T-bonestop smokin your weed and get a life.

    March 21, 2012 at 8:42 am | Report abuse |
    • cat

      yeah!! i couldn't have said it better!

      March 21, 2012 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
  17. Jill

    IM WHITE!!! and i think what you all are saying is so wrong. My step dad is black and people say stuff to him all the time about the color of his skin and it is so wrong for people to say stuff just because he is black. It was so wrong for that poor little boy to get shout just because he is black that man had no right

    March 21, 2012 at 8:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Ashy

      Jill,

      The arguments on this board are not reflecting what happened to Treyvon. I am sure EVERYONE on this board agrees that Zimmerman, who is half hispanic and half white should go to jail for a very long time. The arguments on this board are in reference to what this mother who wrote this blog is teaching her son. Maybe she is doing it inadvertently. But she is teaching him that anyone not black is a threat and should be approached with caution. Cops are not to be trusted. He is not just a human boy, he is a black boy. She is perpetuating the very thing she is trying to teach him to be cautious of. She is being racist.

      March 21, 2012 at 8:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Christopher

      Jill, you lie through your teeth.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:39 am | Report abuse |
  18. Alex

    That is SOOOO sad! I really hate the guy that shot him. The nerve of some people.

    March 21, 2012 at 8:42 am | Report abuse |
  19. diesy

    that is called racism you dont just think he is trying to cause trouble he was eating skittles

    March 21, 2012 at 8:41 am | Report abuse |
  20. ohbehave

    Given that blacks are 18x more likely to attack a white than visa versa (FBI statistics), I hope that this mother is teaching her kid to refrain from assault!
    The fact that racism-hunters are reduced to a case such as this Zimmerman case shows how rare cases of racism really are. Here, we have a freak incident (truly, it has only happened ONCE) by a guy who is known to be a nut (Zimmerman)..... and Zimmerman WILL BE arrested..... and THIS is evidence of a racist nation???
    Man, we are pounding the carpet for the tiniest morsel of racism. These "racism-hunters" WANT this to be a racist nation because our culture is koo koo for racism... we have a fetish for it.... we simply must believe in it or we don't feel right.

    March 21, 2012 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
    • steve

      CNN eats this stuff up because it increases activity (like our web responses), boosts ratings and sells more ad time. Meanwhile, it gets rational people all spun up over something that most likely isn't what CNN is portraying and reduces the effectiveness of the judicial system to do what it's supposed to do. Ironically, however it's always white racism that's reported here and never the opposite. They just ignore that exists.

      March 21, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      What is the link to the data you referenced? I'd like to look into that becuase it does not sound accurate at all.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
      • What Now

        Thank you, Brian. Sadly, many people think that their opinion is the only truth. We have forgotten to include real evidence in our self-righteous opinions.

        March 21, 2012 at 9:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Sane Person

      In 2010, there were 6,008 known hate crime offenders. 58.6% were white, 18.4% were black, 8.9% were multiracial, 1.1% were Asian, 1% were native American, and 12% were unknown. On this same report, it states that there were a reported 3,725 single-bias hate crime offenses. 69.8% motivated by anti-black bias, 18.2% anti-white, 5.7% anti-multiracial, 5.1% anti-Asian, 1.2% anti-native American. This all comes from http://www.fbi.gov. Here is a link: http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/hate-crime/2010

      I'm not completely sure where you got your "blacks are 18x more likely to attack whites" statistic came from, but I did not see that on those FBI statistics. I would love to check it out, if you would point me in the right direction.

      March 21, 2012 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
  21. ohbehave

    An idiot named Zimmerman does all the wrong things and shoots an innocent guy. Zimmerman is well known to be a fool in his community. He will be arrested. It is a tragic story, but is it any more tragic than the slaughter and carnage going on inside the "inner city" EVERY DAY?
    Also, I am sure that when it was found that Zimmerman was not lilly white it wasTRULY disappointing to the "racism!!! racism!!!" people out there.
    Whites committing violent crimes against blacks is like worrying about bird attacks. Sure, they might happen (rarely), but it is WAY down on your list of REAL problems.

    March 21, 2012 at 8:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Sane Person

      Again.... In 2010, there were 6,008 known hate crime offenders. 58.6% were white, 18.4% were black, 8.9% were multiracial, 1.1% were Asian, 1% were native American, and 12% were unknown. On this same report, it states that there were a reported 3,725 single-bias hate crime offenses. 69.8% motivated by anti-black bias, 18.2% anti-white, 5.7% anti-multiracial, 5.1% anti-Asian, 1.2% anti-native American. This all comes from http://www.fbi.gov. Here is a link: http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/hate-crime/2010

      It happens more often than you think.

      March 21, 2012 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Clint

    First off that little biatch at the airport should have been smacked. How the h e l l is a three year old dangerous? Sitting on the floor at the airport I would think is not the cleanest place to sit, but that's just me being a germ fre ak. But, what I'm taking from this article is that she is teaching her son he is not good enough, that he cant' play and have fun with his friends when she should be teaching him to grow up to be a decent, responsible MAN, and not to expect to be a target. I just got the feeling that she is holding him back with these examples.

    March 21, 2012 at 8:20 am | Report abuse |
    • ilvpitz

      I think it's sad that this mother is teaching her son to be so scared. He can't just be happy-go-lucky without always having to remember not to run. She seems a bit paranoid to me.

      March 21, 2012 at 8:34 am | Report abuse |
      • Clint

        Her and her family are more than welcome in my neighborhood in north GA. Her son could run free and play with all the other kids in the neighborhood where the kids in our neighborhood dont see color. We have a great mix of hispanic, whi te, bla ck, asi an, and middle eastern kids in the neighborhood who all play together on almost a daily basis. Which is the way it should be.

        March 21, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
      • Brownie

        I was thinking along the same lines as you are ilvpitz, the Mom is scarring her son possibly making him resent he was ever born black, she has some very serious issues she needs to address.Stop hindering that young man. He may even grow up hating white people or people of another race, just let him him be a kid a healthy NORMAL kid!!! lady let him alone with that foolishness "not running because he is black" that is one of the most ridiculous saying I have ever heard shame on her as a parent!!!

        March 21, 2012 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
  23. Jorge

    The Stand Your Ground law was stupidly and oversimply written by a Bushbaby crony. Under the premise of the law I could be sitting at the beach, politely stand up to ask someone who is kicking sand in my face not to and be shot, that someone could claim that he/she felt "threatened" and be sent on his/her merry way if there were no one willing to bear witness to the contrary. This country gives too much power to people who are not intellectually qualified as far as their common sense, to write law.

    March 21, 2012 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
  24. ohbehave

    Your black sons are FAR more likely to be assaulted or killed by a black person. In this story, a freak incident occurred: a crazy person on a community watch got into a scuffle with an innocent person. Things got out of hand and he shot the young man. The police, trying to comply with complex laws and seeing a bloodied Zimmerman, decided not to arrest him on the spot. Now THIS is some kind of "oh my god! racism is rampant!!!" type deal? really?
    Being assaulted or killed by a white guy is the LEAST of a black person's concerns.... way down on the list of possible problems. Sometimes, I think "racism!!!" hunters are being disingenuous when they say they are "worried" about this.

    March 21, 2012 at 8:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Ashy

      Zimmerman is not white. He is half white and half hispanic...

      March 21, 2012 at 8:21 am | Report abuse |
    • Donna

      "Being assaulted or killed by a white guy is the LEAST of a black person's concerns"

      Maybe where you live. But you don't live everywhere. And for you to state what concerns are on a Black person's list is just plain conjecture. If you are not Black you can't possibly know what is on our lists and in order they appear.. Stop acting like you're an authority on Black folks.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:51 am | Report abuse |
      • Ashy

        Donna,

        I think you are missing the point... Blacks should be more concerned with someone of their own race committing a crime against them as opposed to someone of another race.

        http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/race.cfm , only available up to 2005:

        White on White: 4755
        Black on Black: 4497
        Black on White: 934
        White on Black: 337
        Other on Black: 4

        March 21, 2012 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  25. SOoljaGurl

    Well I have bipassed all the other stories that say Woo-is-me, woo-is-me. Everybody complians about the way black men are being picked on and complain about "the man".... Black women should stop having black babies with black men and have bi-racial babies with other color men. Solves the Black man being held down by "The Man" issue that all black people complain about....

    March 21, 2012 at 8:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Ashy

      What?

      March 21, 2012 at 8:20 am | Report abuse |
      • proud parent

        lol ashy i echo your sentiment

        March 21, 2012 at 8:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Kat

      This shows you are ignorant enough to believe that mixed babies are treated as equals. Studies have been published that show mixed babies have an even harder time because they do not really belong to one group or the other, they aren't white, nor do they feel they can identify with being white, and they aren't black, nor do they feel they identify with being black. Your IDIOTIC idea would make racism even worse.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Donna

      Shouldn't that be "woe is me"? That right there made the rest of the post null and void. Simply stupid.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:53 am | Report abuse |
    • MAFV

      Obvioualy, you may be right...because white women love some black men...uuuhmmmmmm.

      March 21, 2012 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  26. Ryan

    So many blacks in this article claiming they are white. You aren't fooling anyone blackies.

    "I am a white woman" Please....... shut the hell up, you're black IQs are too low to fool anyone.

    March 21, 2012 at 8:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Shannon

      Now thats just plain racist... You are a meanie...

      March 21, 2012 at 8:14 am | Report abuse |
      • Ashy

        Ryan,

        Wow, that is racist. How about some intelligent response?

        March 21, 2012 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Jorge

      Ryan, go worship on George Wallace's grave or something.

      March 21, 2012 at 8:21 am | Report abuse |
    • Simone

      YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF YOURSELF FOR SAYING THAT. dO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND THIS YOUNG BOY LIFE WAS TAKEN FROM HIM FOR DOING NOTHING! BEING BLACK IS HARD IN AMERICA N ITS SAD THAT THE WORLD HAS TO HAVE PEOPLE LIKE YOU THAT ARE COMPLETLY BLIND SIGHTED AND UNEDUCATED. OUR IQ ARE NOT LOW WE SERVE OUR LORD JUST AS A WHITE PERSON OR HISPANIC PERSON. UR A DISGUSTING HUMAN BEIN

      March 21, 2012 at 8:22 am | Report abuse |
      • Bloody Stool

        Before you call someone uneducated.....two things first learn how to spell it, second if this is above your mental capacity there is a built-in spell checker USE IT

        March 21, 2012 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
    • WhatintheWorld?

      Ryan...you dumb dingbat...people like you are reasons why crap like this happen! Go somewhere and put your head between your legs and breathe deeply...bet you don't come out alive after that..

      March 21, 2012 at 8:40 am | Report abuse |
    • Donna

      STFU with this stupid sh!t.

      March 21, 2012 at 9:55 am | Report abuse |
  27. Socrateacher

    Thank you, CNN, for publishing this. I teach at middle school science, and I wish we had more moms who raised their sons to be courageous and humbly proud. Us 'white ladies' are often blind to the challenges young black men and women face (on top of the usual 'puberty issues' which are tough enough by themselves) THANK YOU for staying strong, and teaching your son to have a strong and good set of values... to not hate...and to conduct himself with confidence – and DIGNITY.

    March 21, 2012 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |
    • Ashy

      Socrateacher, I am just wondering. When she repeats the story of the little girl in the airport to him, that is teaching him what? Because I kind of think it is teaching him to hate. Why fill his head with that negative incident?

      March 21, 2012 at 8:08 am | Report abuse |
      • Addie

        She is teaching him caution.

        March 21, 2012 at 8:36 am | Report abuse |
      • Ashy

        Addie, Really? You think so... So repeating a story where he was seemingly judged by a 6 year old white girl due to his race is teaching him caution? What she should be teaching him is that some people are not exposed to people who are different. This could be due to their geographical location or the school they go to etc... When they make statements like that they are uninformed and ignorant. This is not the norm.

        March 21, 2012 at 8:43 am | Report abuse |
  28. White and Proud

    There are far more white victims of black violence and rape than the other way around, far, far more and CNN completely ignores this and many many people know CNN ignores this. CNN's side taking bigotry and racism towards whites will not help anything, it will only fuel more and more racism.

    March 21, 2012 at 7:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Ashy

      You can't call yourself White and Proud... That is racist. We are supposed to be White and Sorry.

      March 21, 2012 at 8:10 am | Report abuse |
      • Ashy

        You can be "Black and Proud" or have "Brown Pride", but as soon as you say "White Pride" or "White and Proud" you are a neo-nazi or KKK member...

        March 21, 2012 at 8:12 am | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      im human and proud

      March 21, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Ashy

      proud parent: Me too. I am just trying to point out the clear reverse racism that white people deal with. As this article is clearly pointing out the racism that black deal with. And the mother seems to think that this only works one way. Whites are expected to be sorry for atrocities that their ancestors committed a long long long time ago.

      March 21, 2012 at 8:54 am | Report abuse |
      • proud parent

        yah i was just making a joke

        March 21, 2012 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Addie

    As a white woman, I don't want to say I'm the opposite of Drew because humans are not in fact binary, but I have very few surface similarities to him. I want to thank you for sharing your story and your concerns. I'm thankful that I don't need to worry about these things and sad that you do. Whether or not a kid can run on across a lawn is something I've never thought of before and I am a better person for seeing a different side to the things you've brought up. It is my deepest hope that fractions of society will mend and we will eventually be able to see each other as part of one human family.

    March 21, 2012 at 5:55 am | Report abuse |
  30. v ogle

    You have every right and reason to be afraid for your precious son. People have their heads stuck in the sand if they believe your son is afforded the same passes my white son may have been granted. He was shot and killed by a stranger when he was 22. The shooter claims he was afraid and attacked first. The only other witness is dead and his cremains sit in a box within my sight. Be afraid, be very afraid.

    V O

    March 21, 2012 at 3:56 am | Report abuse |
    • HAWAII

      Perhaps so, but this is still the wrong debate –
      YOUR WHITE SON, AND HER BLACK SON ARE MORE LIKELY TO BE SHOT TO DEATH BY A YOUNG BLACK MALE (if stranger killing) than a white -oh wait a minute Hispanic itchy trigger finger neighborhood watch dude.

      ALSO BE SMART. Don't wear a hoodie in 80% weather, baggie pants anywhere (fashion from prison -they take away belts) cut through yards etc etc.

      This probably is as much to do about income, zip code, -than race.

      March 21, 2012 at 6:32 am | Report abuse |
      • Donna

        What is 80% weather?

        March 21, 2012 at 9:58 am | Report abuse |
  31. Dave

    I'm really not sure how to take this article. I'm partially appalled, at the writer for reinforcing racism, and a little sympathetic at the same time.

    Just as someone might target someone for being a specific race or religion, reinforcing yourself as the target does nothing for changing either sides acceptance. If you live a life expecting to be targeted, you will be.

    I do understand the desire to protect ones self, and or family, so it just seems to be a dilemma. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. I really have no right to say this, but really, if you're gonna be profiled, and eyed for being what you are, why try to somehow change that by acting different or subjugated?

    March 21, 2012 at 3:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Richard

      I understand what you are saying, but as a parent, I would probably do the same thing if having your kid alive requires you to teach them on how to act around people who could be potential racists.

      March 21, 2012 at 3:53 am | Report abuse |
      • Jennifer

        This is a interesting point you are making. I agree, the safety of your child trumps all else when you are a parent, perhaps even teaching your child to be color blind. Yet, if I follow that logic, shouldn't I then teach my two white daughters to be very wary of men in general and black men in particular, as statistically they pose a risk to them. In fact my daughters are at much greater risk of harm from a black male then a black male is at risk from a caucasian. Is that not so? Not to mention that the greatest risk to a black male is another black male. Treyvon's death is a tragedy and as a Nation we should be appalled. However, we need to be just as concerned about the epidemic of black on black violence that is sweeping through our cities and has been for some time. I understand the point that the mother is making in this article but I have to agree with other comments made here that she is perpetuating the same racism that she seems to find so abhorrent.

        March 21, 2012 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
      • Dave

        While I understand that type of response, I don't agree.
        I have many children, and much of what I try to teach them when it comes to safety isn't based on how to not be who they are, but how to be who they are safely. They can be who they are, I just make them aware that certain things may be taken a certain way, and what risks might be involved.

        I want my children to be safe, and live to be productive, caring, and strong adults. I set rules and limits based on their age and personalities, who they are, not what they are. I can't stop a tragedy, or a hate crime, but I can make them all aware of the good and bad the best I can.

        March 22, 2012 at 12:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Ross

      First of all Dave,I don't believe the intent of the writer was to reinforce racism.It's a fact that racism does exist and probably always will as long as people fear their differences and believe that one race/class is superior to another.My take on the the article was a mother simply trying to educate her son with regard to the fact that regardless how many degrees he might obtain,how well dressed he might be there are some who will always see him as just another lowlife threat to their existance.As the song says..."that's just the way it is".

      March 21, 2012 at 4:52 am | Report abuse |
      • Dave

        I don't think the intent is to reinforce racism, but that's how it strikes me. It may well be something to bring racism to light, but like many things, I just don't like the light it's under.

        I might be a little naive, but I don't believe casting roles is the healthiest or effective way to move into the future.

        March 22, 2012 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
    • HAWAII

      Dave, I got the persecution complex vibe too.
      Just raise your kid to be SMART.

      A daughter, of Any race, needs way more Safety Training, then a male of Any race.......but when do we ever read about that? As a rule? Keep her in -or roll the dice.

      March 21, 2012 at 6:36 am | Report abuse |
      • Melissa

        Persecution complex? Really? I suppose you think Trayvon's family just has a persecution complex too.

        March 21, 2012 at 7:54 am | Report abuse |
  32. LJW

    What this article boils down to: "If I don't act 'black,' then they won't kill me/hate me/stop being my friend." You're encouraging your son to "act white" so that white people will be more accepting of him. The truth is, there will always be racists and no matter how "white" or "non-black" he acts, they will hate him. Trayvon wasn't doing anything threatening; that didn't help him. This reminds me of the situation of a lot of LGBT people: "If I don't tell you I'm gay, you won't beat the s*** out of me/kill me/hate me." I mean, really - how f/ing messed up is that? Living in fear of who you are is no way to live.

    March 21, 2012 at 3:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Joanna

      Yeah, but being ALIVE is the only way to live. That's her point.

      March 21, 2012 at 5:21 am | Report abuse |
    • November

      Not once did the author write that her intention is to teach her son to "act white". That would imply that being black automatically meant one was wild, rough around the edges, and abrasive.

      The author is simply cautioning her son to be aware of his environment and to bring as little attention to himself as possible. As an African-American woman, I recall my mother saying the same to my sister and I. We were told to always dress a certain way, not talk too loud, be "refined".

      What our parents forgot, as the author has, is that regardless of what a black person does or says, regardless of how kind or gentle, there will always be someone who doesn't like us at face value and will always refer to their stereotypes to respond to us. Drew experienced this as a small kind child simply trying to share a toy. Trayvon, unfortunately died because of this.

      March 21, 2012 at 6:08 am | Report abuse |
  33. WomanintheMirror

    As an older AA female who was born during the days of segregation I'd like to add my two cents to this conversation. My grandparents and parents lived during the worst of racial times and they never once told us to avoid any person because of race, religion, class, etc. We were never told we had to act or dress in any certain way. The only thing that was told to us was to treat everyone as we wanted to be treated ourselves. In other words "with respect". For me each person is a unique individual who earns the respect of not being judged because of something someone of their race did to another. Don't get me wrong, I've had my anti-black encounters, but it was done by "one" individual, not the entire race, just as I don't want to be judged based on the acts of one or a few people of my own kind. I chose not to keep reminding my children of what used to be, but what can be in the future for them by teaching respect for all humans, as my parents/grandparents did for me. What I did not want to do, as I expect the same for my parents, was to impose my personal feelings on my children as they would have to grow up and experience life in their own time, that is far different from mine. Educating them on our history and learning from those lessons better ways to get along is the only way I felt I could help my children. My children are now grown and yes they have had their encounter once or twice with someone with negative views, but it was only one person, not the entire race. Change starts with the person you see in the mirror everyday.

    March 21, 2012 at 12:52 am | Report abuse |
    • stan

      if treyvon was the sort of young man that this woman is, he likely would still be alive today.

      March 21, 2012 at 1:20 am | Report abuse |
      • DrK

        Yeah, if he was a black woman he wouldn't be killed.
        Great point. All he had to do was stop being male.

        March 21, 2012 at 2:37 am | Report abuse |
      • Ross

        The truth is we do not know what type of youngman Trayvon was,it doesn't matter.His death was unwarranted no excuses will suffice.

        March 21, 2012 at 5:06 am | Report abuse |
      • stan

        ross, his family try to paint the kid as sweet and innocent, hence the use of 4 year old photographs plastered all over the media.
        there are a few things we DO know from various interviews:
        -the dad said the kid was one to smart off to authority.
        -the first thing the dad did when the kid didnt come home at a proper hour was call the cops assuming his son had been arrested
        -at the time of the shooting the kid was serving a 10 day out of school suspension, the last disciplinary step before expulsion.

        it seems VERY likely to me that the kid smarted off to zimmerman, escalating an already tense situation. remember the kid was keeping his hand in the waistband of his pants, so zimmerman thought he was armed. did the kid deserve to get shot for being smart? no. of course not. but being smart helped drive the situation to the conclusion we see today. had he acted calm and respectful such as the poster i initially responded to, he likely would be alive today.

        March 21, 2012 at 6:48 am | Report abuse |
      • Socrateacher

        Stan, I teach in a public middle school setting. In the town where I live, every school is quite integrated, both 'racially' and socioeconomically. THe latter is the most important factor in whether or not kids 'smart off'... that, and whether their parents act like parents or not. MAIN POINT: Apparently, some part of you believes it was OK for Zimmerman to shoot the boy if he 'smarted off'. Out of the 130-odd kids I teach on a daily basis..... if I shot them for 'smarting off', there would only be about seven of them left after only a week or so.

        March 21, 2012 at 8:01 am | Report abuse |
      • Mikey

        Stan, If Zimmerman had remained calm and been respectful Trayvon would still be alive.

        March 21, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
    • J

      You're absolutely right. Thank you for your wise words.

      March 21, 2012 at 2:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Alfred

      I think everyone of everyone, and I mean everyone, has had that 'encounter' with someone who does not like their race.

      People with similar: ideas, ethnicities, religions, norms, ways of expressing themselves tend to group together and be more comfortable when grouped together with people that are similar in one of those ways. Just how the "Band geeks" and the "athletes" don't get along in the age-old split of school, except with race. See those people get along with each other in their own groups; the geeks don't harass the geeks, the athletes don't harass the athletes. But when mixed there is a potential for harassment due to clashing social ideologies.

      That's the most important idea to understand: when you mix people with different social ideologies, there is going to be culture shock. That culture shock gets expressed in many different ways: some positive and some negative. Cultural assimilation takes time, and eventually the cultures will mix and settle and be generally accepted. Apparently that can take a really long time. I think racism will be reduced generationally by future generations, as it has with Generation Y.

      Generation W was still overwhelmingly racist, this influenced Generation X, there was still racism publically up til about 20 years before generation Y. Since generation Y has arguably less blatant racism(ie there's no segregation anywhere) The members of Gen. Y are less likely to be racist, even when partially influenced by their parents and family. They tend to question more and accept traditional ways less.

      Personally, it's hard to imagine as African American's in the 40's and so on having it too bad. 150 years before that they were slaves. 150 years before that all the Native American's were either slaughtered or moved by military force off their homelands and are still strongly descriminated against. 10,000 years ago, the Pharohs ruled over the entire Jewish population of Egypt, enslaving all and killing and slaughtering at any whim they felt like.

      Yet, you'll never hear me complain of how my family was enslaved, because we aren't any more.

      However, we are all equally enslaved to advertising and TV and "reality" TV and religion. So everyone has that in common.

      Viewing the blind complexity, by which laws were justified to erase simplicity.
      Living in the pupil of 1,000 eyes; we are enslaved now!

      March 21, 2012 at 5:52 am | Report abuse |
    • HAWAII

      I have been reading all these crazy posts all week, many places. WomanintheMirror, You Rule!
      Dignified, poignant, undramatic, and very true and compelling.
      I wish I had as much to say. TY

      March 21, 2012 at 6:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Jennifer

      Thank you for adding such a rational and thought provoking comment to this discussion.

      March 21, 2012 at 10:12 am | Report abuse |
  34. proud parent

    that is the problem and when your in a neighborhood where the majority of kids act that way due to CULTURE, not race, you get a societal reaction which leads to harsher punishment.
    now lastly, you are classifying people. baggy pants and hoodies are worn by all races and in many places, all races of children are told not to wear baggy pants and hoodies(which is unamerican to me this is supposed to be a land of free expression), so that is no longer just a black thing. and guess what all goths arent whites, and schools have had issues with kids wearing goth wear and banned it. many goths are guess what black. and asian, and white, and indian and many more. in iraq right now gothic iraqis are being beaten to death for being goths. so my last statement before sleep is this, you cant classify people culturally by color anymore, this is america, every culture contains multiple races now. its time to stop and come together and analyze cultures irespective of race for negatives that are detrimental to society and not make it illegal (once again this is america), but make it against the what do you call it ... morays and folkays? of society (sociology was a long time ago). basically unacceptable to us as a whole, instead of embraced and encouraged and spread to our children. anyway we both agree racism is bad and trayvon was murdered and his killer should see justice. we differ on other subjects or aspects but that is what we have in common so lets stick with that. have a good night and one last time for today JUSTICE FOR TRAYVON!!

    March 21, 2012 at 12:52 am | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      finally they posted it two under is first part and this is second lol

      March 21, 2012 at 12:52 am | Report abuse |
  35. Listen to the 911Tapes

    Zimmerman is heard calling Trayvon a "f_cking c0_n" on the tapes at time point 2:20

    I'm surprised the Media has so conveniently left that out!

    March 21, 2012 at 12:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Listen to the 911Tapes

      GOOGLE IT FOR GOODNESS SAKE!

      March 21, 2012 at 12:54 am | Report abuse |
  36. proud parent

    an you think youve proven your point but your statements prove mine, keep holding onto that and teaching your children those lessons and see how fast things do not change. its what you call a self fullfilling prophecy. once again its not us its white women, and its not a cultural thing causing the treatment at school its simply color. i have lived in that lifestyle as a kid so i know what im talking about. i was once pulled over by a cop for wearing a doo rag on my head when i was a kid. i wore the baggy jeans and while i was doing that i was watching menace to society and wishing i was one of the main characters. but one day i realized that i was bumping my head to a song about robbing women on the street while my own mother was mugged when i was a child while trying to get an education to get our family out of a ghetto. i grew up intellectually. sadly many of my friends didnt.
    they play those same songs with the ir infants and children in the room and dress their kids up to look like that.

    March 21, 2012 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      lol they still wont post the second half this is ridiculous.

      March 21, 2012 at 12:49 am | Report abuse |
  37. proud parent

    so wierd they wont post my comment? anyone work for cnn want to tell me y?

    March 21, 2012 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      how could it be a duplicate post if you never posted it to begin with cnn. i give up im off to msn.

      March 21, 2012 at 12:51 am | Report abuse |
  38. Juli

    I want to thank the author. We are going to use what she wrote as an additional tool to teach our black sons and help them understand why we (their parents) have the rules that we do.

    March 21, 2012 at 12:35 am | Report abuse |
  39. Teacher

    the problem is that most white people can't even fathom having to do this because of their privilege, so they think this posting is waaaay out there. to be so privileged that you can't even see your own privilege. must be nice.

    March 21, 2012 at 12:26 am | Report abuse |
    • Response

      While I do agree that this guy should be convicted of killing this young kid, and I, as a dad do want to see justice against this guy, but your comments offend me. You automatically just assume that ALL White people are racist, and we all have had it easy all of our lives, well I'm sorry to say that just like you some of us, just like every race, have had to fight for what we wanted. I grew up one of just a few white kids, in a Mexican population, having to fight and work for what I wanted, nothing was given to me. I got no special treatment b/c I was white, I was the victim in others trying to put me down and fight me, but did I complain about it no, I learned tolerance and friends were made of the situation. I have many friends of mixed races, and yes you may say that being white it's easier, but I still grew up in a harsh situation and learned from it. It seems to me that the only thing you're teaching your son it to be tolerant of white people and other races, his friend, but be afraid of them, and that is no way to live. Teaching fear of any race is a sure way to promote racism, which nobody should promote. Again, I hope this guy, from what I know of the reports gets put away for life, but I hope at the same time you're not teaching your son Fear, the same way I learned not to fear those who outnumbered me and disliked me back then, but learned to become friends over time!!

      March 21, 2012 at 2:09 am | Report abuse |
  40. AfraidInAmerica

    I felt the very same way when I read Trayvon Martin's story. This story is sickening and makes my stomach turn. To think that a person can just walk up to someone and kill a person in cold blood in this day and age for no reason is just sick! The idea that the person is a child that was attacked and hunted like an animal is pure EVIL! The idea that the Sanford Police Department in Seminole County Florida didn't investigate George Zimmerman or the child's info to alert his parents that they had his dead body in his custody says there are ALOT OF RACISM IN THAT SANFORD, FLORIDA POLICE DEPARTMENT! I know that this WAS my child, your child, anyone's child, as George Zimmerman didn't kill Trayvon because he was "Trayvon Martin" but because he was a Black male and so this is any Black male in the country of America.

    Cold blooded murderers like George Zimmerman who has the stiff heart to walk up to a stranger and kill in cold blood should be placed on death row. And especially anyone who can kill a child should be on death row. Place the two of those together as a person who can kill at random anyone without cause and the person is a child, the perpetrator should SURE-LY be placed on death row and subjected to the death penalty.

    No one in America should walk around in fear knowing that a George Zimmerman is free.
    No one in America should be encouraged by the lack of penalties of George Zimmerman being that he's a cold blooded murderer.

    People like George Zimmerman is why the death penalty was enacted.

    March 21, 2012 at 12:15 am | Report abuse |
  41. Zea

    I'm sorry, but this whole thing is ridiculous. Martin was killed because Zimmerman is psychotic. This kind of thing does NOT happen every day. Now, I'm not saying that racism is gone in this country, but the chances of this woman's child being treated as she describes are slim to none. If he is truuly quiet, kind, and respectful towards adults, then the color of his skin will not matter. And if he does go on to attend and graduate from Yale, then it will be a tremendous accomplishment. He will be seen as a highly educated individual, and a diploma from an Ivy League school will definitely give him a boost in the job market. Honestly, for her to tell him otherwise is plain foolishness. As far as the incident in the airport goes, the older sister was probably just repeating something she'd heard before. Especially if she was only 6. You really can't take something that a young child said out of ignorance and use it as an example for racial violence.

    March 21, 2012 at 12:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      So his color would matter if he was loud, rude, and disrespectful towards adults? Can only whites be like that safely?

      And yes, the 6 year old was absolutely repeating something she'd heard – from her parents. How does that make it any better?

      March 21, 2012 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
    • Teacher

      This type of thing does happen every day. It doesn't make national news everyday. Everyday our sons, brothers, and fathers are profiled to be the murder-rapist that has been depicted since Europeans wanted to justify the slavery and murders of millions of us. And you can be sure that at every moment some black male somewhere is getting unjustly harassed for living-while-black.

      March 21, 2012 at 12:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Juli

      Zea, all I can say is that you truly have no idea! My sons (that are black) are always clean, always respectful and always well behaved. Sadly, I can list numerous incidents where they have had to deal with racism and being racially profiled. Just tonight when we were at the mall they were carefully watched and followed by a employee of a store. Other children/teenagers were there as well. The employee didn't react the same way to the white youth. How do I know for sure? I am white and so is my husband. The employee had no idea our sons were with us and had no idea that while she was watching my sons that I was watching her.

      March 21, 2012 at 12:44 am | Report abuse |
    • WhatintheWorld?

      Zea, I'm sorry but you have to get your head out of your hiney. If what you said were true, then President Obama (Harvard graduate, law professor, community activist....PRESIDENT) wouldn't hear the racist comments that he is forced to endure each and every day...just because he is...get this...HALF black...or to be politcally correct...bi-racial. My momma always used to say...folks think...if you're white..you are alright...if you black...you better stand back. That's awful to think and say...but its a prevailing theme throughout American history. Get your head out of the sand dear.

      March 21, 2012 at 8:49 am | Report abuse |
  42. Margaret Johnson-Hodge

    Thank you....you've said all that I've felt these last few days. There are those who will not 'get it'. Unfortunate but true, but the more we speak from our hearts and our realities, the more people will be forced to at least consider it what life is like for us.

    March 21, 2012 at 12:02 am | Report abuse |
  43. IntheQuiet

    THE COMMENTS ON THIS BLOG FROM ALL RACE OF PEOPLE ARE FILLED WITH NOTHING BUT FINGER POINTING RACIST SLANDER. WHAT WILL THIS SOLVE? WHAT POINTS ARE YOU ALL TRYING TO GET ACROSS BESIDES MORE HATE & RACISM? ARE THERE NO ANSWERS OR SUGGESTIONS OF HOW THE RACES CAN COME TOGETHER? IF NOT THAN ALL OF THIS IS A WASTE OF TIME.

    March 20, 2012 at 11:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Boo

      Welcome to the United States of America.

      March 21, 2012 at 8:24 am | Report abuse |
  44. an asian parent

    what a moving article. I feel for the author of this article. I have a son of around the same age... and I really feel her pain.

    It is sad that her son cannot grow in an environment where fear does not stalk or restrict him. He is a young boy, who needs to be free, happy and able to pursue his dreams without any shackles.

    March 20, 2012 at 11:54 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Anna in North Sacto CA

    You should be afraid. We are all afraid for young boys of color living in low IQ Wonderbread land where the local NW's are enabled by the local PD's – which are literally overrun by local skinheads in uniforms. It is a problem we have been facing for over 4 years, and the local PD does nothing. Except two weeks ago when some NW nutjob took matters in his hand and chased some kids to the next town. I called the PD community policing POP officer and he ONLY TOOK ME SERIOUSLY as Trayvon's murder was fresh in the nwes. So last year when this disreputable buch of oldpunks in the NW (call themselves "R d n cks with Guns" and published such in the local community rag) the POP officer looked at me (a minority female) with a look that screamed like "so what's yer problem with this beatch". And I have a witness to that look. Nothing was done then, so in the last year these self-described r d n cks with guns have been accosting me as I take a walk, reporting me as I bike my local streets for exercise, and challenging me "what are you doing here". Which I put up with, without being shot so far. So the local PD's are totally to blame, and given they kid Trayvon's dead boyd for 3 days while his family posted missing persons reports is evidence of their complicity. If this was your son, what would you do to the Sanfor Chief of Police. I'll tell you what I would do, and waterboarding would be a nicer alternative.

    March 20, 2012 at 11:52 pm | Report abuse |
  46. BlackandProud

    to proud parent: I never said all blks are stereotyped but more often so than others. It is interesting you used "ghetto" mentality vs trailer park mentality, which one is associated w/ blks despite it's Nazi origins in reference to the Jewish slums instead of trailer park. I can even understand someoone falling victim of the stereotyping as I would probably more susceptible if I wasn't black, and intelligent enough to know blacks are like any other ethnic group, as we all are a part of the 1 race/species – human!

    to Adam: Have you listened to the 911 tapes? It makes it more clear that Zimmerman took issue w/ Martin because of race. Also the facts of the case show that Zimmerman had issues with black males.

    If you are living in a predominantly white area then the Zimmermans of the world are a greater threat. But black on black crime is an additional threat not necessarily a greater threat.

    March 20, 2012 at 11:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      i consider trailer park and ghetto same thing as far as bad behavior however i want to say not all people living in a ghetto or trailer park are bad. its the culture im talking about but i give up , you can't stop making this racial. no matter what i say i guess it will always be racial for you.

      March 20, 2012 at 11:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      i had more to say but apparently im being silenced it wont post it oh well.

      March 20, 2012 at 11:53 pm | Report abuse |
      • Lols

        Are you serious "proud parent"? I honestly can't believe how many times you posted freaking out because it took 6 minutes for a comment to show up, you need to chill out.

        March 21, 2012 at 1:53 am | Report abuse |
      • proud parent

        i didnt freak out it was over an hour, and they didnt post my comment, then everytime i tried to post it they said already posted, i finally got it posted in two parts above after like fifty tries of doing it different ways.

        March 21, 2012 at 8:52 am | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      an you think youve proven your point but your statements prove mine, keep holding onto that and teaching your children those lessons and see how fast things do not change. its what you call a self fullfilling prophecy. once again its not us its white women, and its not a cultural thing causing the treatment at school its simply color.

      March 20, 2012 at 11:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      i have lived in that lifestyle as a kid so i know what im talking about. i was once pulled over by a cop for wearing a doo rag on my head when i was a kid. i wore the baggy jeans and while i was doing that i was watching menace to society and wishing i was one of the main characters. but one day i realized that i was bumping my head to a song about robbing women on the street while my own mother was mugged when i was a child while trying to get an education to get our family out of a ghetto. i grew up intellectually.

      March 20, 2012 at 11:58 pm | Report abuse |
      • proud parent

        god! they keep not letting me post

        March 21, 2012 at 12:04 am | Report abuse |
      • proud parent

        i was trying to put up my post in pieces but they still arent letting me so thats it whats above is only half. kind of frustrating and disappointing cnn.

        March 21, 2012 at 12:08 am | Report abuse |
    • proud parent

      sadly many of my friends didnt. they play those same songs with the ir infants in the room and dress their kids up to look like that.

      March 21, 2012 at 12:12 am | Report abuse |
      • proud parent

        sigh cnn doing it agian i give up, cnn you suck

        March 21, 2012 at 12:14 am | Report abuse |
  47. Luse

    To those who cite black-on-black murders do not forget that the gist of Trayvon's case is "racial stereotyping". There's also white-on-white murders, and it doesn't make news too. A black will murder another black and a white will murder another white for reasons other than "racial stereotyping".

    Same race crimes are kind of "within the family". It's the cross racial crimes that cross the boundaries.

    March 20, 2012 at 10:39 pm | Report abuse |
  48. me

    This is pure drama. A black male has 99.9 % chance of being murdered by his own race than by somebody outside of his race. Black on black crime is MUCH more of a reason for this woman to be afraid for her son.

    March 20, 2012 at 10:32 pm | Report abuse |
  49. proud parent

    i personally am horrified about what happenned to trayvon and his killer should be brought to justice, however in casey anthony land justice is far from what will happen in this case. the only possible positive outcome will be a change of the law, and only if the nra doesnt make it a gun rights issue. as far as the author of this article i disagree with much that she has said. racism is alive and well in america, and it goes every which way. every race has its population that hates other races, whites hating nonwhites, blacks hating whites and nonblack, white hating other types of white, black hating other types of black. it goes around and around, and when your a mix like me you find yourself witness to all sides. however the lessons being taught by this mother is unconscionable. even the incident at the airport which i find could have been miscontrued being repeatedly drilled into her son's head over and over throughout the years. i have two children and i would never let them sit on a dirty airport floor. yet i see parents of ALL races letting their kids crawl all over the floor. the other day i went to the mens room in a mall and witnessed a father having a bowel movement in a stall while his kids rolled all over the bathroom floor, even crawling on their belly under the stall itself. i consider them dirty, and if you let your kid crawl on the floor at an airport, dirty as well. drilling that event into her sons head over and over for nine years is nothing but ridiculous. now i have witnessed blacks attacking whites several times in my life because of skin color so that does happen as well, in contradiction of statements above that it doesnt happen. i dont think the problem is race so much as culture. in my opinion there is a ghetto culture that is detrimental to society, and it is embraced by all races. and everytime it is confronted people scream racism, so it never gets solved. even bill cosby who spoke out against some of the aspects of this culture was designated a self hater. this is the problem, and i think its a miracle that her son hasnt grown up hating white people with all the fear instilled by his mother. to many of us in main cities of all races, race and color no longer matter, just decent people and ghetto people. and both categories are filled by people of every race. so lets use incidents like these to pull us together instead of using it to build more walls. all caucasians arent racist and blanketing them as such is just stupid. its time to grow up and wake up, being against ghetto classless people isnt against black people, its against all people who act ghetto (which isnt a black word it originated with jewish people), and being against illegal immigration isnt anti immigration or anti hispanic, its against ILLEGAL immigration. so in closing while i wait for our national consciousness to wake up all i can say is -- JUSTICE FOR TRAYVON!!!

    March 20, 2012 at 10:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • BlackandProud

      proud parent:

      Okay, it is true that racism and classism exists. I don't see where this parent was saying that all white people or any people were all bad or racist. And you can tell when stuff is about racism or about something else. Meaning I think God gave us instincts that allow us to tell the difference from someone just saying you are dirty because you are sitting on the floor and dirty because they have been brainwashed by the media to hold certain stereotypes to be true. It is a double set of standards that blacks, esp males have to live by and any black parent that doesn't do their best to prepare their sons and daughters for all they are likely to encounter in our very racist society that pits each ethnic grp against another, then I would say that parent is negligent in their duties.

      March 20, 2012 at 10:32 pm | Report abuse |
      • proud parent

        i agree with you its possible that the girl might have been making a racist statement, but nowhere in the above article is it proven. and drilling it into the childs head is just building hate. and saying all black people or black males are stereotyped by the media is a falsehood, and obviously a symptom of your own misinterpretation. as i said above the prooblem is GHETTO culture. this is shared by people of many races. when a dj on hot 97 says stop snitching even though women are shot in their windows for calling the police on drug dealers, this is a problem, but it wont get addressed because people who feel there is a double standard scream racism. im a mix, and guess what i've gotten more jobs because of my nonwhite race than my white race, because of quotas, above others that were white and better qualified. so i dont buy into the whole black people are specially and specifically kept down because of a media doublestandard. like i said there is racism here and we should fight it together, but holding onto the crutch of american racism against blacks being the largest of all racism in america is ridiculous and as i said detrimental to society. it doesnt elevate your race it diminishes it. lets all stand together against discrimination for the future instead of holding onto this crutch that builds walls between us, and amplifies the problems that diminishes our society. and its our society together.

        March 20, 2012 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
      • BlackandProud

        to proud parent:

        I am glad things have worked out for you but the greatest beneficiary of quotas and affirmative action has been white women. http://www.theroot.com/views/real-affirmative-action-babies As far as the media mainly putting out negative images of blacks I can see that for myself, and all these black parents like myself can't be delusional when they worry and have anxiety about preparing their children for the world they have to face. Countless parents and black community have told their children they can't wear hoodies and sagging pants, although their white contempories can wear all the gothic wear they want. In schools there is a double standard. The gov't just issued a report saying how harshly blacks and other minorities are punished as opposed to their white peers. http://goodmenproject.com/featured-content/new-study-finds-black-students-more-likely-to-face-harsh-discipline/ So I get tired of the denial about the fact that racism is worse in many ways than it was before and I get sick of people saying blacks are playing the race card – guess what this stuff happens and others not believing it or being in denial does nothing as far as it going away.

        March 20, 2012 at 11:09 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Wow

    The woman in this article is creating the same thing she complained about. She has an encounter with her son and two young children in an airport years ago, and then proceeds to recount the story to him over and over to what...implant in his mind that people outside his own race are out to harm him? Sounds like she instilled the same fear and contempt in her child that the parents of those two little girls did.

    Why would a parent tell their children such things? Your Yale degree wont save you? HUH? Breeding hate and fear is not a responsible way to explain the ignorance of others.
    I have come to realize the term "racism" only exists to those who are racist themselves.

    March 20, 2012 at 10:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Respond to wow

      Until you have been where African Americans have been, until your only sin is your skin, until your child is remarked upon as being dirty and dangerous because of his skin.....don't judge. Black on black crime is horrible, check out the murder rates in New Orleans and Chicago...that too is the fear of African American mothers for their sons! Profiling of African Americam males is just as big of a fear....she is not teaching her son hatred or to be racist....she is teaching him how to survive in a world where he is hated, or profiled, or feared for nothing more than the color of his skin!

      March 20, 2012 at 11:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • closecoverb4stryking

      If only a Yale degree did keep a person from being discriminated against. I'm a Hispanic woman with a bachelors and I still get asked if I speak English or ignored altogether because people assume I don't and when I pay with my debit card, on more than one occasion, the cashier has mistakenly punched in the card as a food stamp card. When my son had to go the ER the nurse looked at me, started speaking Spanish until she saw my husband, who happens to be white, and then said "Oh, good." and then directed the questions at him. To speak on racism from the view point of a Caucasian is limited at best and naive at worst.

      March 21, 2012 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
  51. TBone

    Oh, you poor nggers! I am sick and tired of you fukkkers try to fabricate facts just to convict Zimmerman. Oh, Trevon wasn't armed. He had both of his arms, didn’t he? Then HE WAS armed enough to justify this type of self defense. What’s FBI, US justice department and president have to do with a local incident?
    Next time a ngger kills a whit man I want them to be involved also!

    March 20, 2012 at 10:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • i_know_everything

      what a racist m0r0n

      March 20, 2012 at 10:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Deon Wlliams

      Consider me your cyber-bully, you racist POS.

      March 20, 2012 at 11:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      TBone-you are stupid put away your LSD and Bong and get a life you are screwing up our countrty with the other people like you

      March 21, 2012 at 8:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Randy

      Dude-didnt your mother tell u drugs are bad for your health and mind

      March 21, 2012 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • BigBlackMomma

      TBone; it's patients like you that we wait for in our hospitals. Have a healthy day!

      March 21, 2012 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
  52. Miesha

    This is a powerful point of view. The truth is I feel the same way about my boys.

    March 20, 2012 at 10:10 pm | Report abuse |
  53. Beth

    It goes both ways. I've heard some pretty racist things come out of black peoples mouths for no reason whatsoever. I also find it ironic that black people can call each other certain names but heaven forbid a white person does. I could care less what color a person is as do 99% of the people in this country. There will always be ignorant people of every color and that's not something that can be changed with laws or carrying a chip on your shoulder. It takes parents to step up and instill values in their children to respect others...and again, that goes both ways. One final note, Zimmerman is actually Hispanic, not white. If CNN would actually post a picture of him, his claim of being Hispanic is pretty easy to see.

    March 20, 2012 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • BlackandProud

      You just said blacks say racist things and therefore infer they are racist, so why couldn't a white Hispanic be racist!! Some Hispanics consider themselves white and he's not likely all Hispanic, because Zimmerman isn't traditionally a Hispanic name. Just like any other ethnic grp all blacks don't act the same way. I have never used the word you refer to but if blacks want to use that word I have less problems with them doing so than someone else because they earned the right to, because they've had to endure all that goes along w/ that word. It's sort of like you can call your family mbr this or that, or talk about them in a certain way, yet others outside the family are excluded from doing so.

      March 20, 2012 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
  54. ummm

    I feel for the kid dying. I don't know if the guy was racist or not. I don't know him but to say it is because he got shot for his skin color is another thing but I would hope not. I lived in Decatur and East St. Louis for a big portion of my childhood. I was picked on everyday for my skin color (white person). I thought something was wrong with me or why did the other kids hate me so much. I learned to accept it and not all the kids were like that just select few. I think with that experance it help me grow as a person. In my opinion racest is just a person that is uneducated or does nothing to learn of the world around them.

    March 20, 2012 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
  55. Casey

    Are you KIDDING me? I was raised not to judge people on their skin color. That's racism. It's wrong. I grew up in a small, conservative, ultra-religious town, and my parents still managed to teach me to judge people upon their actions. And yet here's this woman, enforcing over and over to her son that everyone will be racist against him. How about taking some responsibility for making everyone respect your race and culture more, if you're so obsessed with the idea that it's inferior, maybe the problem isn't with everyone else, maybe the problem is with you. Is she not forcing us to judge her son for being male, and black? I find this article confusing more than anything else, because she expressed both fear that her son will be victimized and judged for being who he is, but also tells him over and over that he WILL be victimized and judged for being who he is.

    March 20, 2012 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Anne

      Casey, I found the story compelling. I have had black friends post on facebook how scared they are when their teenage boy leaves the home. How sad. I think she is trying to protect him from an obviously still racial world.

      March 20, 2012 at 10:10 pm | Report abuse |
  56. Sparky

    If your son thinks he's Trayvon, he should be lying motionless on the ground, or at least creeping around slowly, saying "Braaaaiiiinns...."

    March 20, 2012 at 9:43 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Gina L.

    I understand your concern. I lived in the Cali/OR area before moving to Oklahoma. We never had an ounce of trouble concerning racism apart from ignorant comments here and there until we moved to this state. The other day my daughter, who is half Asian, and her boyfriend, who is black, pulled into the church parking lot across the road after going to the park to talk about what to do next since the movie they were going to see was no longer playing. Within two minutes, a guy (white) in a huge truck pulled in. They started driving away and the guy in the truck followed them. He tailgated them, signalling them to pull over on a public road, which they didn't do. At the third stop sign, he swerved his truck in front of them, parking it so they couldn't move and got out, accusing my daughter's boyfriend of stealing gas from the church bus. They were nowhere NEAR the bus. My daughter was scared to death and was huddled in the corner of the vehicle with a jacket over her head, but then recognized the voice as one of the guys from the church and pulled the jacket off.
    The guy called the police back to cancel it when he recognized my daughter as a member.
    I sat both of the kids down and I WANTED to tell them to call 9-1-1 next time, but we just had a black kid out here shot by police. Yes, he had a weapon and drugs, but witnesses claim his hands were in the air and he was surrendering and the coroner's report says he was shot in the back.
    Not being white in this part of the country is dangerous. How do you teach your kids to protect themselves? Both my daughter and her boyfriend are top students in their school of over 3,000 students. They're among the top 20 honor students. They haven't had any trouble and had no idea what to do. They were afraid THEY did the wrong thing by not stopping!
    At times like this, I seriously wonder if I did the wrong thing by raising a decent, respectful, obedient kid.
    It's not the first time I've dealt with racism around here and concerning my children, but the adult always has an excuse, always has a reason, never even bothers with an apology when confronted. When people see me without my kids, they don't know we're a mixed race family. Thus I've had many try to "confide" in me about what a shame it is that the schools and area is "ruined" for white people and so dangerous because of all the non-whites who, according to them, are taking over the place.
    No wonder I wake up nauseated every morning.
    This country has a long, long way to go. I can't believe how ignorant I've been of how deep the problems really are. The stuff I'm seeing out here? These are things I thought didn't really happen anymore. It's been a very rude and painful awakening.
    What DO we tell our kids? Don't carry Skittles? There is no safety from ignorance, from cruelty, from racism, from the danger that comes when one lives surrounded by those things. That's a painful thing for parents and kids to have to deal with. I pray that despite the obstacles, some type of justice happens for Trayvon and his family, although nothing will ever make it okay. Nothing. Ever.

    March 20, 2012 at 9:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • K

      I have had the same experience with people assuming that because I am a pale blond woman that they can tell me all their racist opinions and I will somehow agree with them at a cellular level. Happens regularly and it is offensive, and people do not react rationally when I call them on it. I also have a job where I frequently ride around in a in small towns and rural areas with a black, male colleague – we have both noticed that quite a few people give us a hateful sneers or a wide berth on the assumption that we are an interracial couple just because we are in the same vehicle or sitting together at lunch having a cordial conversation. I have lived in MO, southern Louisiana, and Oklahoma, and constantly hearing these ignorant people tell me what they would never say in "mixed company" has only made me less tolerant of the hate. As a culture, we are NOT "over it." I wish we were.

      March 20, 2012 at 11:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Juli

      Thank you for sharing your story. I am going to share it with my sons so they can learn from your child's experience.

      Sadly, there is still alot of racism and ignorance in our country. Your stories reminded me of an incident that my friends always find funny but I personally am sickened from that happened several years ago. I was waiting in a long line at the post office. The woman behind my casually started making conversation. We got on the subject of kids and she asked me how many children I had and I said, "five". She quietly leaned over to me and said, "I always like to see WHITE families having lots of children". I couldn't find the words to respond because I am white and my sons are black.

      March 21, 2012 at 1:00 am | Report abuse |
  58. Tiffany

    I am moved to tears by this mother's struggle. Her wisdom in the face of fear is beyond any preparation I have so far undertaken with my own children and I am humbled. I worry about addiction, immorality, achieving below their potential. I worry about bullying, self-esteem, faith. I don't worry about my children being shot for running through a neighborhood. I know many people who argue that racism in this country is a fairy tale in the minds of black people who want pity and welfare...but still, their children are dying having committed no crime at all. What kind of fairy tale is that?

    March 20, 2012 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse |
  59. Jim

    I feel for you all, coming from a small island (Guernsey) in the UK with its usual problems of ethnic tensions although nothing compared with UK or US. i am ashamed to say that i thought the US was getting better with regards racism but once again the white man can kill an unarmed black boy and be allowed to walk away, where is the justice?

    March 20, 2012 at 9:13 pm | Report abuse |
  60. billybob

    Are you serious?!? You just now realised people get killed unexpectedly and for unknown reasons? This lady is SEVERELY racist and stereotypical!! HOly crap!!

    March 20, 2012 at 9:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Donald

      Are you serious Billybob? Racism is alive and well in our glorious country. the fears of this mother, and mothers throughout this country are justified. These terrrible ideas still exist, and because these ideas exist, the reality exists. Open your eyes and your hearts America.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:55 pm | Report abuse |
  61. Erin

    I am teacher that has been all over the south teaching. I remember growing up and the idea of racism was something from the 60's until I taught in the rural south and had a white student comment that a black student didn't count. I was shocked. The area I live now is high minority. I didn't even notice until my mother visited and commented on how all the shoppers at the local wal-mart were black. Skin color has never been very important to me and social skills were never my strong suit but recent event has made me question a lot of things.

    I was talking with some colleges and telling a funny story and used the word ghetto as a descriptor of a building (which I have done in the past to no problems) and all of my black colleges were scandilized and ran to my supervisor to complain. A similar incident happened with a student and the use of the word "dread" which apperently comes from"dreadful" now instead I call them locks (per student's suggestion) and overall the experiance is positive, but because my colleges didn't do this and instead ran to my boss I now feel akward around my black colleges and avoid conversation in case I say something else offensive and they run to my boss complaining rather than just telling me. I've never felt racist in my life until now.

    I know that a lot of the problems today are from people whose minds will never change, but experiances like this can prevent people who are maybe uncomfortable but open-minded from mixing with other cultures and races which would be one less person afraid. I will never know what it's like to be black, but sometimes I wish it was easier for us to all get along. Are we too PC?

    March 20, 2012 at 9:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • BlackandProud

      Yes, we are too PC most times. I'm sorry you had that experience. It seems your collegues, who happen to also be black, are a bit misinformed. Ghetto is the appropriate word for certain places, and the word comes from the Nazi term of what they called the Jewish slums during their reign. I wonder if they would have run back and told your boss if you said slums or if you were black and used the term 'ghetto'. Now your boss should have set them straight about the appropriateness of the word, assuming it was. Also, some locks are dreads. I can't understand why calling them dreads is wrong. Dreads and dreadful are two very different words.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:28 pm | Report abuse |
      • Erin

        I think it was the origin of the word that bothered her.

        March 21, 2012 at 8:57 am | Report abuse |
  62. CatSh

    Raising a girl these days is no picnic either.

    March 20, 2012 at 9:06 pm | Report abuse |
  63. Bernard Goetz

    This person should be shot, not to death, but paralyzed. Vigilantism is the only way to go in a country where only certain people benefit from the laws. No way should this animal still be walking trhe streets

    March 20, 2012 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  64. r

    I see the scary, sad truths in this story.

    March 20, 2012 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  65. missjennyray

    Reblogged this on The Real Talk Blog.

    March 20, 2012 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  66. Asian Indian

    Far more crimes have been committed by blacks against other races; than have been committed by other races against blacks. The ratio is probably 100 to 1. This article focuses on the 1 and ignores the 100. I am a minority myself (asian indian) but still believe blacks get too light a treatment from law enforcement.

    March 20, 2012 at 8:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • TK

      You truly can't be that ignorant.? You're simply stating an opinion.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • CatSh

      Take a trip to Texas. See how it feels to be mistaken for a Mexican.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bernard Goetz

      Asian Indian,

      I'd be willing to bet that your only exposure to blacks has been what you see on tv shows like C.O.P.S. or NBA games. You weren't born here in the US and the only understanding you have of them is what your racist parents & friends taught you as well as perpetuated stereotypes. please don't let your ignorance show by posting in forums like this

      March 20, 2012 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
      • Freethinker

        Well said.

        March 22, 2012 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
    • BlackandProud

      Really? Like the Asian Indian father who murdered his son's fiancee because she was black. Yes, that makes 2 cases in 100 (written sarcastically) where crimes were perpetrated against blacks. The truth is blacks commit no more crimes than any other group; however, they are exponentially prosecuted and disproportionately incarcerated compared to other groups, primarily whites. Blacks make up only 13-14% of the population so even if every black person was a criminal, like you so racistly inferred we still couldn't have the numbers you posted of us being 99% responsible for the crime in America. Just like this mom I fear for my son, and daughter, living in America where they are considered and treated as a second class citizens no matter how much of an overachiever or how beautiful, brilliant, and talented they are. Living with false stereotypes like the one you are perpetuating only adds fuel to the fire.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:15 pm | Report abuse |
      • Bernard Goetz

        Its a shame that some stray bullets don't take out people like Asian Indian and people who think like him/her instead of someone like Trayvon.

        March 20, 2012 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • atl78

      Your "facts" are incorrect. Most criminals attack victims of the same race. If you look at murder cases, the percentage of intraracial cases is fairly even between Blacks and Whites. Yet, Blacks are more likely to be prosecuted (and put to death) than Whites - especially when the victim is White.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jrlapham

      It is untrue that the color of ones skin is a direct factor of criminality. What most people outside of criminal justice do not realize is that we the public over look the arrests of white folks. Racism flows everywhere, in out police departments, Maricopa Sherrifs office, in our courts, Michigan juvenile courts, and everywhere else. Everything I have read leads me to believe that Zimmerman should be arrested. Maybe he was profiling, but it also reads as the police department is showing some racisim. The real factors that lend themselves to crime is lack of education and availability of social services.

      March 20, 2012 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Indian guy

      That's because you are prejudiced choothiye. I understand your fear stems from running a 7eleven store that probably gets mugged by black thiefs. But that is natural because most of these all nite stores operate in low income neighborhoods. 100:1 first of all that is a made up number or rather a POA number. Pulled out of your Ass.

      Most importantly how does that justify the murder of this young boy, be a human being first. I fear how racist your son is going to be or maybe how racist your baba is? Don't hate desi boy.

      March 20, 2012 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Remi

      Sorry folks but statistics show most crime is committed by young black males.
      This is stats only, real numbers. Not an opinion and not racist.
      I think your paranoia is doing your son a disservice. If he treats others with respect, speaks intelligently, is an all around good kid, a very small percentage will target him because he is black.
      You're hurting him when instead you should focus on his activities., the people he hangs around doing with, do you take him to church, is he home before dark, how does he spend his free time, does he have a dad who's a positive influence? Every boy needs a strong male role model, no matter what color he is.

      March 21, 2012 at 12:50 am | Report abuse |
      • Freethinker

        So...it appears Trayvon was raised the way you highlight. His father was in his life. He was a great student and described as happy and mild-mannered. Zimmerman couldn't see any of that when he stalked and chased Trayvon and gunned him down. He only saw that he was black.

        March 22, 2012 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
  67. Nikki

    The state of affairs right now, where racism against black people creates all these assumptions, and therefore real dangers.. which mean people have to live in this kind of fear.. really is sad.

    people have to listen to and respect the writer of this article. They're talking from their own experience, so it shouldn't be written off or argued against by those who can't understand having never had to experience that.

    I hope your son is never hurt.

    March 20, 2012 at 8:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bernard Goetz

      try telling that to 99 out of 100 white people who think racism no longer exists, since after all we now have ablack president

      March 20, 2012 at 8:38 pm | Report abuse |
  68. lifewithlarissa

    eloquent....and familiar. One of my closest friends is a single mother to two African American sons and she lives with these fears as well. I remember once her older son was arrested for having a small pocket knife on his key chain (this was in 2000, before 9/11). He was still a minor but they were going to charge him as an adult for carrying a deadly weapon. Fortunately she had enough resources (and a friend who was a lawyer) that should found good legal representation for her son and the charges were dropped. If he had been in Florida it would have been enough for someone to feel threatened, and to shoot him. Scary thought.....and another reason I am glad I do not live in Florida.

    March 20, 2012 at 8:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Alex

      When did she come over from Africa? Or is she, and her kids, just black? Cuz last time I checked, white is still called white.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:11 pm | Report abuse |
      • lifewithlarissa

        what does white being called white have to do with either the blog post or my comment?

        December 28, 2012 at 12:39 am | Report abuse |
  69. farmerjeani

    When the mother of my white grand daughters black fiancee told them it wasn't safe for her to drive to Florida with him, we all thought she was being overly cautious. Surely in this time frame, with a newly elected Barack Obama, this kind of racism no longer exists. Turns out the white side of the family is overly naive. They have been subjected to more than one instance of racism and after what happened to Travon, I can hardly wait until the end of the year when he will have graduated from college and they will take their two beautiful sons and leave Florida for good! I only wish I could be sure there was somewhere else in this country they can be completely safe.

    March 20, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • ohbehave

      So how many black folks have been shot by non-blacks in the past 20 years?
      Answer, it doesn't even come close to the numbers of blacks slaughtered by other blacks.
      White folks..... even the most racist of them .... are the LEAST of your worries.

      March 20, 2012 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
      • bm

        How the *uck you Know?? Where did you get your info?? Please don't say tv!

        March 20, 2012 at 11:48 pm | Report abuse |
      • Okola

        GO READ A BOOK! GET AN EDUCATION! IT WILL CERTAINLY DO YOU SOME GOOD.IGNORANCE IS BLISS.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  70. ohbehave

    Your son is far more in danger of being assaulted or killed by a black male.... FAR MORE likely.
    This CNN story about Trevon is a fluke, freak incident at the hands of a clearly troubled fool.
    Getting shot by a white guy is, in fact, one of the LEAST LIKELY problems that a black youth is likely to encounter. It is so rare, that it makes national news when it does happen.
    In the three weeks that this story has existed, I wonder how man black teens have shot by other blacks. I guess that is so common, that it isn't even newsworthy.

    March 20, 2012 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ummm

      A black male killing a black male barely makes the paper in a mid sized city, let alone on a national level. We all know this as fact. But this doesn't support the notion that white people are racists and black people are victims.

      March 20, 2012 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Elise Nagel

      I am not American, I live in Canada. You may be correct that in the US black on black crime is far more prevalent, I don't know enough about it to have an opinion on that particular issue. What I find so troubling about this murder, is that three weeks later, there appears that there has been very little investigation by the police. It appears that the police have decided that it is alright to murder a black child. I am a middle aged white woman, raising my black grandson. He has the same type of eyes that is shown in the pictures of Trayvon Martin...and it makes me afraid for my grandson and what he will come up against in his life. I cannot prepare him for this, I have never lived it myself. I may not know enough about US law, but I know a murder when I listen to those 911 calls.

      March 20, 2012 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
      • Bernard Goetz

        Elise,

        All you need to know is that down here in the good 'ole US of A, a black life isn't worth much in the eyes of the law and whites. Another young black male was murdered, so what? We won't even go to the trouble or legality of incarcerating this citizen who was willing to do our dirty work of ridding ourselves of black folks.

        March 20, 2012 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • atl78

      Well, we sure hear a lot about White kids being kidnapped/ killed. Do you know what race most of the attackers are? Unlike you, I am not trying to promote stereotypes but I am pointing out a simple fact...most crimes are committed by someone that looks like the victim. Thousands of kids go missing every day - many are minorities - but we only hear about a few of the "important" ones.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:55 pm | Report abuse |
  71. Ummm

    You do understand that your black son is many, many times more likely to be killed by another black male, right?

    March 20, 2012 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • ohbehave

      exactly! I almost think that this 'concern" over Trevon is disengenuous.
      They are using this story as a way to support the faultering narrative that the US is a racist nation.

      March 20, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
      • feathered_head

        Its comments like yours and other in response to this tragedy that prove that there are plenty of racists still to be found in this country. Shame.

        March 20, 2012 at 9:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • atl78

      Just as a White child is more likely to be attacked by a White criminal! Most crime is intraracial and crime is not limited to one race. But, people like you obviously believe something else and this is why we teach our sons to watch out for the Zimmermans in the world.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:45 pm | Report abuse |
  72. GW Bear

    Looking at some of the responses here, from mostly white responders tells me that most of us white folks just do not get this. I very much doubt there is a single black parent out there who cannot relate to your article in some way or other. I also suspect most whites never truly can, as it just looks different from our point of view. After Martin's death I cannot help but feel that the Person of Color perspective is valid far, far more often than white people will admit. Even if we never really understand it, after "Martin/Zimmerman" nobody can pretend the sense of fear and caution as seen from the Point of View of a person of color isn't a real threat to be faced every day.

    It's tragic no matter how you look at it. Nobody should have to feel this way.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • atl78

      Great post! I tend to think that we all have it mixed up. Non-whites have experienced racism and they are determined to prove it so we sometimes see racism where it isn't. On the other hand, some Whites are reluctant to see racism because they do not view themselves as racists and do not want to assume any personal responsibility. But, cases like this prove that it exists and it is a real problem in our country. It's time that we stop taking everything personally and look at what really IS vs. what we want to see.

      March 20, 2012 at 10:27 pm | Report abuse |
  73. griff

    What I want to know is, where is the balance between teaching your child not to run in a neighborhood because he's black, and teaching your child that it's okay to just be a child? I'm not black, so I won't pretend to understand where the author is coming from with this point. It seems to me though that by teaching her son that it's not a good idea to run through a neighborhood, that's only perpetuating the problem by conditioning people or reenforcing the notion that a black kid running through a neighborhood is only up to no good. It conditions people to think that "black kids are taught to not run through neighborhoods," so if it's happening, it must be because something is wrong.

    On the other hand, I understand why Trayvon didn't run when he was afraid— not only would it have looked suspect, but he had the fact that he was black working against him on top of it. It's horrible and terrible and straight up embarrassing that people are STILL SOOOOO as ignorant as the shooter and that it reflects on the rest of us as well.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Freethinker

      Griff, good question. It's a balance that parents of color struggle with... to not teach your kids anything at all is to set them up for trouble. To teach them too much is to overburden their young hearts and minds. How much is enough? Is there such a thing a too much preparation?

      March 22, 2012 at 2:10 am | Report abuse |
  74. Chuck

    Every group gets singled out for hatred by someone; it's not just black people. Get a grip on reality and stop whining.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brenda

      Chuck, wait until your child is murdered, beaten half to death, bullied or singled out for being too fat, too skinny, too tall, gay, etc., then you write a statement telling someone to stop whining.

      March 20, 2012 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ummm

      Brenda, you forgot the possibility of being beaten for being white. Happens every day in predominantly black schools.

      March 20, 2012 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
      • Denise

        I went to a 99% Black high school and for the three years I never heard of any white kids getting beat up.

        I cried reading this story because I have an 18 year old brother going off to college in the fall and everyday I pray for him NOT to have any harm done to him, but I never focus on this type of tragedy happening. If you aren't a person of color I don't think you can ever really appreciate the reality of the different life experiences. No matter how "good" a little black boy is- he will always be seen as a threat to someone.

        March 20, 2012 at 8:55 pm | Report abuse |
      • writermom6

        I attended a Christian school through eighth grade. We had two black students in a school of about two hundred. My father decided to send me to public school for ninth grade, but some of my teachers frightened me with tales of being jumped in the halls of the racially-integrated school. My parents calmed my fears, and I went, and I had a wonderful experience. Throughout my four years of public high school I never saw a single incidence of violence. We white people need to stop with the tales of the boogey man. It's a myth and we're adults, so we should know better.

        March 20, 2012 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
      • Chuck

        Denise,

        A litlle white boy will beseen as athreat to someone, a little Asian boy, a little Latino. The experience of being singled out for hatred is not unique to black people; although, that's what some people would like you to think.

        March 20, 2012 at 11:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck

      Brenda,
      Stop whining about being black.

      March 20, 2012 at 10:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Freethinker

      @Chuck you do have a point in that everyone has prejudices. However some choose to act on theirs and other actively fight their prejudices. Further when a majority group has collective prejudices against a minority group it shifts from just not liking someone, not wanting them to be date your daughter or even beating them up to being able to deny them quality housing, fair loans, quality education, access to good jobs and promotions, equality under the yes of the law and more. Surely you can see the difference. To say that blacks (and other people of color) have not experienced and do not continue to experience the heavier burden of discrimination in this country is to demonstrate your ignorance of your country's history. Time to hit the books and pay attention to what is going on around you!

      March 22, 2012 at 10:35 am | Report abuse |
  75. Venice

    I'd like to start my comment off by stating that what has happened to Trayvon Martin and his family is so tragic and I believe that justice will prevail and George Zimmerman will not only be arrested but he will be convicted. Let us please keep this family in our prayers. As African American parents of African American young adult children, my husband and I share those same fears. We are so thankful to have 5 wonderful successful children and we taught them survival tools similar to this mother's teaching. We did not make it about black and white. We made them aware of racism from all races including their own, but we taught them to choose their friends and acquaintances by the content of their character. We molded from within, teaching them who they are as a person. I do feel that young black men have a target on their backs and though young black females are also stereotyped they DO NOT deal with the same amount of stereotypes as black males. We have raised both genders. Warning our kids of the reality of racism is very important. If we don't teach them that reality, someone else will. But there is a balance to that lesson and if we as parents are not careful of how we teach it we will find ourselves raising a racist in our own household.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fearfighter1

      Thank you! A rare perspective on these comment boards...

      March 20, 2012 at 8:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • cdeu_220

      Couldn't agree more – thanks much for sharing.

      March 21, 2012 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  76. Adam

    I got to the point of this story where it appeared it's only path was this is a racial crime... While given the public information about this case I feel this boys death was murder I do not believe the information claims it's motivated by skin color. This is poor journalism if you can even call it that.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kim

      This is a blog NOT a news article. There's a difference.

      March 20, 2012 at 9:21 pm | Report abuse |
  77. Steve

    until society cleans it's self up you will have people being cautious around those different from them.
    when you see murders in the inner city, car jackings, drug dealings, baby daddies' by the thousands, it does paint a very bad picture with racial overtones. it's the way it is people! and until these things change, people will be cautious around certain people! it is racism! yup! sure is.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • queenbee10

      Now..imagine no minority wanting white teachers due to 100% of teachers molesting students being white..imagine no one wanting to be around white males due to over 95% of serial and mass murders being white males. whites often tend to paint other races with a broad brush but seldom apply the same std to themselves or their own

      March 22, 2012 at 1:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Freethinker

      You SHOULD be cautious around drug dealers and car jackers. You would be stupid not to be. But to be cautious around an unarmed teen on an errand who happens to share the race of the drug dealer you saw on the news last night (never mind the fact that many of their customers drive in from the lily white suburbs and aren't cautious of these drug dealers) doesn't make any sense. With that standard you should be cautious around Michael Jordan, Condoleeza Rice, the local school principal, the local banker etc if they happen to be black. What a terrible way to have to live your life. And is it any wonder that given your justification Trayvon, an innocent teen, was gunned down by a man who shared your irrational fears though he was armed and outweighed the child by 100 lbs? Trayvon's blackness made him into some sort of mythical black boogeyman who could only be vanquished by murdering him in cold blood despite the fact that he only held candy and was trying to get back to his father. You're right...it is racism....and it is sad.

      March 22, 2012 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |
  78. Kym

    I'm so disgusted after reading this article. This racism is so depressing, all of it. I hate stereotypes and prejudices towards all races, cultures, etc. Looks this country will never be rid of racism, stereotypes, etc.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  79. Ummm

    While my heart goes out to the family of this boy, what are the statistics of whites killed by blacks vs the reverse? I'm just wondering.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ashy

      You are going to be shocked. As a white male I should walk around in riot gear... Especially around blacks...

      http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/race.cfm , only available up to 2005:

      White on White: 4755
      Black on Black: 4497
      Black on White: 934
      White on Black: 337
      Other on Black: 4

      March 21, 2012 at 8:01 am | Report abuse |
      • Tom, Tom, The Piper's Son

        Something to consider in these statistics is total population. There will be more "white on white" simply because there are more white people in the U.S. Blacks only account for 10-18% of the population depending on what site you check. (feel free to correct that %). With that in mind the statistics of black on black and further down your list is staggering. In short black crimes are exponentially higher per capita. But let’s not let facts get in the way of being PC.

        March 21, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  80. Chuck

    Your son knows he could be Trayvon?

    I could be one of the British tourists that were killed in Sarasota. Should I spend alot of time praying because I'm white?

    Get serious lady. Your son is in no more danger because he is black than anyone else is because they aren't part of some other group. Quit whining.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • rachel

      wrong Chuck.

      March 20, 2012 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Daphne

      Not only are you WRONG you insensitve.

      July 16, 2013 at 5:38 pm | Report abuse |
  81. reinadelaz

    Thank God you are teaching him not to run. In this police state, anyone's son could be Trayvon. Anyone's son.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
  82. Roland Martin

    Black people don't like white people in the hood..That is what the janitor told me

    March 20, 2012 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
  83. Franky

    @raydd

    Yup same goes for Zimmerman, the odds are he is far more likely to be killed by another white male than he would be by Martin if that's your argument. In fact, the the little white girl too would also likely be attacked and or killed by white male than she would have been by her son. The fact is irrespective of race, most crime is "intra" -racial not "inter" – racial. So, your whole argument is moot.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
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