I don’t understand what “post-racial” means. Yes, I can look up the definition, but that still will never reconcile for me the compound “post” and “racial”. Shouldn’t it be “post-racism” since that’s essentially what it means? What does “after” and “racial” mean? What ever post-racial is supposed to mean, I know for sure that we in this country are not “post-racial”.

Remember that time in Texas a black man shot a white kid at a gas station? Yeah, the brotha, shot a white kid because the white kid and his thug friends were playing country music REALLY loud. Remember the black guy shot a bunch of bullets into the car, killed an unarmed seventeen-year-old white kid, then went to a bed and breakfast with his girlfriend. Remember how the jury couldn’t decide if that black guy actually murdered that white kid? Remember that? You don’t? Oh right, ‘cause it would never fucking happen.

Michael Dunn IS going to prison, but not for the murder of Jordan Davis. Historically (it would seem), in the South, white men are not convicted for the murder of black men. The lack of a murder conviction in the Michael Dunn trial illustrates exactly why we are not post-racial. Young black men do not matter. Dead young black men, do not matter. Stand Your Ground laws are not post racial, the victims are disproportionally black. In this case, they allow an act of murder in the first degree, the principal charge in this case, to go unpunished.

Florida, oh Florida. When I was about fifteen-years-old, my father wanted me to leave my mother in Brooklyn and come live with him and his family (my sister, step-mother, and two step-brothers) in West Palm Beach, Florida. There was no chance my mother would agree to that, unless it was what I wanted. There was no chance I would agree to that, because even then, I had learned enough about Florida to know that a fifteen-year-old black boy wasn’t really welcome there. Even then I was very aware that the illusion of Florida my father and his new family had escaped to, the warm weather, the “safe” neighborhoods, did nothing for the fact that young black men in the South are the enemy and have been considered as such for over four hundred years. My stepbrothers, the ones who were supposed to benefit most from the move South, quickly found themselves in more crime, drugs, and “bad influences” than I ever even considered in New York. In the end, one would end up in prison for murder and the other would go into the armed forces, mostly to keep from ending up in prison. They were brought to Florida for a better life, but Florida offered them nothing except vilification and fear.

With Stand Your Ground the Florida courts have expressed something that I’ve understood since I first heard of Emmett Till as a child, young black men do not matter. Much better for African Americans to be born, then enter old age as quickly as possible, so to not offend the residents with their scary hooded sweatshirts or loud rap music. Perhaps the Florida license plate should read: Please, black people, just be born and die.

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