Note to my friend Tom,
Tom, you so kindly and bluntly informed me that my blogs are too wordy and rambling. In response to your advice, I was going to compose an extremely succinct blog consisting of perhaps five strident, horribly rhyming statements expressing my contempt for the Republican Party, but then a story broke that hurt my heart. So Tom, forgive me for the next 450 or so words.
Facts: a 17 year old youth of color was shot and killed by George Zimmerman in a gated community in Sanford, Florida. Zimmerman, the self-appointed captain of the neighborhood watch committee was armed with a 9 mm semi-automatic handgun. Trayvon Martin, visiting a relative in that community, was armed with a box of Skittles. Prior to the shooting, Zimmerman called 911 and was instructed by the dispatcher to NOT follow Trayvon.
Pain in my gut: my grandson is a 12 year old beautiful, talented child of color. My niece lives in a gated community in Florida. It is not beyond my imagination that my lovely grandson’s life could be ended so senselessly. Words cannot express my sadness and distress in response to this horrific story.
What is to blame: fear and ignorance
Fear: fear of people different from oneself, unwarranted and exaggerated fear that crime lurks behind every townhouse, and fear that our government cannot protect us.
Ignorance: that a gated community, a car, a cell phone, and 911 center is not sufficient protection; it just takes 5.5 pounds of force to pull a trigger, but that force cannot be undone; that strapping on a holster does not make a “nobody” a “somebody”; that guns may not kill people, but bullets do; that a gun’s sole purpose is to end a being’s life.
(Please note: I am a hunter. When I walk out that door with my weapon, I know I am fully prepared to kill. Even, when I target shoot, I am practicing killing.)
Who is to blame: those instilling and abetting fear and ignorance for political and monetary purpose
Who is guilty ? Trayvon Martin was guilty of looking suspicious, and Mr. Zimmerman is guilty of being either a racist s.o.b. or a fool
Last words: the NRA, which yearns and works at arming every citizen 24/7, and every damn politician who pushes the 2nd amendment, race baits, or plays the “other” card, should, but won’t be ashamed.
Grandpa Matt says, “SHAME ON YOU ALL, YOU BASTARDS”
Matt Cole is a dad, grandpa, former construction executive and middle school science teacher. As an active member of the Chicago Ethical Humanist Society, he cares about people.