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Trayvon Martin™

If President Barack Obama had a Hispanic uncle, he would look a lot like George Zimmerman.

Like Obama, Zimmerman boasts a mixed racial heritage — one white parent, and one parent of color. Zimmerman’s mother was Hispanic, Obama’s father was African. So you can see the obvious connection they share.

Zimmerman, of course, is the man who shot and killed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin last month.

Can’t see the relevance of such a comparison?

Neither could I understand the connection the president tried to make last week. While discussing Martin’s death, he famously said: “You know, if I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.”

What could the president have possibly meant by that?

Perhaps the president was trying to tell us that he feels the pain of Martin’s death more acutely because the young man was black. The president, like just about everyone else on the left, was eager to exploit the controversy surrounding the shooting.

Ironically, if Obama had a son, that son’s life would look nothing like Trayvon Martin’s. That son would presumably attend the same $31,000-a-year Sidwell Friends School the president’s daughters currently attend. It’s an elite private academy only the wealthiest can afford — a far cry from the inner-city school Martin attended.

Perhaps Obama’s son would travel unaccompanied by his parents on international vacations during spring break at the tender age of 13, like the president’s eldest recently did.

The president’s children live lives that are nothing like Trayvon’s. Still, the president didn’t let the glaring absurdity of his claim stand in the way of scoring cheap political points.

Racism, Inc.

Here’s the bottom line: George Zimmerman killed Trayvon Martin. Therefore, we ought to be asking serious questions. If it was a case of self-defense, as Zimmerman claims, those claims need to be subjected to a thorough investigation. Why did Zimmerman follow Martin instead of waiting for police to arrive? Why did he approach the young man?

What has now become clear, however, is that the narrative of the sweet, young schoolboy with a bag of Skittles, ambushed by a raving racist and shot because he was wearing a hoodie is — in a word — fictional.

Why do the media continue to show us outdated pictures of Martin — pictures that make it look like he was 12 years old, when, in fact, he was 17, covered with tattoos, hardened by a life of troublesome influences?

Martin was on suspension from school for drug possession at the time of his death. There is some evidence he may have been dealing drugs. None of that means he deserved to be shot. But Zimmerman claims it was self-defense. He claims Martin assaulted him, knocked him to the ground, broke his nose, and pounded his head into the pavement.

We didn’t hear much about these self-defense claims when this case first became a big news story. The liberal media and political operatives, like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, have tried to paint this as a clear-cut case of racially motivated homicide. The truth is far more complicated.

In a shameless attempt to turn the death of a young black man into a racial wedge to stir up political bases, a host of professional race baiters, media goons, and political operatives, have done their best to frame Martin’s death in such a way as to maximize their personal gain, whether in political currency or cold hard cash.

Martin’s own mother, Sybrina Fulton, has filed applications with the United States Trademark and Patent Office to seek ownership of the phrases “I Am Trayvon” and “Justice for Trayvon.”

Fulton makes media appearances, gives tearful interviews, and testifies on Capitol Hill, while simultaneously raking in cash for the use of her dead son’s name. It makes one wonder whether she’s in it for love or money.

Both Fulton and Martin’s father have quit their day jobs. Funds have been set up to funnel donations to the family. It seems they expect to make a living off their son’s death.

The New Black Panther Party has even issued a $10,000 reward for Zimmerman’s “capture.” Just about everyone is out to exploit this troubled young man’s early death for their own purposes.

What really happened that day in Florida? One thing is for sure, neither you nor I nor any of the politicians out there solemnly stoking racial fires knows for certain.

Here’s another thing I’m sure of: None of those who are exploiting Martin’s death for personal gain are going to let the truth stand in the way of their revolting avarice.

This article originally appeared in the International Business Times and is reprinted here with permission. Follow Nathan on Twitter @nathanharden

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