“You can go into debt to get an education, or play college football, wear a suit and tie to work in corporate America, or serve this country in the armed forces, but so long as you are black you will be subject to racism and white supremacy. You will constantly have to answer questions about your existence and prove that you belong. And in some instances, like that of Jonathan Ferrell, you may not even be given the opportunity to explain.”
“Who but a black teenager has the ability to dehumanize a police officer with a stare? Who but a(n unarmed) black teenager can make (armed) police feel threatened by clenching his fists? Who but a black teenager can simultaneously clench his fists and feed a puppy? Who but a black teenager isn’t afforded the opportunity to comply with a request before it’s determined that they’re not complying? Who but a black teenager is choked to the point they urinate themselves while being handcuffed? When does any of this happen to people who aren’t black teenagers?”
A handy six-step guide guide brought to you by Channing Kennedy, Colorlines.com’s self-appointed white male correspondent. (Seriously though, it’s brilliant. Read it.)
“Not every white person is a racist, but the genius of racism is that you don’t have to participate to enjoy the spoils. If you’re white, you can be completely oblivious, passively accepting the status quo, and reap the rewards.”
“It wasn’t just the gun in Zimmerman’s hand that shot Trayvon. It was a historic rendering of black men as enemies of the state, menaces to society, threats to the American way of life, that caused Trayvon to lose his life that day. How do you legislate against that?”
“What Beyoncé did was own her sexuality, for herself and no one else, in a public space—and it freaked some people out. Whether you think Beyoncé was “self-objectifying” is a question of whether it’s possible for a woman to publicly embrace her sexuality without being defined by the hetero-male gaze. As a hetero-male, I hope I’m not speaking out of turn when I say: Not everything is about us. In fact, most things aren’t, we just pretend they are so we can feel good about ourselves.”
President Obama: ‘If I Had a Son, He’d Look like Trayvon’
Speaking to reporters in the Rose Garden at the White House this morning, President Barack Obama said that the parents of Trayvon Martin are in his thoughts and that it is imperative that we “get to the bottom of exactly what happened.” “You know, if I had a son,” Obama said, “he’d look like Trayvon.”
Find The Nation's coverage of the shooting of Trayvon Martin here.
“The crime of killing a black person still is not greater than the crime of being black. And, as one of the family’s attorneys asked, ‘Do we really believe that if Trayvon Martin had pulled the trigger, he would not have been arrested?’”
“The Italians, of course, those people course don’t have their heads screwed on tight. They are wonderful people, but.”—Richard Nixon to Chuck Colson, Feb. 13, 1973.
“I don’t want any Jew at that dinner who didn’t support us in that campaign. Is that clear? No Jew who did not support us.” —Richard Nixon, discussing who would get invited to a 1973 state dinner for Golda Meir, to Rose Mary Woods, his secretary, Feb. 3, 1973.
Read more embarrassing presidential comments from this year’s Nixon Tapes release.