At Florida Memorial University on Feb. 4, I sat stunned listening to the parents of Trayvon Martin describing the call five years ago that their son had been shot dead. Trayvon would have turned 22 on Feb. 5.
His parents recalled police treating them as a nuisance when they pleaded for information. As protectors of Trayvon’s legacy and now advocates for other broken parents, they said one goal of theirs is to end profiling of black boys and men.
It hit me that they had no one to talk to. Whites largely do the profiling, yet I was one of just three whites there, plus the rep for Random House, publisher of their book about Trayvon and injustice, “Rest in Power.”
Had a Syrian refugee been on that stage, the hall would have rocked with supportive, caring whites and Latinos. Don’t get me wrong — refugees deserve the love. But so do the American parents of black boys murdered by watchmen, police, or other black boys.
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Welcoming refugees makes us feel moral, and we rush toward it. But white society has long been silent about, and therefore complicit in, the murders of black boys. So, like cowards, we ignore them.
Jordana A. Hart, Miami Shores