In case any of us had any doubts about where he stood or who he really is, George Zimmerman is selling copies of a painting he made of the Confederate battle flag out of a gun shop in central west Florida.
A soul doesn’t get more rotten than this.
Adding fresh sting to a national wound he opened when he shot to death an African-American teenager walking home from a convenience store is a novel low, even for Zimmerman.
But do-gooder “Georgie,” as his bailiff uncle portrayed him at his murder trial, just had to intervene and come to another bigot’s rescue. He thought the Confederate flag was just the thing to show support for discrimination and profiling of another group, this time Muslims.
In a promotional video for the $48.90 flag prints (discounted from the original $97 that not even his supporters apparently wanted to pay) Zimmerman explains that he sought out Andy Hallinan, owner of Florida Gun Supply in Inverness, after learning that Hallinan had declared his store “Muslim Free” and was facing consequences.
Hallinan is being sued for discrimination by the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization.
Zimmerman says he was moved to paint the Confederate flag and the words “The 2nd protects the 1st” as an ode to both the right to bear arms and to the Stars and Stripes he painted first and sold on eBay for $100,000.
And now, here he is, adding to his résumé fund-raising for the cause of discrimination: Buy a print and you’re entered in a raffle to win the original bad, childish George Zimmerman painting of the emblem of the South that fought to perpetuate slavery.
What a contrast to the dignified way the Miami parents of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin are conducting their lives and operating the Trayvon Martin Foundation to make a difference in young lives and to help parents who have suffered losses like theirs.
The foundation is hosting a Youth Empowerment & Solutions (YES) Conference in Miami Oct. 22-24. Last weekend, Trayvon’s father hosted a “Circle of Fathers” for men who have lost children to senseless gun violence.
“They have recommitted themselves to the mission to remember their son,” Adner Marcelin, spokesman for the Parks & Crump Law Firm that represents Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, told me Tuesday.
Fulton and Martin won’t comment on Zimmerman.
“The family does not comment on his actions or anything to do with him,” Marcelin said. “They are focused on their son and his foundation.”
Zimmerman, on the other hand, only gets himself into trouble with the law, with girlfriends who call the cops on him then run out of the picture scared for their lives.
He acts, post the not-guilty verdict, like the troubled man he is — the one the jury couldn’t or wouldn’t see. A man who fans the flames of a divided, ailing country with no thought to the family who lost a young son who was minding his own business and was where he belonged.
A man who had taken another’s life in legitimate self-defense would act with more dignity.