Monday, February 25, 2013
Statement on the Anniversary of the Vigilante Murder of Trayvon Martin
By Carl Dix, co-founder of the Stop Mass Incarceration Network and representative of the Revolutionary Communist Party
Almost 60 years ago a Black teenager named Emmitt Till was lynched by white men in Money, Mississippi. Last year, Trayvon Martin, another Black teenager, was murdered by George Zimmerman, a vigilante and a wannabe cop, who saw Trayvon’s Black skin and decided that he must be a criminal. How long are we gonna have to put up with these kinds of racist outrages? Murders like this concentrate the way this country has criminalized Black and Latino youth, treating them as guilty until proven innocent, if they can survive to prove their innocence. This is unacceptable. It must stop, and it is up to us to stop it!
No one should want to live in a world where there’s a death sentence hanging over every Black and Latino youth. This death sentence might, or might not, get carried out, but it’s always there. We must say NO MORE to living in a society and a world like this anymore. We have to mean it when we say that, and we have to act to make our determination to end this kind of world.
That’s why the Stop Mass Incarceration Network issued a Call for people to wear hoodies and take to the streets on this day. It’s why the slogan, “We Are All Still Trayvon!” is being raised today. And it’s why we have to not only act today, but continue to express our rage at the vigilante murder of Trayvon and at the way the whole criminal “injustice” system of this country targets Blacks and Latinos.
Remember that the system has already “worked” once in this case. It “worked” when the cops discovered Zimmerman standing over Trayvon’s dead body and let him walk away free. The only reason Zimmerman faces a trial today is because Trayvon’s parents refused to silently accept their son’s murderer being set free, and people all across the country responded to their call for justice by taking their outrage to the streets. This forced the system to re-arrest Zimmerman and put him on trial. If we had failed to take to the streets today, and if we fail to continue expressing our determination to fight for justice in this case, that system will “work” again, in the way it always has, by letting the racist murderer walk away free again. And they will continue to give green lights to killer cops and racist vigilantes who prey on our youth.
It is a basic truth that this kind of racist violence has happened since the very 1st African was dragged to these shores in slave chains. It’s built into the very fabric of this country, and it will take Revolution - Nothing Less to uproot it and all the other horrors—the brutality inflicted on women, the wars for empire, the long distance death rained down on people thru drone strikes and more—that this system enforces on humanity. As a revolutionary communist, this is what I’m working to do—I’m spreading the need for, and possibility of, revolution everywhere and mobilizing people to fight the power and transform themselves and others, for revolution. The key way I’m spreading revolution right now is thru promoting the premier of “BA Speaks: Revolution-Nothing Less!” which is a film of a recent talk by Bob Avakian, the leader of the Revolutionary Communist Party. Everybody who hates the hell on earth this system enforces on humanity needs to check out this film because it breaks down why revolution is possible, the kind of world we could bring into being thru revolution, what those who see the need for revolution need to be doing today and more.
This is a critical time for people to act, from whatever perspective they feel compelled to resist this outrage. Horrors like the vigilante murder of Trayvon jolt people into standing up and resisting the system’s attacks. It is in times like these that people are more open to hearing about and acting on what is the source of all these horrors and what needs to be and can be done about them. This part of why we needed to take to the streets and wear our hoodies today and why we need to continue standing up and saying NO MORE to the murder of Trayvon and to the way they criminalize our youth overall.
One year ago today, George Zimmerman stalked and murdered Trayvon Martin. Today we are declaring, all across the country, that we refuse to accept this outrage in silence. And that we will no longer accept all the outrages the criminal “injustice” system of this country enforces on people. In this way, we are working toward the day when all these outrages—the police murder, the racial profiling, the horrific numbers of people warehoused in prisons and all the rest—are NO MORE. Everyone who is disturbed by these outrages needs to join us.
WE ARE ALL STILL TRAYVON!